Big Hassle Media
Noah and The MegaFauna
Anthems for a Stateless Nation
“There’s something about being named Noah that makes you dream apocalyptically.”
- Noah Lit
When frontman Noah Lit was faced with the collapse of his former indie rock band Oliver Future, he took what he saw as the only next logical step, put aside the electric guitar, and dive into the world of acoustic gypsy jazz. As he dug deeper into the dizzying scales, arpeggios and antiquated chords and patterns, Lit found a concealed wealth of songs surfacing in a form that quickly became Noah And The MegaFauna. His new sound: a clamorous whiskey filled raucous of sing-a-longs on the eve of destruction. Noah’s new song writing inspiration had him calling upon the diversity of his record collection and creating a combination of influences that while once were founded in rock bands like The Kinks, Radiohead and The Beatles, now also included jazz artists Django Reinhardt, Charles Mingus, Louis Armstrong and genre benders Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Jacques Brel and Leonard Cohen. Simply put by Noah himself, “Anthems for a Stateless Nation is a humble attempt at making a record that sounds like my record collection.” What resulted is a narrative caravan through moments of torrential downpours and shiftless shadows followed by the blissful warmth of a calm you hope will stay for good.
Once Noah Lit’s pen took on this ambitious new task he quickly enrolled longtime friend and accomplished producer Adam Lasus (Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Yo La Tengo, Clem Snide) to help build his dynamic vision. Quickly joined by the efforts of his brother and long time collaborator Joshua Lit (Oliver Future) on backing vocals, piano and accordion and a rhythm section of Shiben Battacharaya on upright bass, Chris Lovejoy on drums and Travis Knight on percussion, the record took it’s first breathe at Lasus’ Los Angeles studio Fireproof Recording in November of 2010. With each track growing rapidly and naturally into a lush bed of guitar driven gypsy pop Noah soon enlisted his younger brother Gabriel Lit in New York City to provide horn and string arrangements as well as play clarinet and bass clarinet on the record. In order to best capture his new eight piece horn section and the severely talented violinist Wen Chang, Noah sought out a special environment and traveled to New York City to record with friend and producer Joe Rogers (Kelli Scarr, The Shivers, Moby) at his unique studio space Silence Breaks atop a elementary school in the South Bronx. The devastating horn section, littered with New York City’s best young, up and coming jazz musicians screamed, squawked and honked in moments of fury and passion and harnessed a warmth and subtly in quieter moments that also balanced well with the cinematic air provided by the vast array of female guest vocalists. Amongst the record’s guest vocalists are Kat Edmonson, Marianne Dissard, Emily St. Amand-Poliakoff and Mindy Gaspar. Also lending their talents are world renowned gypsy guitarist Gonzalo Bergara playing bandoneon and lead guitar and Steve Ferrone (Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers, George Harrison) playing drums. The end result is a dramatic dialogue recounting a tale of pre, and post-apocalyptic displacement, wandering, panic and ultimate redemption laced within the narrative of a dark folk record.
The nine piece live band has now become a force that goes even beyond the record. Lighting up bars and clubs in Los Angeles and New York City, the band has made fans and followers on both coasts. In fall of 2011 they were invited and filmed for Judd Apatow’s new movie This is 40. The band blew away Paul Rudd, Chris O’Dowd and Apatow who exclaimed “Now I have to rewrite the movie for you all!” Rewrites aside, the song Moan All Night, will be featured in the film and the band playing it live will be in the DVD extras. When they stopped into WNYC’s Soundcheck with John Schafer, after the first song John gleefully exclaimed “The folks downstairs in the Archives called up to say, they heard you through the floor!” and Noah quipped back “That’s hard to do with acoustic instruments.” The band went on to play a sold out show at the prestigious, Joe’s Pub.
Noah And The MegaFauna’s “Anthems for a Stateless Nation” is nightmare pop, a modern day allegory of Noah’s Arc, a narrative tale of global warming, indie folk with jazz for a right hook, a big band swinging, a small gypsy ensemble moaning, a convergence of influence and orchestration that represents the ever shrinking world we live in, a wanderer’s diary played on instruments that can be carried on your back, a singer/songwriter/indie/gypsy/jazz record that dares it’s player’s to growl, squawk, squeak, and squeal, and it’s listeners to climb aboard for an eclectic but determined vision of the future.
Noah And The MegaFauna’s “Anthems for a Stateless Nation” is out now on Brooklyn-based Silence Breaks Records.
NOAH AND THE MEGAFAUNA
NEW DATES ANNOUNCED
INCLUDING HOTEL CAFE (LA) & JOE’S PUB (NYC). FULL LIST BELOW
ON AND ON FREE TRACK DOWNLOAD
FROM THE DEBUT ALBUM ANTHEMS FOR A STATELESS NATION
“Equal parts Django Reinhardt, Tom Waits, and a night out drinking and dancing with friends.” – Under The Radar
“Songs for the end of the world, inspired by the old world.” - Pop Matters
Noah And The MegaFauna’s Anthem For A Stateless Nation is a raucous, whiskey-drenched, horn-laden soundtrack to the apocalypse with gypsy jazz for a right hook and big band swing. It’s a modern day allegory of Noah’s Arc exploring the displacement, wandering, panic, and ultimate redemption of the end times – that you can dance to.
The brainchild of former Oliver Future frontman Noah Lit, Anthems For A Stateless Nation features a 10-piece, carnival-esque acoustic gypsy-jazz ensemble and is produced by Adam Lasus (Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Yo La Tengo) with additional production by Joe Rogers (Kelli Scarr, The Shivers), features world-renowned gypsy guitarist Gonzalo Bergara,drummer Steve Ferrone (Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers, George Harrison), andguest vocalists Kat Edmonson, Marianne Dissard, Emily St. Amand-Poliakoff and Mindy Gaspar.
Today the band announces a string of live dates (listed below) and releases the song On And On as a free download. The track – which owes its haunting hook to the “Erhu” a traditional Chinese violin with two strings and a snakeskin resonator – is the midpoint of the apocalyptic narrative… Some time has passed and the earth has begun to heal itself with massive floods, as water rises and food becomes scarce the survivors have to make decisions about what to do with loved ones that have been infected by an (unnamed) virus… Can they eat the dead? How long should they wait?
“It’s a song about living with awful decisions and being choked by regret,” explains Lit. “I’ve always been really into apocalyptic literature,” he continues. “While writing Anthems I was reading Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake, and Year of the Flood, Max Brooks’ World War Z, and Moby Dick – which is the ultimate story of the end of the world, as both Wall Street and the polar ice caps were melting down.”
The result is Anthems For A Stateless Nation, a winding musical caravan that takes the listener through moments of torrential downpours and the near-breakdown of humanity ending in a blissful calm. The record finds its influence in Lit’s record collection – an eclectic mix of rock bands like The Kinks, Radiohead and The Beatles, jazz artists like Django Reinhardt, Charles Mingus, Louis Armstrong and genre benders like Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Jacques Brel and Leonard Cohen.
Noah And The MegaFauna were recently invited to perform in a scene for the upcoming Judd Apatow film This Is 40 and are currently on tour supporting Anthems For A Stateless Nation, which has met with critical praise from KCRW, American Songwriter, NME, Buzzbands LA, Pop Matters, WNYC, and more.
May 17 – Los Angeles – The Satellite Lounge
May 25 – Sacramento – The Torch Club
May 26 – San Francisco – The Make Out Room
May 30 – Los Angeles – The Bootleg
June 10 – Los Angeles – Hotel Café
June 24 – New York CIty – Joe’s Pub
MEDIA COVERAGE INVITED