In the early summer of 2011 FIRESʼ Danny Nicoletto began to make plans to record the bandʼs next EP. The only thing settled was this new recording had to capture the more raw/aggressive side of FIRES, something that was emerging while playing live as a full band over the last year. Who exactly could come in to assist in the recording was still up in the air when the band were asked by BRAID (Polyvinyl) to open their new album release show for an EP they had finished with longtime friend and producer, J. Robbins.
J had been in several bands that FIRES bandmates Danny & Ryan Nicoletto had been fans of. More importantly he had produced and mixed some of FIRES most influential records: Jawbreaker, Jets to Brazil, Braid, Jawbox and Hey Mercedes to be specific. Five weeks after the BRAID show the band was in “Magpie Cage Studio” in downtown Baltimore, MD with Robbins creating what became the Echo Sounds EP.
Longtime friend and bassist James Scott (Matthew, Populist Recording) flew from Chicago for the sessions, and for the first time FIRES tracked the songs together live in one room, straight to 2-inch tape. The result is a richer more organic sound for the band which could not have been achieved recording digitally as most bands now do.
The title Echo Sounds reflects an underlying, almost creepy, feel that FIRES set out to achieve using old analog echo chambers, real plate reverbs, and analog delays. And while the rule of the day was ʻgo analogʼ, the band was not afraid to mix in some modern effects. For example, the songs “Blood on Black” and “Amour” have main vocals run through Dannyʼs Memory Man guitar pedal; which proved to be exactly what the songs needed to achieve the desired effect.
With 2 EP’s now released independently, FIRES will be hitting the road in the fall of 2012 in support of the Echo Sounds EP and will prepare for a full length release in early 2013.
ECHO SOUNDS EP June 12, 2012
4. BLOOD ON BLACK