Colin Halliburton is the originator of The Roseline, a musical collective started in 2005 and based in his hometown of Lawrence, Kansas. Halliburton describes their sound as “somewhat literate, midwestern, alt-country, bummer music with a hint of hope.”
There’s plenty of hope in ‘Blood’, with new single ‘How To Be Kind’, showing what to expect from the rest of the album. Although to begin with, it reminds us of a slowed down version of Edwyn Collins’ ‘Girl Like You’, the band’s sound is something akin to Harry Nilsson (think ‘Nilsson Schmilsson’), in that it’s laid back, drawly vocals, accompanied by a steady drum and guitars.
It’s hard to believe then, that Halliburton grew up listening to post punk, and indie rock, until one day, aged 19, he came across someone playing some vintage Whiskeytown. Suddenly, Colin found himself drawn to this sound and immersed himself in Americana, with artists such as Lucinda Williams, Gram Parsons, Townes Van Zandt, Neko Case, and Conor Orberst becoming his inspirations.
The Roseline have released four albums so far, finding their way into the Euro Americana charts, which led them to a deal with King Forward Records, who will release ‘Blood’ in Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg (The album will be self-released in the US). They’ve found success at home too, with NPRs ‘All Things Considered’, picking up their songs, and TV newtworks ABC and USA, as well as several indie films, have featured Roseline songs in their soundtracks. The band has opened for acts including Langhorne Slim, and The Head and The Heart. Not bad for a band started by someone who still works his day job as a university research assistant!
‘Blood’, due out on 6 October, was engineered by David Chutka at the local book repository, the Lawrence Public Library. It’s not such a far out idea – the library boasts a fully-functioning soundproofed recording studio in its basement. The album features The Roseline’s classic blend of wit, and somewhat melancholic honesty – but told from a very modern-day perspective. Halliburton says:
“A lot of Americana leans toward the bizarre fetishizing of all things old timey” Halliburton concedes. “I prefer to tackle the nuances of modern commitment and the existential dread of pursuing a creatively fulfilling life in this particular point in time.”