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Gregory Uhlmann

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FRESH CUTS: On “Goosebumps,” Gregory Uhlmann Stretches Time

photo credit: Jacob Boll

L.A.-based art-folk auteur Gregory Uhlmann (guitarist and vocalist with local act Fell Runner) has today released “Goosebumps,” an atmospheric one-off single—following up on his Neighborhood Watch album of last July—on Topshelf Records.

 

The art-folk track begins humbly with a simple muted acoustic drum fill, announcing the entry of two strummed nylon-string guitars and an hypnotic, elliptic bass line. The atmosphere of the recording is warm and open, quickly inviting the listener into its center.

Uhlmann’s voice is alternately deeply resonant and choir-boy pure, with a bit of breathiness, especially during the chorus, where his voice fades into a deep ocean of reverb on a single syllable. The addition of a gooey, tremoloed synth about halfway through the song changes the flavor but does so tastefully, as does the entrance of plucked instruments, pitched somewhere between mallets and a ticking clock, along with oceanic synth pads that resemble a school of shimmering sea creatures.

By the time the swelling single-note guitar lines double Uhlmann’s vocal melody and a lone, perfectly-timed cymbal crash signals the conclusion of the song, the listener has been taken on a unique aural journey, where contrasting timbres that shouldn’t fit well together still somehow manage to do so. Gabe Hernandez

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PREMIERE: Barra Brown - "Poem No. 8: The Thread (feat. Gregory Uhlmann)"

*photo by Reed Ricker

Conceptually speaking, the basis of Barra Brown's Poem Project is something to pay much attention to. Coming out on Cavity Search next month, Poem Project takes Barra Brown's single "Poem" and sees it interpreted by eight different musicians from across the country. From members of groups like Ages and Ages, The Shins and Radiation City among others, Poem Project's participating artists breathe new life into an already amazing song.

Under a set of specific parameters, each artist was allowed to play with the original structure of the song while providing their own lyrics as part of the transformation. The one of particular focus today is from Los Angeles folk musician Gregory Uhlmann, who produced the softly intimate folk of "Poem No. 8: The Thread." Uhlmann's orchestration has made for a beautifully minimal track, led by rich vocals and slow, warm instrumentation.

Listen to "Poem No. 8: The Thread" below and be on the lookout for Poem Project's release April 7.

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