I’ve been a fan of Lightning Dust(Joshua Wells and Amber Webber) ever since I first heard Infinite Light about 10 years ago. Of course, I knew them from Black Mountain prior to that. Webber’s vocals were the secret weapon in that band(shh, don’t tell McBean and co that.) With Lightning Dust Wells and Webber left the prog rock tendencies with McBean and Schmidt and made jangly, dark folk rock with touches of electronic flourishes.
After 2016’s IV, Wells and Webber left Black Mountain permanently to concentrate on Lightning Dust full time. Their first Lightning Dust album post-Black Mountain was the dark and gorgeous Spectre. It was a much heavier album mood-wise than what came before, and shone a light on Wells’ deft production skills and Webber’s haunting vocal prowess. You could feel the time and attention to detail that was put into the record, and for me was one of the most under-appreciated records of 2019.
Amber Webber recently began a live music series in Vancouver with friends called Mix Tape Rodeo. The most recent in the series is a gorgeous performance of the Spectre track “Joanna”. While we wait for the new Lightning Dust long player, we can watch the excellent performance below.
Also in Lightning Dust news, Joshua Wells announced that he and Webber are reigniting their old project Ex Spectors, a Christmas covers project that is specifically related to the legendary producer/horrible human being Phil Spector. Their cover this time is the great “Danny Says” by the Ramones from their album End of the Century, produced of course by Phil Spector in 1980.
Here’s some more info on the project from Mr. Wells:
A straight Xmas bummer, “Danny Says” chronicles a band on the road and exhausted at the behest of their ambitious manager. This Ramones track, a favourite of Joey’s and ours, was originally produced by the personally loathed but professionally lauded Phil Spector in legendarily fraught sessions for the album End Of The Century.
Here the beloved song is re-imagined by a cadre of Vancouver’s (and now Victoria’s) non-denominationally motivated holiday punks, for your consideration. Why the Ex Spectors? ‘Cause we hate Phil, but have to admit we love the music.
In the spirit of the season, proceeds from this year’s recording will be donated to Crabtree Corner, a program to provide hampers full of gifts and supplies to help financially burdened single mothers and their children in Vancouver over the holiday. This can be a stressful time of year for low income families, and this year has exacerbated these issues, beyond a doubt.
Check out the cover below, then download it for a good cause. Also, because it’s a great cover. Merry Christmas.