Is it Nashville, Tennessee or maybe more Austin Texas? In any case it’s obvious where Okieson get their inspiration. But this heavy atmospheric country-noir doesn’t hail from America but sprouts from and smoulders in a polder near Nijmegen, a city in the east of the Netherlands. Think singer-songwriter, think Howe Gelb or Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy style with a hint of Neil Young and there it is: ‘Tomorrow’s gone’, Okieson’s debut album, released by Silvox. The voice of front man Sebastiaan van Bijlevelt sounds shaped by bars full of smoke and whisky and it takes you on this journey. His background as a sound-sculpturedesigner comes across in strong melodies which are kept in check by Floris de Jonge, a former deathmetal drummer, who switched from fast, furious and heavy pounding to sensitive and atmospheric drumming and a harmonious second voice. Bass guitarist Ruben Trimbach also finds musical inspiration as part of a DJ-collective. Co-founder of the band, Paul van Gogh, provides adventurous guitarharmonies with Sebastiaan. On their album they get support, among others, from Bartjan Baartmans on lapsteelguitar, who also mixed the album. Where the album is intimate, the live gigs are something else. Songs come alive in this setting in a whole new way. Let yourself get carried away at one of the gigs of the oncoming tour. Already one of the big surprises of 2008. ‘We go on and on. The fire is burning and tomorrow’s gone.’ Okieson – Tomorrow’s gone’ 2008/SIL195
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