Brandon Wiard and The Saviors

Brandon Wiard and The Saviors


Smart/concise indie-pop songs in the vein of Wilco/Elvis Costello/David Bowie. Hooks for days and the voice to make them matter.


PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING is the latest release from Ypsilanti-based indie-pop standard-bearer Brandon Wiard, his third solo release to date.

PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING was tracked at Big Sky Studios (Ann Arbor, MI), Pop Squad Studios (Hollywood, CA) and Studio C (Grand Rapids, MI). The entire album was mixed at Big Sky Studios (Ann Arbor, MI) and mastered at Sound on Sound Recording (New York, NY).

“I‘m learning to be cynical...” Brandon Wiard dead-panned to a reporter. This would most likely be the “effect” to the “cause” found on his latest epic-release PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING. Tales of love, loss, growing up and hope penned by this 24 yr. old “boy genius”. Lush indie-pop intended for tight-fitting headphones and attentive listening.

PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING’s charm lies within it’s chameleon like approach to songwriting/production. Songs like “Already In Amazement” (temptations of an “other woman”), “Since You’ve Gone Away” (loss of friends/family/love) and “Moving On” (relationship’s end) lean more on the Cars-esque rock tendencies with squealing synth/chunky guitars. Then you have the Costello-ed “I’ll Write These Songs” (generational gap), the soulful “Permanent Smile” (growing up), the Sebadoh-ed rocker “KMS” (office-crush) and the Old 97’s/Built To Spill thriller “Loose Women” (the title says it all). Once we arrive at the end of the disc things take a turn for the Brian Wilson. “Old Heartless Sun” (voyage gone wrong) is a proggish electro-sea chantey. “Second Story” (secret admirer) is a warm Wilco-esque tune that goes into a “KMS” reprise and then an extremely somber sound collage. “Seeing You In No Time” (train-wreck and suicide) is another proggish tune which goes into a “Since You’ve Gone Away” reprise and yet another atmospheric sound collage that ends the album. Hidden in the mixes on this masterpiece are members of Ozma, The Singles, The Verve Pipe, Blues Traveler, Saturday Looks Good To Me and The Original Brothers and Sisters Of Love.

It all started singing Hall & Oates' "Maneater" in a stroller at JC Penney's...Brandon Wiard was born into a family of apple growers in a small Michigan town but he always knew he’d make his own path. Art was his passion but music had to fill his ears 24 hours a day. He was an addict. When there was no radio in sight he would simply replay songs he knew in his head to get his fix. You can only be an addict for so long before you start dealing. It was in the middle of his sophomore year of highschool (prep. school...unfortunately he only focused on art/English/Latin) that some friends wanted to form a band and Brandon became the singer-songwriter for the group. The group wasn’t very good so Brandon quickly formed a new group, with friend Eric Sloat, and dubbed the project "Starmotel". A mix of indie-rock and classic pop sensibility, the band meandered over the next three years.

Eventually Eric left for college and Wiard started his solo career in the fall of 2001. TO SOMEONE I KNOW, a collection of his own songs and some co-written with Sloat, was independently released in November 2001. In lieu of having a band he performed his arsenal of songs with just an acoustic guitar and a golden throat. In between the 2 albums Wiard released SUPER SECRET DOUBLE AWESOME JAPANESE IMPORT B-SIDE COLLECTION, a collection of 17 solo and band demos. To date he has opened for the likes of such acts as Mason Jennings, David Dondero, Hey Mercedes, Clem Snide, Joseph Arthur, Mike Watt, Ours, The Church, The Divine Comedy, Ryan Cabrera and many others. He has toured nationally, playing such venues as The Knitting Factory (Hollywood, CA), Maxwell's (Hoboken, NJ), Clutch Cargo’s (Detroit, MI) and The Bluebird Theater (Denver, CO). He has just played the 2004 Midpoint Music Festival (Cincinnati, OH), Dewey Beach Music Fest (Dewey Beach, DE) and M.E.A.N.Y. FEST 2004 (New York, NY). His self-created video for “Miss Michigan” (feat. Andrew WK) received heavy play this fall (nationwide and on MTV Latin America) and PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING reached #179 on the CMJ charts (was 16th most added it’s first week).

Brandon has assembled a group dubbed The Saviors (feat. Patt Cowger {bass, backing vocals}, Adrian Robles{lead guitar, backing vocals} and Fido Kennington {drums, backing vocals}) and has been performing tracks from PAINTING A BURNING BUILDING with the same tenacity he put into recording them.

“Catch him while he’s catchable” as one reporter put it.


Falling Chandelier

Written By: Brandon Wiard

Someone ripped a page
right out of history
tried to claim it as their own
got sued for plagery
had to liquidate the cars
they yacht, the condo in Kuwait
now they're selling dimebags in a park
beside the interstate

There came a rising star
T.V. movie of the week
took all her fame right up her nose
to the point she couldn't speak
passed out in a parking lot
behind a pile of trash
two kids found her D.O.A.
and made off with her cash

Funny, aint it funny
how fate can twist the blade
trip you up and you bite your tongue
just when you think you've got it made
better count your blessings
for the moment that they're here
they'll shatter like a falling chandelier

A millionaire with a millions things
designed a million-dollar drug
he liked his million-dollar whores
to please him on his bear-skin rug
one gave him his money's worth
and an incurable disease
now he pleads with God to take it back
on his million dollar knees

Funny, aint it funny
how fate can twist the blade
trip you up and you bite your tongue
just when you think you've got it made
better count your blessings
for the moment that they're here
they'll shatter like a falling chandelier

Sugar Packets

Written By: Brandon Wiard

Well, I'll tell you a story
but you know how it ends
moved up with a boy
and now lives with a friend
"Andrea" minus an "e"
"cost" minus a "c" and plus an "l"
trading stories for Pall Malls
and talking 'bout her new boy

Iowa's loss is a coffee shop's gain
see, I am half-amused
because shes' half-insane
conspiring ways to withstand
the words we speak

She said if these sugar packets were money
we'd be rich beyond our dreams
but the sad truth is that we are young
and we live beyond our means

Sadder than it seems
we live beyond our means
sadder than it seems
we live beyond our means

Rescue Me

Written By: Brandon Wiard

They say I'm a book that doesn't have pages
series of thoughts with content contagious
contagious so much I'm a quaratined misfit
spend my day with a mirror scowling at a half-wit

When I'm about to blow
a hole right through the wall
to knock my prison down
I stop myself
for I would be remiss
to sacrifice my sanctuary
just to have some other folks around

Dreams haven't come to this bedroom in ages
had a couple of pets, kept them in cages
cages eventually kill anything they capture
not dying for awhile so I'm hoping for the rapture

Am I good to go?
Is my slate clean enough?
Are there things that I should do to improve my chances?
I'll be one lonely sinner
on the side of the highway
waiting to hitch a ride that won't ever come

But won't you come and rescue me
we could drive down to the sea
lose our shirts
let the water take us down
but if you don't then send regards
to my sister and my mom
tell them I was truly trying
to keep my head up

Emergency Room

Written By: Brandon Wiard

In the emergency room
there's a woman white as a ghost
propped up like a porcelain doll
clutching a rotary phone
did she dial a number?
perhaps its' her husband at home?
her lips never move
so maybe there's no one at all

I'll swear this fever
will eat me alive
if someone doesn't come for me now

Black tar heroin
shot straight into her thigh
since all her veins collapsed
she's afraid that she might die
infections in her foot
how she screams
each time they pry

I'll swear this fever
will eat me alive
if someone doesn't come for me now

Barely sixteen
and both of them don't know what to do
she can't even drive
and in 3-weeks her baby is due
he says that he'll drop out of school and get job
it'll all work out

I'll swear this fever
will eat me alive
if someone doesn't come for me now

Be Good

Written By: Brandon Wiard

We all spin our wheels in a different way
what often seems right can lead us astray
passion and instinct can cloud common sense
what matters is love and some trustworthy friends

And when you go
did you steal the show?

Don't make it bad
don't make it worse


To Someone I Know-LP-November 2001
D Is For Demo-EP-February, 2002
True Love Was A Lie- EP-November 2002
That's Cute-EP-January 2003
Super Secret Double Awesome Japanese Import B-Side Collection-LP-November 2003
Painting A Burning Building-LP-July 2004

Set List

Miss Michigan
Since You've Gone Away
Falling Chandelier (new)
Mary Mackenzie
The General
Sugar Packets (new)
1993 (new)
Second Story