Nathan K. has unpacked some ghosts, some of them good, some of them bad, and some of them just awkward, but all of them get addressed, nonetheless and with a poignant earnestness, here; Methodist Girls is the soundtrack of a songwriter reflecting while being reflective, letting you inside as well as just exploding outward.
The K. stands for our Ann Arbor-ite’s given name, Klages. He’d recently helped his mother move out of the house in which he grew up. “I’m not so glad (that) I visited …back here…” he sings on “Most Birthdays” with his distinct voice, a nasally thing that wisps along with a soft chill like a sleepy autumnal breeze. How do you not write a record when, after digging through all the manuscripts and childish artifacts of your past, you become flush with so many disparate emotions – rewinding, reminding, but not necessarily trying to forget, just, trying to dissect, through song, with an acoustic guitar and rolling strings, light percussive claps and some warming chimes, more orchestral-pop than the folk/country vibe of his first two records.
“I had this vision to make the record sound like something akin to “Eleanor Rigby” by The Beatles,” Nathan K. said. “Darin Rajabian (of Nightlife) and I recorded this in St. Joseph between my tours with Stepdad, back in the middle of the winter. We were finishing the Nightlife record just before and we had a lot of time to discuss how we wanted (Methodist Girls) to sound during the much needed breaks from the studio. I think we did a good job of creating this lush, big sounding…but…also still very intimate feeling acoustic pop record.”
He finds all these notebooks filled with naïve, blunt love songs to the girls he met at summer camp, knowing, now, as an adult male churning through his 20’s, that these coming-of-age blips from his past must have meant something to him, then, so that now, they could or should, mean just as much. That’s why he and Rajabian spent so much time discussing, arranging and recording these songs, going so far as to meticulously research preamps and different recording techniques.
Well, they also took their time because those Stepdad tours forced them to stop and start, here and there. But, there’s a palpable carefulness in the songwriter and producer’s crafting of these songs.
“As a songwriter it was nice to look back at things I wasn't afraid to say, mostly because I didn't know any better, and that had a huge effect on my writing for this record- saying and sharing things I never thought i would say in my music- it's my most personal music I’ve ever made.”
Sloppy Love video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xke-qpJ-a4E
Happier Things video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dL8JpMR7cig
Album will be available on CD (via bandcamp) and digital (itunes, bandcamp, amazon, spotify)