Empty Country - Empty Country LPGet Better Records
Joseph D’Agostino was twenty when he self-released his first record, Why There Are Mountains, in 2009. His band, Cymbals Eat Guitars, found itself in high demand overnight, drawing comparisons to Modest Mouse, Pavement, and Bruce Springsteen, some of D’Agostino’s musical heroes. Cymbals Eat Guitars went on to release three more critically acclaimed albums over the next seven years and toured the world several times over.
More than a decade later, D’Agostino is releasing his fifth full-length album, and his first outside Cymbals Eat Guitars, as Empty Country. For D’Agostino, the new beginning prompted a return to a familiar style of creative labor: he wrote, arranged, and produced the album himself (with co-production and engineering by Kyle Gilbride of Swearin’), spending over two years writing layered instrumental parts and vocal arrangements for his family and close friends to perform. The album features his wife and sister-in-law on backup vocals; a West Philadelphia neighbor, Zena Kay, on pedal steel; and a rhythm section comprised of twins Anne Dole, the drummer for Cymbals Eat Guitars, and her brother Pat on bass guitar. The album’s first single, “Ultrasound,” features Charles Bissell of the Wrens (D’Agostino’s mentor and former guitar teacher) on backing vocals.