I first heard about Kramies though Grandaddy’s Jason Lytle. Seemed Lytle was collaborating with this guy no-one had ever heard of, on an EP no-one had heard yet, called The Wooden Heart. I was curious, because I like to hear things that go unheard. Lytle was contributing instrumental/production stuffs, and this unreleased platter also included the machinations of Todd Tobias, he of “Guy Who Also Works With GBV’s Bob Pollard” fame. So I clicked on this video.
Chortle. Okay, I approve.
So I dispatched a raven to the mountain lands, to see what the deal was with this Colorado chap. And what came back via Raven Post? A handmade, pre-release CD and note scrawled in a broad and pleasing calligraphy from Kramies Windt. I placed the WAVs gingerly on the gramophone, lowered the metaphorical needle and sat back. Six dreamy lush songs, invoking the sleepy shoegaze pop of Pale Saints era and some acousticky Mercury Rev-erie ensued. Hushed vocals, M83-ness, dusky music. It was a most delightful way to spend six songs.
But still I didn’t know enough. “So, Kramies,” I said, “Tell me more.” So he did. In fact, he wrote me a story. A story that I want to share with you. Here’s Kramies’ story about the stories of The Wooden Heart:
“Ever since I was young, I’ve been inspired by moments and images that create little stories, and how these simple stories create emotion. I’ve always been happily occupied by these strange stories, brought to life by what I briefly thought I was seeing and feeling, only to have them disappear just as quickly. As time moves on, if I’m lucky, they might float back as a passing feeling of bewilderment and excitement. On a rare occasion, one of these moments will return and stay with me.
On an October early evening while in Ireland, I had just finished playing a small radio show and decided to slowly wander the streets back to my hotel. Dusk was casting the last thin stream of light over the old, colourfully painted buildings. As I was walking, I felt drawn to one street in particular, so I followed the pull, turned and strolled down towards a small section of buildings. There was one shop that seemed to stand out. Its dimly lit window was decorated with a few strands of Christmas lights and had a very warm glow. I stood in front of that window for what seemed like hours. I was mesmerized by the window display of what appeared to be a shop selling wooden toys.
Everything including time felt old that night, mostly because the stone buildings themselves were old. There in the window, amongst other toys, was a small wooden ship. I’m not sure if the light was hitting it in a special way, but I felt drawn to that wooden ship. The story I started to imagine and the feeling I got from just standing there staring at the small wooden ship was one of those fleeting moments that began to spin around in the back of my thoughts.
A few years passed before I found an old camera memory card from that trip. As I clicked through the pictures, I stopped at a grainy, dark photo. In that photo sat a very familiar memory of a dimly lit window…”
PHEWF. Right? Doesn’t it all make you want to hug an orphan, use a puppy as a scarf, pull up a chair made out of hot toddies and light a pipe?
It does, me. So if you want to feel like this too, listen to the Wooden Heart and buy it here. It is only $5 and it will soothe your soul more than the Starbucks latte you’re clutching that is draining it.
Or if, that’s not enough, and you doubt that Kramies is a real human, he made me – and therefore, also you – two exclusive videos. Watch and enjoy. And please, go buy this EP. “The Wooden Heart” EP is out now via Hidden Shoals. \m/
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