|02/13/09||West Palm Beach, Florida|
New York’s Andy Chase of Brookville, a musician and producer best known as member of the band Ivy, is joining today’s top tier of progressive artists who are taking complete control of their craft. With a highly anticipated new project, a freshly launched label, and a fully stocked NYC recording studio, Andy Chase’s revered music career has just begun.
Flaunting a sleek and slender Euro-romantic sound, Brookville is a beautifully rendered project that allows Chase to balance his talent for songcraft with his love for rich sonic landscapes and textures. It is in some senses a “solo record,” on which Chase was free to explore the type of languid, atmospheric music that was only hinted at within the tight pop framework of Ivy’s records. But the many contributing musicians on the album – including James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins) Eric Matthews (Cardinal), Jean-Pierre Ensuque (Autour de Lucie), Jon Skibic (Gigolo Aunts), Danny Wienkauf (They Might Be Giants), producer-programmer Michael Hampton, and many others – suggest that the making of Brookville’s Wonderfully Nothing was also a collaborative effort that left ample room for experimentation and exploration.
Andy Chase likens the Brookville recording process to careful sound layering, bolstered by his cohesive overall vision. According to Andy, “I would go into the studio, put on headphones, and just layer sounds and samples on top of each other and create the song that way, but underneath a lot of the sonic textures there’s still, at the core, a songwriter there. It’s a pastiche of sounds, but you still get the feeling that there’s a driving force in control.”
Besides co-owning Stratosphere Sound recording studio in New York with James Iha and Ivy bandmate Adam Schlesinger, Andy Chase has co-produced and co-written all of the music on Ivy’s three critically acclaimed albums, as well as Ivy’s score for the recent Farrelly Brothers movie Shallow Hal. As a producer, he has enjoyed success with the French pop group Tahiti 80, whose debut album Puzzle was a critical and commercial hit around the world (#1 in Japan).
Despite his many accomplishments, however, if you ask Andy about his inspiration for starting Brookville, he’ll humbly point to the musicians around him. So says Andy, “a while back, I had Eric Matthews, who plays trumpet and sings, do horn parts on Tahiti 80, then Ivy, then on another song I had written that didn’t have a home. His reaction to that one song made me take the idea of a new band more seriously. And now that I’ve started Brookville, I realize that a lot of the credit goes to him, as well as James [Iha].”
But perhaps the best lesson Andy’s learned from his experiences is the most humble of all: “Just don’t try. Just make it nothing. But when you’re making it nothing, make it Wonderfully Nothing.”