to: whom it may concern
The opening moments of to: whom it may concern sound like the start of a classic jazz record, and when trumpeter Ron Miles drops in with a cascading sequence right around the one-minute mark, it seems to cement the idea that High Fiction is destined to play dark, dingy jazz clubs. But just when that seems to be a definite, the duo of Gary Grundel and Amy Shelley and their ample assortment of guests start to pick apart, rearrange and play with musical themes and transform the record into a magnificent, soaring modern rock record that seems to nod at everyone from Radiohead to Low. One of the album’s great highlights is “The Young Men” which features Matt Beringer of The National, and is centered around segments of a cassette tape recorded interview of Grundei’s father and WWII vet, which was recorded in 1989. The massive crescendo of “Am I a Dream” and the soaring choral soul of “Elvis Has Left the Building” takes the material all over the map and back, and does so with some tremendous depth, feeling and musicianship.