Following up their previously-released single, "My Darlin,'" Victoria, BC's new nostalgic Folk-Americana group, CALICO, are ready to release their debut LP, Under a Sudden Sun.
Named after that magical moment when the first light of the day peaks out from behind the hills, Under a Sudden Sun is a tranquil and meditative experience.
Guided by the soothing voice of lead singer-songwriter, Tony Cecchetti, Under a Sudden Sun seamlessly weaves its listeners in and out of consciousness.
The album begins with "A Little Light," a chill jam about the curiosity of life, featuring Bob Dylan-esque poetic verse, soft acoustic guitar, bright lead licks, and a thrilling, yet calming drum beat. It's a perfect opener to set the tone of Under a Sudden Sun.
Soon after comes "American Gold," a reflective track about the tumultuous situation in the United States during Donald Trump's presidency. Tony saw his home country moving away from the golden rule, the basic ideal many elders have always taught their children—do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
"This song is about how the colour of your skin determines how you are viewed and treated. It is about racial and social inequality," Tony says. "It is about a country so consumed by its own strength that it has lost sight of human dignity and decency."
Next comes "Autumn's Haze," a track that feels ancestral with its percussion and subtle slide guitar. Then the bass kicks in, putting the listener into a hazy trance. The song is inspired by a piece of art Tony was gifted, featuring a superimposed photo of a fallen tree in a lake on a piece of cedar. For Tony, it represented an "unfinished dream" and had a correlation with Heaven and Hell.
As we leave one of the most turbulent years in recent history, the lead single "Hold Your Head Up" shines as the folk-rock tune we all desperately need. Tony was also able to collaborate with Dave Beckingham of Hey Ocean!—who composed the beautiful chord progression on the track.
"'Hold Your Head Up' is about perseverance, overcoming adversity, and facing hardships and challenges head-on," Tony says. "I hope it brings hope to those in need of a brighter day."
Under a Sudden Sun comes to a fulfilling close with "Oh My Mind," a calming track about searching for that special something or someone to fill the void.
"The song is about love and knowing that there is a soul out there that is also searching for companionship and longing for connection to journey through this chaotic life with, and the hope and knowing that those two souls will one day meet," Tony says.
CALICO is a band birthed by the pandemic. In early 2020, as his six-month-old daughter slept, Tony decided to record all of the songs he had written over the years in his living room. He soon looked to his friend Chris Couto to produce the songs and add percussion. Tony and Chris were used to playing the songs together as they had played them live to accompany yoga classes in Squamish, BC.
Soon after, Tony and Chris began CALICO and the two recruited their friends JeanSe Le Doujet (Bass) and Will Lloyd (Electric Guitar)—to add their own parts to each song. Recording Under a Sudden Sun was a completely organic experience, as no firm direction was given on any song, letting every member add their own musical flavour from miles away.
The result is a one-of-a-kind album that begs to be listened to front-to-back and on repeat.