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Galen Kipar Project’s new album the Scenic Route is set for Asheville release on Saturday May 29th at the Lexington Ave Brewery. The show starts at 9pm.

“Each song on Routes is carefully orchestrated and worked with the tender care of a master painter at his easel. Kipar elevates this eight-song collection far beyond standard singer/songwriter fare, wringing emotion and texture from each song and adding layers of interest with rich, resonant percussion and an intricate dance of string tones, states Mtn Xpress writer Alli Marshall.  Click here to read the album review.

Check out this great interview in this week’s Mountain Xpress:

Taking the Scenic Route

Galen Kipar Project returns with a fluid, effortless new album

by Dane Smith in Vol. 16 / Iss. 44 on 05/26/2010 rocknrolldane@gmail.com

Mountain Xpress www.mountainx.com

The aptly titled fourth effort from Asheville’s symphonic-folk outfit The Galen Kipar Project is loaded with images of mountains, rivers, forests and streams, and backed by lush arrangements, fluid vocals and Appalachian instrumentation that bring to life what is essentially a musical portrait of Western North Carolina.

And that, says Kipar, is no accident. The album’s title is not only a literal reference to the years the band has spent on the road, but also a reflection on the way they’ve approached their career.

Water signs: The album has a theme of water and currents that Kipar says was unintentional, but not surprising.

“We feel like we’ve taken the scenic route as a band,” he explains. “We’ve been playing for a while, and we’re still trucking along. And Western North Carolina is such a beautiful area. We couldn’t ask for a better place to drive around and play music, where 75 percent of your job is driving. It definitely reflects on this area.”

What was less intentional, he admits with a laugh, is the album’s underlying theme of water and currents. Nearly every track on The Scenic Route mentions, whether in passing or in the song title itself, to some form of water. But Kipar insists that the repeated imagery was pure coincidence, or at least “subconscious regurgitation.”

“It kind of was by accident,” Kipar says in a way that suggests he expected this to come up. “I really didn’t recognize it at first, and then someone said, ‘Hey, there’s a lot of references to water on this album.’ Then it became apparent. But for me personally, I am a water person. I’ve spent a lot of time near and on the water and I love it. There is a lot of inspiration that comes from water and currents and just being in that environment.

“I tried to come up with an album title that captured the parallels between music and the currents that you might find in water, or in moving water. But I didn’t nail it on the head. They always come after the fact.”

Nevertheless, the eight-song offering is, from start to finish, relaxed, easy, accessible and relatable, yet layered and dense at the same time. Kipar’s vocal delivery is bouncy but gentle, and his harmonica provides a down-home grittiness that balances the atmosphere of strings and flute, which is really the key to Kipar’s appeal. Somehow, he manages to convey the simplicity of folk through the complexities of jazz and classical arrangements, without losing sight of the message.

For his part, Kipar offers a simpler explanation.

“Often it starts out as a whistle, honestly,” he says. “Once you find that melody, those few couple of notes that really define the song, you can start to develop the other parts based on that original melody. Really, all I’m trying to do is develop that original melody and vary it —cover that entire territory, basically.”

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE: http://www.mountainx.com/ae/2010/052610taking_the_scenic_route

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Galen Kipar Project’s fourth album in five years, The Scenic Route, was recorded in Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville North Carolina-[Others who have recorded there include Donna the Buffalo, Avett Brothers, and Band of Horses]. Featuring eight songs, the album promises to satisfy the musical longings of loyal fans as well as the uninitiated.  It was mastered in NYC by Richard Morris Mastering (Iron and Wine, Nora Jones, Wiyos, Felise Brothers). The Scenic Route was published by Paper Sailer Publishing.  Click here for a song preview from the album.

Galen will be the featured musician on the Fret Knot Radio Hour on Tuesday, May 25th at Malaprop’s bookstore. Host Chris Weller will interview Galen and the audience will get the chance to hear a few acoustic songs during this free show!

The official CD release party for the new album is Saturday, May 29th at the LAB on Lexington Ave in Downtown Asheville.

Here is what WNC Magazine’s Michael Flynn has to say about GKP:

Music: Sound Travels

The Galen Kipar Project wants to take you on a scenic ride
Like countless artists in Western North Carolina, singer-songwriter Galen Kipar finds inspiration in this region’s compelling landscape. The force of a rushing river, the solitude of the wilderness, and the surprise of an October snowfall turn up in lyrics on the latest CD from Asheville’s Galen Kipar Project. Titled The Scenic Route, the eight-song album continues the band’s fusion of folk, jazz, and classical elements, creating a sound that’s intricate and memorable, sophisticated and relaxed. “Headed on down to the waterside, going to find a place to rest my mind,” Kipar sings in “Riversong,” which adds viola and electric guitar to the band’s acoustic core. Guitarist Kipar, eight-string guitar/bass player Jon Morrow, and drummer Jeremy Young all studied music at area colleges, and Kipar’s arrangements draw on his background in classical composition. The band’s fourth album in five years includes ace Asheville musicians contributing on flute, strings, lap steel, and piano. “It comes from an honest place,” Kipar says about the album, which the band will release May 29. No matter where you’re headed, The Scenic Route is a trip well worth taking.
Check out these other reviews about GKP (Click the links for the full write-up):
The Scenic Route is luminous and warm; Kipar’s vocals as light and syncopated as water cascading over rocks…Each song on Routes is carefully orchestrated and worked with the tender care of a master painter at his easel. Kipar elevates this eight-song collection far beyond standard singer/songwriter fare, wringing emotion and texture from each song and adding layers of interest with rich, resonant percussion and an intricate dance of string tones. He pushes the envelope of how many sounds can be introduced without reducing the sum to a fuzzy, sonic snarl.” ~Alli Marshall, Asheville’s Mountain Xpress
In Asheville, fans call his act a ‘small-scale symphony.’ It’s probably more like chamber folk/pop, sometimes reminiscent of Adrian Belew’s quieter moods.” ~Tad Dickens, Roanoke Times
“I was given a copy of his CD Why It’s Needed [2007]  … and I was hooked right away.” … “Strange, slightly other-worldly acoustic music sung in a sweet, slightly distracted voice. I think of it as a sort of American Primitive, with hits of Sandy Bull in the guitars, Brett Dennen in the voice, Donna the Buffalo in the rustic simplicity, and something altogether new in the wonderful orchestrations. I have heard this CD about four times all the way through since it hit my car’s CD player two days ago. One of the songs… made me cry the first time I heard it. In the words of Tina Fey, when I hear the sounds of this nearby world, I want to go to there.'” ~David Gans, KPFA’s Dead to the World, Host of Grateful Dead Hour (Audio Interview Paraphrased)

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