Full Time Hobby
À l’origine du groupe, Alexi Erenkov, multi instrumentiste et songwriter accompli, demande à son épouse percussionniste, Alison Alderdice, et au bassiste Richard Laws de le rejoindre. L’objectif : un folk-pop lo-fi , quasi garage, imaginé en écoutant de l’exotica à la Martin Denny, des compositeurs italiens tel Vittorio Impiglia ou du jazz West Coast.
Composé sur un bateau dans la baie de San Francisco, enregistré à Portland, le résultat est d’une beauté sans fioritures, pure et immédiate, servie par le timbre mélancolique de Erenkov et convoquant les plus belles heures de Devendra Banhart. En témoigne l’élégance de “Singing Desperately”, “Alone Again” ou “Find I Forget”. @Rolling Stone
“The most important factor when choosing bandmates is love,” says the Saxophones’ Alexi Erenkov. “Do you love the people you’re playing with? If so, everyone is going to be feeling relaxed and confident.” This approach is a useful one to have when your wife, Alison Alderdice, is in your band.
Whilst the Saxophones began as the solo project of Erenkov – a project that was loosely started over a decade ago but gained full momentum and dedication in recent years – he wanted to bring in some primitive drum and percussion playing and couldn’t think of anyone more suited than his wife. “I wanted to share the band with her,” he says. “Plus, I would be devastated if I had to leave for weeks at a time to tour without her.”
Erenkov was studying jazz but became disenchanted with its direction. “I was frustrated by the lack of emotion I perceived in much of the music I was listening to and I couldn’t find a way to make my studies meaningfully connect to contemporary culture,” he says. His discontent led him to learn guitar and to begin singing. He learnt his playing from studying the likes of Daniel Johnston. “I loved how much songwriters could convey with so little technical skill,” he recalls. “In comparison to the work I was doing in University, spending many hours on big band arrangements and studying jazz theory, songwriting seemed like the most liberating thing.” Thankfully Erenkov had a voice to match his newfound playing style and songwriter ambitions, his deeply immersive and emotive vocals sitting in that unique register between rich and high, recalling the likes of M. Ward or Timber Timbre. Jazz isn’t completely absent from the project however, and Erenkov views the outlet as “A hybrid of the love I have for jazz and the love I have for simple direct expressions of feeling.”
If You’re on the Water EP came in 2016 with a knock-out title track that was inspired by a tumultuous time over a summer week that saw suicide, the transition of a relationship, and Erenkov and his father being involved in a nearly fatal boating accident. Thankfully things have calmed down in his life since then and Erenkov and Alderdice have remained focused on making this album and preparing for the upcoming birth of their first child.