Throughout the 90’s there were loads of acts falling loosely under the umbrella of “alternative rock” who could be found constantly touring throughout clubs across the country. Many of those acts became big, but most drifted into obscurity after never scoring that big hit song. After chugging away in the 90’s with a respectable run of near-hits, Mr. Henry decided to call it quits in 2000. Frontman Dave Slomin wasn’t happy to see the beloved indie rock act he fronted come to an end, but luckily that didn’t mean the end of his musical pursuits.
As aging rockers sometimes do, Slomin moved to New Jersey and started a family. Time passed and eventually he gathered some musical comrades and started a new band whose name was a nod to his old one: Waiting For Henry. This time around the sound Slomin conjured up was in the vein of alt-country acts like Jason Isbell, the Drive-By Truckers, and Whiskeytown. When the group started writing the follow-up to their 2013 debut Ghosts & Compromise, they wanted something that would enhance on the alt-country Americana sound they already had, but also something that made the songs more approachable and perhaps representative of the indie rock sound of Mr. Henry.
The band had the songs ready for their new album but were looking for something special that would bring them to life and match the emotion of the lyrics Slomin had penned, which he describes as “a little essay on how we escaped our early rock and roll years somewhat intact, and a bit of a roadmap for where to go from there.”
Enter Mitch Easter, the producer and engineer behind early albums from R.E.M. and Game Theory, among many others, and who was excited enough by what he heard from Waiting For Henry to come in as producer for their new album Town Called Patience, which comes out August 26th on Mighty Hudson Records. Easter understood Slomin’s sentiment, affirming, “This record is really heavy and emotional, which to me is just wonderful! We hear lots of music that sounds perfectly good, and just washes over us. Town Called Patience really does give me the chills, wow! I love that, I always want that definable thing that ‘gets to me,’ you know?”
Today we are excited to share one of the standout tracks off Town Called Patience, “Parsippany”, right here on Glide Magazine. The song marries the band’s alt-country aura with a punk rock edge and a catchy chorus that feels like a distinct nod to the rock bands of the 90’s. This makes sense considering that “Parsippany” is about Dave Slomin coming to terms with the breakup of his band Mr. Henry and moving onto a new family life outside the world of rock and roll. The band brought it into the studio as an Americana/country song but weren’t sure about the arrangement so they played it for Mitch Easter. Mitch immediately responded that he liked the song but that it wasn’t a country song, it was a punk song, so that is what it became, sort of.
Slomin offers his own backstory behind the song: ” One of the greatest truths in American history, is that when an American male marries a Jersey girl, he WILL settle in the great state of New Jersey. Yeah, Tom Waits had it right in that song he wrote, and Springsteen joyously commandeered. And ‘Parsippany’ is the ultimate backroads Jersey hometown. They even have a hotel on Route 80 built to look like an Irish Castle (in case drivers were ever to question Jersey’s power). It’s really a song about finding and balancing all the important truths, loves and connections in life… and about leaving an old rock band and starting a family.”
Town Called Patience is set for release on August 26. For more music and info from Waiting For Henry visit waitingforhenry.com.
Photo credit: Mitch Easter