We are proud to bring you the first taste of For My Animals, the third album by American Culture. We hope you are paying attention, because For My Animals happens to be one of the most amazing listening experiences of 2021. You might recognize the band’s frontman, Chris Adolf, f?rom his stint in the beloved aughties group The Love Letter Band. But American Culture is something entirely different. Lo-fi, yes. But adventurous. Very adventurous. For My Animals can take you on a journey with each listen, one that throws you into scenarios you might not expect. A lovely little ballad morphs into a dub track, which then turns into a 1965-era Dylan lick? You got it, kid. Listing influences serves absolutely zero purpose. Every influence rings both true and untrue as they quickly move to another. With no wasted or self-indulgent moments makes For My Animals quite a head trip. A very good head trip, at that.
For My Animals will be released March 19, 2021.
Preorder American Culture For My Animals: HHBTM Records
Please enjoy “Pedals,” the first video from For My Animals:
I caught up with Mr. Adolf to discuss his new single, “Pedals,” and just to hear his take on his new band. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Ah geesh. I don’t want to feign modesty here (isn’t put on modesty even more pretentious than bragging?) but this is super hard. Writing about a song I made? It’s always awkward to talk about your own. It’s even hard to think about your own in any context that relates to other people’s perceptions. I haven’t lasted this long making music by thinking too hard on how it’s perceived. That’s a sure way to lose your wits! It’s especially tricky to talk about this stuff because we have a policy in this band (perhaps our ONLY policy) to never think too long, never fuss too hard on a song. If it starts to be labored or over thought, we throw the whole idea out. We might be lazy but we’ve found that the best ones just kind of write themselves. The happy accidental songs are the only keepers here.
I can’t tell you what this song absolutely means; I have my own meanings but I’m in my head and I only hope a listener can find their own meaning in it. What I can tell you, though, a bit about how this band operates. The environment in which these songs come about. Like I said, we don’t labor too hard on the writing process. We also don’t practice all that much. (Should I say that publicly?) Partly because we’re all busy people and partly by design. I think a band loses an edge, especially live, when they become a well oiled machine. When we practice we kind of just make sure we’re all are kind of on the same page as to what the big picture of the songs are but we leave it loose so there’s room for each member to fill in the blanks. To make it their own. Our practices are more about finding jams that songs can grow out of. I usually take those loose sketches home and make the poetry part as I’m drifting off to sleep or as I’m waking up from sleep.
With “Pedals” I was (clearly) listening to a lot of Kinks and The Who that week, with that opening riff. I asked Kim to do a kind of bombastic Keith Moon thing. She’s not a drummer or person who likes to show off but I was floored when she leaned into it. WOW! It was one of those moments when we all got a hard to hide smile. I think it was a relief for her when the verse dropped down so mellow and we could get those silly grins off of our face go back to looking cool. This is one of the most traditional pop/rock structures we have on this collection of songs. Michael, our guitar player has this weird ability to find melodies that I would never in a million years dream up over a given set of chords. Really shows his thing in that first lead he pulled out. Super proud of his ending shred too! I’m also proud of some of my rhymes here! If I don’t say so myself.
Zane Stein (Michael’s kid brother) and Addison Houck made the video, and it stars Christian Carvallo. I think Zane chose this song to do a video for because his big brother shreds so hard at the end. Zane shot this on a dslr filmed over the top of one of his 2 grade soccer games. (They lost that game.) No sea creatures were harmed or eaten in the making of this.