Over the Silvery Lake
London-based psych folk outfit The Hanging Stars present their debut album, Over the Silvery Lake. Blending folk pastorals with swampy '60s Americana, they sound like the missing link between the California desert sun and the gray skies of London. Fronted by London-based songwriter, singer, and guitarist Richard Olson (The See See, The Eighteenth Day of May), The Hanging Stars are essentially a loose collective of people who weave together a blissed-out psychedelic tapestry. In 2015, the band released two critically acclaimed 7"s via The Great Pop Supplement; three tracks from these releases appear on Over the Silvery Lake. The Line of Best Fit premiered "Golden Vanity" and declared, "you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd just unearthed a rare deep cut from the late sixties / early seventies boom of psychedelia infused Americana," while The Guardian called "The House on The Hill" "a hazy, desert-dream of a song, nicely sharpened with steely-eyed guitars, Mersey-laced harmonies and just a whiff of the Gun Club." The Hanging Stars picked up a good amount of support at BBC Radio 6 Music, and "The House on the Hill" scored a much-coveted 10/10 from John Robb on Steve Lamacq's Roundtable. There are a number of allusions to nature and the weather on the album, inspired in part by the contrasting surroundings in which it was produced. The band's fascination with Americana led them to record some of the material in the US, laying down some of the parts at Battle Tapes in Nashville (Lambchop, Paperhead) and at VisionQuest Studios in Los Angeles with Rob Campanella. Based on Campanella's work with The Quarter After, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Beachwood Sparks, and The Tyde, the band knew he was a perfect match to capture their sound. They even had San Franciscan legend Christof Certik step in on lead guitar for a couple of tracks. Following the LA recordings, a trip to the Californian desert provided the core notion of what they wanted to produce; a shard of light onto which they clung while recording the rest of the album in the significantly more rain-soaked atmosphere of Walthamstow, London, under the watchful eye of Brian O'Shaughnessy at Bark Studio (The Clientele, Comet Gain, My Bloody Valentine). As the band explain, "Ultimately we hope you can hear both the sand and the rain in this record."