Mojave Desert-based band Starlight Cleaning Co. (Rachel Dean and Tim Paul Gray) seamlessly blend cosmic country and '80s alt-pop on the stellar "Sooner Than You Learn," the latest release from their forthcoming self-titled album (out May 21). "'Sooner Than You Learn' examines the helpless feelings of being caught in the riptide of self-medication and self-destruction," the band tells Wide Open Country. "'Striking like a match just shy of the burn' depicts the human recklessness so many of us fall victim to.
The band's debut album was recorded at Dean and Gray's home studio, Starlight Sound, and was produced by Bart Davenport (The Bedazzled, The Loved Ones, The Kinetics) and engineered by L.A.'s "indie king" Joel Jerome. The late Neal Casal, an influential singer-songwriter and a mentor and friend to the band, also contributed his guitar work to the album. "This record is a reflection of our life together as well as the individual paths that led us here: the struggles, uncertainty, the hopefulness and love," Dean said in a statement. "We hope that it resonates with others in their lives and brings us together as we all seem to deal with these common themes. We dedicate this album, in loving memory, to our dear friend Neal Casal."