This past spring Cameron Blake came from Michigan to work with producer Mat Leffler-Schulman for his third album. Without The Sound Of Violence was written and recorded in just under three months. Cameron recalled, “I wrote and recorded this album extremely quickly; about 2 1/2 months from start to finish. It was a wonderful process because Mat and I didn’t question our instincts, over-produce the arrangements or clean out any of the grit in the songwriting. It was all about relinquishing control and we found this very refreshing.”
While this record is most definitely an album of storytelling, there is something sublime about the instrumentation and music. It is almost Eno-esque in the sometimes minimal arrangements. There’s a sense of sadness to this record, contrasted with tinges of hope for the future.
Cameron doesn’t mess around when it comes to his band. He brought together his long-time Baltimore-based band consisting of Geoff Knorr (cello, electric guitar, bass), Dave Hadley (pedal steel, dobro) and Chris Pierorazio (drums), while adding musicians David Parker (electric guitar and bass), Ruby Fulton (accordion) and Ed Tetreault (Hammond B3).
There is an apparent chemistry between Cameron and Mat. This is third record they have worked on together. Mat adds, “While Cameron and I have not known each other for longer than a few years, I feel like we’ve been working on records together our whole life. At times during the tracking process for Without The Sound Of Violence, we would finish each other’s sentences about where the songs should go. Be it instrumentation, production or mixing. Cameron is such a great co-producer. He has a clear vision and knows how to find the right people to work with to achieve that vision.”
Without The Sound Of Violence is due out this fall but the first single “People” can be heard in the player.
Guitar, vocals and piano by Cameron Blake
Guitar, bass and cello by Geoff Knorr
Pedal steel guitar by Dave Hadley
Guitar and bass by David Parker
Drums, background vocals and mandolin by Chris Pierorazio
Organ by Ed Tetreault
Accordion by Ruby Fulton
Background vocals by Jill Collier Warne
Produced and mixed by Mat Leffler-Schulman and Cameron Blake
Mastered by Bill Wolf