Garage Barrage | Contributed Photo by Ian McKenyon
By Juan R Govea
Described as Avant-garde Rock, the group Garage Barrage will release their mind altering and genre bending self-titled garage album August 2. Amidst the more than 100 Bandcamp tracks contributing to the 14 album releases since the group has been together (2017) with their first 11-track album titled We Had A Fire! We’re Open! The expected self-titled debut album has attained to a crowd of listeners recently with a few prerelease songs available on digital platforms, and an accompanying music video for track 3 of the debut album’s, “Mr. Wolfy.”
Fort Worth’s Funky Town Podcast’s host Jeffery Lord attained to the group’s recognition welcoming the Fort Worthians to the local podcast stream. Drummer Ranger Parrish and vocalist McKenyon said Lord somewhat pivoted the movement for the group’s popularity leading to the debut.
The groups expansive discography of garage recordings and fun experimental rock ballads were recorded on a whim and have been categorized as experimental tracks, which include past albums such as a Christmas single featuring Fort Worth hip-hop artist Juma Spears released this past December.
Several 2019 FW Weekly Awards later, the group has been floored with attention and appreciation for their material, which is more than surprising and humbling for guitarist and vocalist Ian McKenyon saying, “The group played their first gig to the Fort Worth crowd in September of last year, we didn’t expect the attention we’ve gotten.”
The Garage Barrage momentum has taken the group’s altered genre above and beyond starting in the garage of the DFW suburbs as a well put together experimental band taking the stage at Main at South Side and other Fort Worth venues like Lola’s Saloon.
“All the songs on the album were done in one take while picking a few to improve on, for the most part the garage lyrics have been the same and instrumentally polished,” drummer Parrish noted.
Garage Barrage Album art by: Chris Goodrich
The group plans to collaborate with Fort Worth hip-hop artists Spears for another separate hip-hop release and Phantomelo front man William Rakkar is also said to contribute in future projects. The group says they are happy to oblige with local artists engaging in the DFW music mainstream.
En La Calle was granted a prerelease private stream of the album and listeners can be assured to expect unique melodies mixed with several rhythmically dramatic tracks that might seem more than eerie to new listeners attaining to the garage like merit, but keeping an original taste to those with a somewhat abstract palate.
The 10 Tracks on the upcoming release were somewhat improvised as well and reworked keeping the original lyrics, according to guitarist McKenyon saying, “If you don’t like one track you’ll like another.” The intro to next months release sets the stage for the strange and interesting. Starting with the first track “Shopping Mall Graveyard” and continuing with brash guitar and vocals of Ian McKenyon, Jon Lanier on bass who provided the vocals for the latest “Mr. Wolfy” release with accompanying catchy synth beats of Megan McKenyon on Keys/Wurlitzer and FW Weekly award winner for best drummer, Ranger Parrish. The group keeps a collective sub-conscious in the garage rock like atmosphere, where the group’s music is composed and framed from.
Track titles like “Won’t Fit”, which describes the aggravation of changing and exchanging clothing with a counterpart may be lyrically humorous to the listener, which is what McKenyon says keeps the fun grunge-like atmosphere framing an awkward variant to most experimental groups in DFW.
The album strikes a heavy chord resonating issues of disbelief and caustic circumstances that leads the listener to a subjective altered realm, as well a glimpse of deep clarity to subjective situations lending to the album’s 10 tracks. McKenyon states not all Garage Barrage tracks made it passed the inclusive chopping block of the self-titled album, but states the group kept most of the original lyrics the same as birthed from the garage, which has somewhat become a routine explanation to listeners who McKenyon states have asked about new material responding, “The album is like Texas weather, sometimes its good and sometimes not so great.”
Recorded at Cloudland Studios in Fort Worth, TX and engineered by Joe Tacke and Rebekah Elizabeth (Mean Motor Scooter) and mixed by Tacke at One Horn Studios in Fort Worth, TX and mastered by Grammy winner Jordan Richardson at Electric Barryland, Fort Worth, TX. One can hope the garage like effects carries the load of altered sounds and heavy riffs that the group has on the shelf for their next album. The group is set to release their new album with a release party August 3 at Fort Worth venue Main at South Side.