LA’s Luke Top makes warm, enveloping music that feels intimate while expansive. The sounds can come from anywhere – are these birds? Is the percussion here tiki or African or Western or Country-Western? How many parts are in this harmony? Trying to place the parts is fun. At the same time, the songs’ hug-able friendliness keeps the exercise from being pure science. On the first listen, you could swear these have been your favorites for ages.
Friends is an apt name for Luke’s debut album. He’s been a prolific collaborator, touring and recording with such artists as Cass Mccombs, Papercuts, and Foreign Born. With Foreign Born guitarist Lewis Pesacov, he co-founded the Afro-Hebrew dance band Fool’s Gold . Naturally, his friends also contributed to the album.
Of course, I personally relate to Luke’s work on more levels than just the music. I’ve been lucky to have worked with him as well; he engineered all of my recordings. During sessions, we’d riff in terrible, dated Hebrew slang, which I take to be the sound of two expat Israelis procrastinating.
He’s such a talented writer, performer, and sound bro. Go see him play, and stick around for Peter Björn and John. I’m excited to see what’s next!
Luke Top – “Lord, Save Me From This Valley”
4/27 – Echo Park – The Echo (free show as Fool’s Gold closing out the band’s April residency)
4/29 – NYC – Webster Hall w/ Peter Bjorn and John
4/30 – Brooklyn – Music Hall of Williamsburg w/ Peter Bjorn and John
5/1- Philadelphia – World Cafe w/ Peter Bjorn and John
Friends will come out June 23, 2009 on Slow Death Records.
Visit Luke on MySpace, or visit Fool’s Gold on MySpace
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