Lafayette singer-songwriter Mike Reeb’s new album is Turn Your Ear, due November 1. The album features four songs, with half of all sales to be donated to Family Promise of Greater Lafayette, a non-profit voted by fans to receive the funds.
Part introspective, part subtly defiant, Reeb’s latest rings of Beatles influence, 70’s songwriters, and a bit of a power-pop.
Reeb handled much of the recording himself in Chicago, and brought in a few friends to round out a couple of the tracks. I tracked Mike down as he was getting ready for a record store show at Indy CD and Vinyl in Indy on Saturday.
ROB: Describe your recording process.
MIKE REEB: I tracked every part of all four songs in my basement at home. I used a hybrid of analog and digital equipment. Since I didn’t have a deadline, I took my time recording these tracks. Recording about three full days each month, it ended up taking me about five months to finish the songs. I produced [the album] myself.
The songs were mixed by Tim Rusin at JBTV in Chicago and mastered by Brian Zieske at Gallery of Carpet Recording in Chicago.
Listen to “Turn Your Ear”
ROB: Did other musicians contribute to Turn Your Ear?
MR:Like on Breaking, I played most of the instruments myself (acoustic, electric, drums, bass, synth, tambourine, vocals, backing vocals, etc). I did have my electric guitarist, Duane Chew, play electric on “Turn Your Ear” and “Anything”.
There were also a few local friends who lent their voices for the bridge on “Turn Your Ear”. Jordan Banks, the frontman from the Lafayette band YEARS, wrote the synth parts for “Just Walk Away”.
ROB: Highlights of the recording process? Anything extra-memorable?
MR: When my friends and I tracked the vocals for the bridge “Turn Your Ear”, the five of us stood around one microphone to capture it. It was the closest I’ve felt to being Brian Wilson.
ROB: Where can fans see you perform your newest work?
MR: I’ve gotten really tired of playing in venues, so I’m focusing on house shows. A few weeks ago, I played at a barbeque on Indy’s east side. We grilled, drank Sun King, and had a great time.
MR: All four of the songs on Turn Your Ear were written over three years ago; I just didn’t know what to do with them until now. I knew they wouldn’t work on my 2010 album, Breaking, so it feels really good to finally share these songs with everyone.
Anyone who pre-orders the album (digital, physical, or both) will get an immediate digital download of the title track.