LA-based multi-instrumentalist rocker Graham Czach shares powerful anti-racism track "Can't See A Thing" featuring Angelo Moore of Fishbone out everywhere now. Accompanying the release, an official video featuring Czach and Moore is also out now. Tackling the heartbreaking and disturbing subject of racism that is still present -- and of course, institutionalized -- in our society, albeit the progress being made, the song and the video offer possibility, perspective and perseverance within the movement for real, sustainable change towards the goal of equality. The forthcoming genre-bending full length concept album Originalien, is out May 26 via Ropeadope and available for pre-order now.
"Can't See A Thing," featuring longtime collaborator Angelo Moore, came to Czach in a dream of them performing the song live and thought it was a cover. After waking up, Czach realized it wasn’t a cover song he was hearing and immediately grabbed a guitar and wrote the track's chorus, where Czach and Moore engage in a call and response. The track, which was created in a palindrome to be the same forwards and backwards, continues the concept story of the album that emphasizes the importance of anti-racism and calls on humanity to unite against a pervasive systemic issue that plagues American society.
On the meaning of the title, Czach explains, "The title of the song portrays a message that if you take your sense of sight out of the equation, you don’t see race or color, you just hear and feel each other’s being." Makaya McCraven joins the track on drums, Dylan McGee Jones on guitar, as well as contributions from the Budapest Scoring Symphony Orchestra, further amplify the message and bring the song to life. With his latest offering that pulls influences from funk, rock and classical music to Afrobeat and Middle Eastern sounds, Czach aims to encourage others to listen to each other with an open mind without any bias or prejudice, and respect all human beings no matter where they come from. Czach adds, "We are just sentient energy inhabiting organic physical vessels in this world. Join me in seeing beyond the senses, where you 'Can’t See A Thing.'"
In the video, Graham Czach showcases all of the talent who perform the song so they can be seen in their element with the instruments, however viewers get a taste of the track beyond the musicianship, as well, and get a touch of the surreal. Czach and Moore become living metaphors -- singing behind masks, dancing and dueling. They let themselves go to places that challenge and chill, and they leave plenty of room for levity and play. That's the point, after all -- making room in the dialogue for growth, allowing for respect through expansion, and bringing one's whole self to the common goal of unity.
On the song and video, Angelo Moore of Fishbone says, "An epic rock and classical Stravinsky-esque Pink Floyd on steroids musical piece that breaks down the barrier of racism. It's important to recognize that through the universal language of music in this song, we can see beyond our differences and unite together in a common purpose for the good of humanity as a whole. We are all brothers and sisters together in this reality. It was great creating the magic with brother Grahamon this song and video, and like I've been saying forever that became a Fishbone motto, Fuck Racism!"
The solo forthcoming LP Originalien was born out of the life-altering effects of the pandemic, the drive Czach has to bring about positive change, and the support the artist had from his closest friends and family. Expanding on the significance of the album, Czach says, "It feels like a culmination of my long and diverse career in music that tells a story about universal messages and issues I’m passionate about to help make a difference." He continues, "The world has changed a lot in the last few years, and this is my way of trying to bring people together to realize what’s important in this fleeting life, which is love, kindness, compassion, and respect." It was throughout this creation process that Czach turned inward to expose his deepest vulnerabilities, culminating in his most realized, honest work to date.
Over eleven tracks, Originalien blazes a new path where music doesn’t need to fit into a genre or be classified, rather it ties together a wide range of influences from the past and present to propel the music forward into the future in a new light with a completely unique sound free from any constraints. Czach’s work commands instant attention with its sincerity wrapped in soundscapes rich in texture and depth. Czach expands on his process and the new album, articulating, “I’m a very visual composer inspired by real life experiences, issues, and causes, where I can see the scene and story unfolding through the music. This album comes from a very deep place in my being during some of the hardest times the world, myself included, has seen and lived through."
As it took shape, Originalien quickly became a collaborative effort with many contributions from an incredibly vast range of artists and musicians, including the Budapest Scoring Symphony Orchestra. Out today, "Can't See A Thing" features Angelo Moore on vocals, and drummer Makaya McCraven, who also added drums to "Cut You To The Bone." Al Cleveland III (BTS, Bryce Vine) played drums on five different tracks. Dylan McGee Jones (Booker T) played electric guitar on five tracks, 12-string acoustic guitar on "Get Through," and synth bass on "Born Soldier." The album was orchestrated, arranged, produced, engineered, and mixed in Los Angeles by Graham Czach with additional production by Dylan McGee Jones, mastered by Howie Weinberg and Will Borza at Howie Weinberg Mastering in Los Angeles, and “Come Home Again” was mixed by Geoff Foster at AIR Studios in London, UK.
On the album's genre-blending sonic qualities and his hope for the album's impact, Czach continues, "The limitless realm of sounds in all forms and genres of music, even in nature, help me to conceive ideas and bring the music to life, utilizing the textures of any and all instruments, as well as the help from the amazing talented musicians I collaborate with. I’m just trying to leave the world a better place than it was when I entered it.”
Today's release follows the previously shared smooth track "Follow Me and I'll Follow You," featuring GRAMMY nominated singer-songwriter and keyboardist Rachel Eckroth. It's a reminder of the vast amount of love that exists in all forms, including its complexities and its ever-changing nature, as the track lyrically and sonically reflects. It delves into addiction, loss and depression but ultimately emphasizes the power love has to assist in overcoming hardship. Czach explains, "When you feel lost, helpless, depressed, full of hate and anger, or tempted by the demons within, because your love is low, 'Follow Me and I’ll Follow You' back to the light of infinite love around us."
The song arrived with a self-directed, artificial intelligence-generated video that was created by Bonji Rum FX Italy and directed by Czach. Speaking to the album's theme and how it inspired the video, Czach says, "With the theme and concept of the album involving extraterrestrial beings as humans, I really wanted to propel this project and song, in particular, into the future by collaborating with a SFX artist that is utilizing cutting edge technology in AI (artificial intelligence) art and video graphics."
Further describing the unusual, eye-catching video, Czach explains, "The video is loosely based on the concept story of the song utilizing abstract, fast-moving images that you follow pulsing to the music through this maze of intense, kind of disturbing changes, where you almost want to look away but you can't."
Chicago native now based in Los Angeles, Graham Czach is a multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter, activist, producer and composer who has been masterfully fusing jazz, rock, and pop for over a decade. Chicago Tribune praised Czach’s 2010 intimate debut album Lucid, “Graham Czach is already a music lifer… The album swings between polar extremes from guitar-heavy, prog-rock jams into more tender fare like “True Love”, a Paul McCartney-esque ballad bathed in lush strings.” In 2015, Czach shared his sophomore release Star By Star EP including songs co-produced by producer/engineer Bjorn Thorsrud (Smashing Pumpkins), Manny Sanchez (Fall Out Boy), and GRAMMY winner Greg Magers (J. Ivy). The musician later moved to Los Angeles where he formed Rebel Rampage in 2017, a protest rock power trio and released the debut full-length album Divided We Fall in late 2018 featuring Angelo Moore (Fishbone) and Emily Armstrong (Dead Sara).
In 2020, when the pandemic halted live music entirely, Czach began crafting his third solo album beginning with the ambitious "Come Home Again." The track features 33 professional musicians and friends benefiting the COVID Musicians Relief Fund to help musicians out of work and in need. With the success of this endeavor came a flood of creativity taking him on a journey for the next ten months of writing, arranging, and organizing the “One Human” Project featuring a world orchestra and 123 artists from 110 countries benefiting UNICEF, which sought to foster global unity and went on to break a world record for Most Nationalities Contributing Vocals to a Musical Recording (Single Song). Notable artists featured include Kris Myers (Umphrey’s McGee), Juno award winner Alpha Yaya Diallo, GRAMMY winner Dobet Gnahoré, Senegalese legend Cheikh Lô, and many more. See a full list of the artists here. Now, in 2023, Czach, alongside a group of acclaimed collaborators, is gearing up to share an expansive body of work that encapsulates who he is today, as an artist and a person, after honing his craft for over a decade.
"Can't See A Thing," by Graham Czach featuring Angelo Moore is a powerful anti-racism track that encourages unity and melds funk, rock and classical music to Afrobeats and Middle Eastern sounds. It's out everywhere now ahead of Czach's forthcoming LP and the official video is out via Vevo. Originalien, the lush, far-reaching concept album by Czach is due out May 26 via Ropeadope and is available for pre-order now. Shop merch here and connect with the artist on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for much more to come.