New York-based indie-chamber rock musicians, Eric Margan & the Red Lions, present their debut release Midnight Book (March 17, 2009/Self-Released). Drawing from years of classical training and a personal devotion to modern jazz and classic rock, the talented songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/front man, Eric Margan, makes an original and sophisticated entrance with an impressive collection of 12 incredible tracks in Midnight Book.
The debut album for 22-year-old Margan resonates as a somber, theatrical novel - complete with love, tragedy, heartbreak, and revival. Midnight Book, as the title might imply, is best experienced from "cover to cover." Midnight Book delivers stellar and distinctive compositions, augmented by ensnaring and intriguing lyrical poetry, leading the listener into an introspective musical journey.
The album opens with "An Ocean Blue", a swirling, seductive tapestry of orchestral grandeur, seemingly emerging from the darkest depths of the piano and sets the stage for a colossal, metaphor-laden song cycle. As the pages of Midnight Book turn, the love story that began so triumphantly begins to unravel in Margan's "A Speckled Mind." It is here that Margan displays the delicate touch of an impressionist painter, through the juxtaposition of orchestral strings combined with a powerful yet poignant drum and bass polyrhythm.
The album's standout "Old Man River" is the turning point in the story, full of grandiose and massively cinematic crescendo. Margan's colorful plot thickens to a soaring climax, telling a story of an estranged marriage - complete with twists, turns, murder and revenge.
Margan appropriately concludes his heavy narrative with the relatively bare instrumentation of strings, piano, voice and guitar. The last notes are imminent, chords that are prepared to leave their final impression - but not without a last fighting chance.
Born and raised in Columbia County of Upstate New York, Eric Margan's musical endeavors started at just nine years old when he began studying flute. It was when he turned 14 that the hobby had become a potential career. He began treading new waters with the formation of his first band - a three-piece rock group in which he was a co-songwriter, bassist, and singer. Margan furthered his bass skills by participating in various jazz ensembles and combos throughout his high school years. Furthering his music studies, he brought together his classical training with his passion for modern rock and live performance with the addition of the talented musicians that make up the Red Lions.
A stellar line-up of musicians was assembled to augment Margan's music on stage, including drummer Jim Bertini, bassists Scott Kellerhouse and Vince Chiarito, keyboardist Zachary Seman and guitarist/flutist/vocalist Johanna Warren. Live performances and Midnight Book also feature various string, woodwind and brass players.
Eric Margan and the Red Lions are rapidly earning the respect and admiration of fans and bands alike, from opening for such acts as the Benevento Russo Duo and L.A.-based Bittersweet, to recording sessions with Pete Seeger and Richie Havens, as well as playing a multitude of shows in the Northeastern United States.
What critics have been saying about Eric Margan and the Red Lions:
"There are a number of acts that are currently creating music right now that I would call good, but I would have to downgrade them to "passable" just so I could get the proper amount of distance to the "great" that I would assess to Eric Margan & The Red Lions. "Midnight Book" should be seen as a "must-have" album…"-NeuFutur Magazine
"Elegant, sophisticated and refreshingly open-hearted, singer-guitarist Margan pens wonderfully literate and melodically inventive songs that he has orchestrated for a most unusual but oh-so effective ensemble of musicians featuring drums, bass, keyboards, violin, cello, clarinet and flute. This is Chamber music for the 21st Century, and it simply sparkles." -Greg Haymes, The Times Union
"Eric Margan's songs and aesthetic are from another time: His musical influences seem drawn entirely from before he was born. His jazz-leaning, ornate, orchestral pop is unlike anything that's come out of the Capital Region in as long as we can remember, and the band's busy gig schedule has amassed them a devoted, even defensive, fan base. Trust us: This band will be going places." -John Brodeur, Metroland
Eric Margan and the Red Lions will begin touring this spring in support of Midnight Book. The confirmed list of shows is as follows:
February 13, The College of Saint Rose, Albany, NY February 21, (PRE-CD RELEASE SHOW) The Bowery Poetry Club, New York, NY March 5, Muddy Cup, Albany, NY March 13, (CD RELEASE SHOW) Valentines, Albany, NY March 17, Banjo Jims, New York, NY March 18-22, SXSW Music Festival, Austin, TX March 30, The Living Room, New York, NY April 3, Valentines Upstairs, Albany, NY April 4, Bard College, Annadale-on-Hudson, NY
More dates will be released at Eric Margan
Eric Margan MP3
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