Exposé Online banner

Sam Arnold and the Secret Keepers — Listen to Your Mind
(Bandcamp no#, 2017, DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2017-06-30

Listen to Your Mind Cover art

The cover art is a nightmare vision of an insane god’s melding of various creatures into a single entity. I’m not exactly sure how this relates to the music, but Austin’s budding art and progressive rock community is small, the bands all know one another, mixing and matching talents to form new musical collectives. In this case, Sam Arnold from Opposite Day has a side project called Sam Arnold and The Secret Keepers assembling Andy Nolte on keyboards and backing vocals (Super Creeps, Zissou, and Mostly Dead), Leila Henley on woodwinds and vocals (Invincible Czars, Poon, Stop Motion Orchestra), Greg Yancey on bass and baritone guitar (Opposite Day), Dave Irish on drums and percussion (The Baffles), and Mohadev on electric guitar (Stop Motion Orchestra and Obnositicon) into a coherent unit. The music is complex, yet deceptively simple to hear, integrating Americana, Mid-Eastern themes, funk, jazz, Afro-pop, progressive rock, and a tab of psych. Leila’s outstanding woodwinds effortlessly intertwine with Sam’s and Mohadev’s guitar solos and Dave’s intricate drumming. Despite their surface simplicity, these twelve tracks are intelligently composed, orchestrated, and rehearsed, so much so that the entire band sounds relaxed. The entire album is great, with the tracks “The Captain Is Dead” and its 60s gothic western vibe and ethereal wordless vocals, and the pop-psych “Creatures Are Sleeping” really grabbing my attention. We at Exposé are doing our best to let the rest of the world know about the excellent music coming out of Austin, TX. Sam Arnold and The Secret Keepers, along with their other respective musical projects deserve a broader audience and recognition!


Filed under: New releases, 2017 releases

Related artist(s): Stop Motion Orchestra, Opposite Day, Sam Arnold / Secret Keepers

Latest news

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Wigwam - Some Several Moons – Jim Pembroke and Wigwam were one of those acts who occupied a welcome place between rock and progressive music in Finland. Pembroke’s songwriting style is an easy match to much of Nektar’s...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues