Year performed at 4 Peaks:
Jay Cobb Anderson (vocals, lead guitar, harmonica) / Kellen Asebroek (vocals, rhythm guitar, piano) / Mimi Naja (vocals, mandolin, electric & acoustic guitar) / Jeff Leonard (bass) / Tyler Thompson (drums, banjo)
Fruition’s newest album, Wild As The Night, conveys the emotions of our darkest, and sometimes weakest, moments. Influenced equally by acoustic music as well as rock ‘n’ roll, the eclectic, after-hours vibe comes naturally to the Portland, Oregon-based band. Their unmistakable vocal blend first revealed itself in 2008 when Anderson tagged along with Asebroek and Naja for an afternoon of busking in Portland. Since that time, they have opened shows for the Wood Brothers, Greensky Bluegrass, and Jack Johnson, and appeared at festivals like Telluride Bluegrass, Bonnaroo, and DelFest. Wild As The Night follows the band’s acclaimed Tucker Martine-produced 2018 album, Watching It All Fall Apart.
The album’s first single, “Wild As The Night,” provides perhaps the album’s most beautiful moment, with vocals from Naja evoking the midnight grief of letting a relationship go. It was released with the announcement of the album, along with the track’s accompanying music video.
Wild As The Night opens with the rollicking and pulsating “Forget About You,” setting the tone of the record as a whole; commiserating in sorrows and lifting spirits. “Sweet Hereafter” follows the album’s self-titled first single with an entrancing drum and piano loop that could be equally at home on a James Blake record. The organic beat gives way to thick repeating harmonies, leaving the listener wanting more after a subtle fade to silence. The album picks back up, tempo-wise, with a quick rock and roll study in city living with “Raining In The City” before it dives back into more classic Fruition territory with a campfire celebration of the Oregon Coast in “Manzanita Moonlight.” “Don’t Give Up On Me”’s seductive groove dips back into the commiseration with the final verse lamenting, “All the world is just empty without somebody to love.”
“For me, I’ve just always hoped that people relate to the music, whether it’s a certain chord movement that lifts their spirit or comforts their sorrow, or a lyric that speaks to them like it was written for them,” Asebroek says. “This music comes from places of vulnerability and I hope people can take their guard down a little while resonating with it.”
Recorded at Silo Sound Studio in Denver, Wild As The Night captures the band’s mindset in the midst of relentless touring. “We were exhausted, but musically firing on all cylinders,” says Thompson, who shares production credit with the band on the new project. “It’s extremely diverse Americana, with a focus on great songwriting and harmonies. We weren’t going for a particular sound, just something that’s honest to our live sound along with a few tricks we learned from our last producer, Tucker Martine.”
With a renewed focus on harnessing the energy of the live experience, Wild As The Night allows listeners to get a glimpse of these longtime friends doing what they do best on stage, whether they’re opening for the Wood Brothers, Greensky Bluegrass, and Jack Johnson, or playing at festivals like Telluride Bluegrass, Bonnaroo, and DelFest.
“Something that has always tied our variable styles together is the honesty in the songwriting, the attention paid toward what is genuinely and deeply catchy, not superficially so,” Asebroek says. “Vocal harmonies have also always been a unifying tool for our band. The Fruition sound has always been about being more than the sum of our parts.”