Photos and review by Randy Jarosz
Looking to do something different, André Costello and the Cool Minors put their 3 song EP, Summer’s Best, to an extended visual music video. With the help from a $900 KICKSTARTER campaign the project became a reality when it finally premiered in front of fans, friends, and family Saturday, March 1st at Blackbird Studios in Lawrenceville. The sold out space featured a reception followed by a short set by André Costello and the Cool Minors and capped off by the bands visual EP.
With a lighted 3D stage backdrop by artist Ron Copeland the band played a handful of unrecorded songs for the special occasion, all of which could easily find their way into a future recording. André Costello led the set with the song “Took Our Cause,” while wearing his trademark tossle cap. Matthew Fiorillo followed on bass and Nicholas Charters on drums. The 7 minute track about heartbreak had a Neil Young flavor to it. “This song is called “Steady Loaded People,” its a country song and it’s about heartbreak,” says Costello. “I can’t wait forever,” Costello repeats before laying into his harmonica. The song came to a climax when Costello sings the verse, “…someone on the bottle once told me that truth,” before pausing and taking a deep breath, he goes onto sing, “is measured by shovels of dirt.” The band continues with “She Took My Hand,” ..and it is about heartbreak,” says Costello. Costello finishes the set by playing “Tumbleweed,” by request, the title track from the band’s 2011 release.
The 15 minute Samuel Price directed visual EP feature started with the catchy “Roll On (spaceship).” The track shows Costello on a piano in a studio setting. Eventually the piano is pushed through city streets, in particular, behind Pittsburgh Filmmakers during “Hear, Say.” Complete with existing graffiti on the wall and some added with chalk to reflect song verses. The piano ends up in a field during “Solar Flares,” where it is set on fire. The setting is a Buffalo Ranch in the Ellwood City area where Costello grew up. Price goes onto explain that the burning piano concept came first and they worked backward to complete the film. The piano burned in three hours and another hour after it collapsed. Costello admits that it was easy parting with the piano because of its cracked sound board. After the rolling credits, a Buffalo makes its way toward the still erect piano, turns and looks at the viewers.
André Costello and the Cool Minors are in the process of working on their next full length studio album slotted for later this year under Wild Kindness Records. You can catch André Costello and the Cool Minors March 7 at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh or March 28 at Howler’s Coyote Café.