Nashville, Tennessee is home to some of the finest guitarists and pedal steel players around. These are the guys being hired by major acts to back them up in the studio and make their albums sound perfect. So what happens when a pedal steel player and a guitarist decide to strike out on their own? If you’re talking about Steelism, the answer is very good things. When they’re not playing in backing bands or putting in studio session work, the duo of guitarist Jeremy Fetzer and pedal steel player Spencer Cullum are crafting their own mostly instrumental songs or coming up with ways to put an original twangified spin on the songs of others.
On June 23, Steelism will follow up their critically-acclaimed debut album 615 To Fame with ism. The album will be released on their own imprint Intoxicating Sounds, distributed by Thirty Tigers. Even though your mind may go straight to country music when you know a pedal steel is involved, that is not exactly the case with ism. This time around Cullum and Fetzer found inspiration in mid-century modern design, early Brian Eno productions and 70s film scores. There are also vocals on a handful of songs on the album courtesy of talented Nashville artists like Andrew Combs and Ruby Amanfu. The usual Steelism rhythm section of Jon Radford (drums), Jon Estes (bass), and Robbie Crowell (formerly of Deer Tick) on keys are heard throughout the record. Legendary studio musician Charlie McCoy (Bob Dylan’s Blonde on Blonde) can be heard on vibraphone and harmonica and a lush string quartet provide the finishing instrumental touches.
Today Glide Magazine is excited to premiere the instrumental track “Re-Member”. The song has a cool, flowing sound that almost feels like a psychedelic 70s film score with lush orchestration and plenty of twang. Cullum and Fetzer sum it up best when explaining exactly where they were coming from with this tune:
“An instrumental reflection on nostalgia and the first piece we recorded for the album. Elements of AIR, David Axelrod’s Songs of Innocence, and Pink Floyd’s Obscured by Clouds were noted in the production to set the sonically rich tone of ism. However, we wanted the story of the album to begin with just the entrance of pedal steel and guitar, which is how Steelism began.”
Steelism release ism on June 23rd. For more music and info visit steelismmusic.com.