Quiet Holler's frontman Shadwick Wilde has released his opus of an album 'Forever Home', his first solo record in twelve years. Read on below to learn more about the record, recorded at Ken Coomer's Cartoon Moon studio in Nashville, TN.
“In a perfect world, many of these songs would become standards.” - Americana Highways
Louisville’s Shadwick Wilde has released his opus of an album Forever Home out today, produced by renowned Nashville drummer Ken Coomer (Billy Bragg, Will Hoge, Margo Price, Vance Joy, Al Green, Wilco, and Uncle Tupelo). The album is available on all digital platforms as well as on limited edition colored vinyl versions of the album.
Wilde cut his teeth as a guitarist in hardcore bands in his youth, and after spending time in San Francisco, and Havana, settled in his current home in Louisville, Kentucky, and began writing his own songs and forming the first iteration of Quiet Hollers. After the band’s 2013 rootsy- midwestern album I Am the Morning, the band worked at a relentless pace, releasing a record every two years, and producing content, all while rigorously touring the U.S. and Europe winning over crowds with their transcendent live shows. After a decade of this unforgiving cycle, Shadwick decided to get off the album release tour cycle merry-go-round and ushered in the most prolific writing period of his career. The result was the Quiet Hollers’ 2022 release Forever Chemicals and the stunning ten songs that comprise Forever Home recorded at Coomer’s Cartoon Moon studio in Nashville.
Working with Coomer was a practice in surrender for Wilde. In the past, Wilde’s recording process was a push for perfection, and with Coomer Wilde had to let go of the reins and succumb to Coomer's process of letting the songs unravel on their own. The result is ten stunning songs that are an exercise in finding contentment in the present, in lieu of the inevitable state of doom constantly looming in the background. The album opens with the acoustic guitar-driven song “Easy Rider,” which was the first single released from the album. When asked about the song Wilde told Folk Radio UK that he tried “to capture the truth of the ennui that can creep in when life becomes too peaceful or happy. Depression always wants to step in and throw things off balance, for me anyway.”
“Easy Rider” was followed by “Without You,” an existentialist love ballad examining the frailty of memory, the truth of impermanence, and our clinging to one another that Louisville Public Media called “... an emotional and almost cinematic journey,” then “Floating Away,” a song about the inevitable impermanence in love relationships that Rainbow Rodeo called a soft protest against mortality’s cruel interruption of love.” Both “Without You” and “Floating Away” are close to the demos and reflect Coomer’s signature style of minimalism of this album, recording live with minimal takes to preserve the emotion and spontaneity of the creative process. The album concludes with the title track “Forever Home,” which encompasses the dichotomy of family life and the life of an artist. “ I want to be at home with my partner and our beautiful child, surrounded by nature, away from the ugliness of our crumbling society,” Wilde told Under the Radar Magazine. “But I also want to be out in it, seeing it all— the beauty, the grime— rock and roll clubs, loud music, sweaty, imperfect humanity. I have been trying to find a way to do both. It’s hard to find balance. Sometimes I do want to burn it all to the ground, start fresh— and leave the wanderer’s life. But the pull is strong.”
Wilde has joked that this album was his ‘Waterworld,’ the colossal disaster of a movie that almost ruined Kevin Costner’s career. “ The parallels are difficult to ignore,” Wilde told Twangville. “ Both he and I nearly bankrupted ourselves to bring our apocalyptic visions into reality. I have been thinking and writing a lot about water these past few years; how Heraclitus said we can never step into the same river twice… both the human and the river being in a constant state of flux. Our bodies have roughly the same salinity as the ocean, the source of all life on Earth. I learned a lot of letting go, in the process of making this record. We all are in this river of time, everchanging. All we can do is row, row our little boat, gently down the stream– making small adjustments to our course, but ultimately heading toward the same destination: the ocean that is eternity, the infinite vastness of the cosmos. When the waves of this life come and knock us down, we have a tendency to forget that we too are the ocean, and that in fact, everything does come in waves.”
Shadwick has been on tour performing his solo material with the Quiet Hollers and will be playing an album release show presented by Louisville Public Media’s WFPK on September 30th before heading over to Europe to play Rootzz 2023 in the Netherlands.
Forever Home is available now on two special edition color ways!