The debut album, Celestial Electric, from the new band project creatively titled “AM & Shawn Lee” was released on Sept. 6 on ESL. The band launched their tour last week, as special guests touring as support for Thievery Corporation and performing their own headlining dates. Later on they’ll join up with Fool’s Gold for a handful of co-headlining shows on the East Coast. Today they share two tracks from the album (cleared for posting) – one original and one cover song. “Somebody Like You” is a bright, shuffling love song and “Jackie Blue” is a cover of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils hit from 1974 – check out the original version here.
You can now check out the band’s full archived session for KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic here — AM & Shawn Lee also recently compiled an exclusive 20 minute mix for Sirius Satellite Radio’s Chill channel which will be airing throughout the next week.
Celestial Electric finds L.A.-based indie-pop auteur AM and London-based groovemaster/experimentalist Lee pooling their talents to create a unique brand of electro-soul that achieves seamless pop perfection, while mining a startlingly broad array of stylistic influences. The resulting blend of heartfelt, warmly melodic songcraft and vivid, inventive soundscapes underlines the artists’ abiding love for all manner of vintage genres, encompassing pop, soul, funk, jazz, Brazilian tropicalia, Turkish psychedelia, and soundtracks and library music from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s.
Celestial Electric’s sleek, boundary-pushing approach is reflected on such uplifting tunes as the insightful generational anthem “Dark Into Light,” the bittersweetly soulful “City Boy” and the hauntingly intimate “Can’t Figure It Out,” which merge irresistible melodicism with deeply distinctive grooves. Elsewhere, “The Signal” demonstrates the duo’s penchant for exotic, eclectic arrangements, suggesting an ’80s Bollywood synth-pop dance party, while the swaggeringly funky instrumental “Callahan” (named in honor of Clint Eastwood’s ’70s cop anti-hero Dirty Harry) conjures up a bracingly atmospheric vibe a la Lalo Schifrin, while adding a dollop of futuristic electronic melody. The twosome’s irresistible pop sensibility also drives their effervescent reading of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils’ 1974 hit “Jackie Blue”.
09/16 Oakland, CA Fox Theater* http://bit.ly/slamoakland
09/19 Boston, MA Middle East # http://tktwb.tw/slamboston
09/20 Philadelphia, PA Kung Fu Necktie http://ticketf.ly/slamphilly
09/21 Washington, DC Black Cat^ http://bit.ly/slamdc
09/22 Mercury Lounge, NYC, NY^ http://bit.ly/slamnyc
09/23 Rochester, NY Lovin’ Cup # http://tktwb.tw/slamrochester
09/28 Los Angeles, CA Audio Absinthe Presents at the Troubadour $ http://ticketf.ly/slamla
# = AM & Shawn Lee headlining shows
* = w/ Thievery Corporation
^ = co-headlining with Fool’s Gold
$ = w/ Wax Poetics’ Adrian Younge Presents Venice Dawn Opening