Exposé Online banner

Sam Arnold and the Secret Keepers — Listen to Your Mind
(Bandcamp no#, 2017, DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2017-06-30

Listen to Your Mind Cover art

The cover art is a nightmare vision of an insane god’s melding of various creatures into a single entity. I’m not exactly sure how this relates to the music, but Austin’s budding art and progressive rock community is small, the bands all know one another, mixing and matching talents to form new musical collectives. In this case, Sam Arnold from Opposite Day has a side project called Sam Arnold and The Secret Keepers assembling Andy Nolte on keyboards and backing vocals (Super Creeps, Zissou, and Mostly Dead), Leila Henley on woodwinds and vocals (Invincible Czars, Poon, Stop Motion Orchestra), Greg Yancey on bass and baritone guitar (Opposite Day), Dave Irish on drums and percussion (The Baffles), and Mohadev on electric guitar (Stop Motion Orchestra and Obnositicon) into a coherent unit. The music is complex, yet deceptively simple to hear, integrating Americana, Mid-Eastern themes, funk, jazz, Afro-pop, progressive rock, and a tab of psych. Leila’s outstanding woodwinds effortlessly intertwine with Sam’s and Mohadev’s guitar solos and Dave’s intricate drumming. Despite their surface simplicity, these twelve tracks are intelligently composed, orchestrated, and rehearsed, so much so that the entire band sounds relaxed. The entire album is great, with the tracks “The Captain Is Dead” and its 60s gothic western vibe and ethereal wordless vocals, and the pop-psych “Creatures Are Sleeping” really grabbing my attention. We at Exposé are doing our best to let the rest of the world know about the excellent music coming out of Austin, TX. Sam Arnold and The Secret Keepers, along with their other respective musical projects deserve a broader audience and recognition!


Filed under: New releases, 2017 releases

Related artist(s): Stop Motion Orchestra, Opposite Day, Sam Arnold / Secret Keepers

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

László Hortobágyi - Summa Techonologiae – While not well known in the States, Hungary's László Hortobágyi has for most of the 90s been making some of the most exciting ethno-electronic music available anywhere. Another disc from the...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues