Medium Underground

Medium Underground

BandRock

Original rock with a rhythmic groove and a dark edge. Intricate musical style surrounding lyrics that are both poetic and mystical. Sometimes compared to heavier versions of Fleetwood Mac and Peter Gabriel with a touch of Led Zeppelin

Biography

Formed in 2002 by guitarist Jim Noland, Medium Underground offers an alternative to what many consider to be an arid modern music landscape. The songs reach out from that inner place where many of us feel there is mystery and great possibilities in life. The music has a dark quality that reflects the heavy forces at work in the world but also a message that inspires hope. “These songs come out of a sincere desire to offer something a little deeper than what is usually heard in contemporary music.” notes singer and lyricist Jim Noland. “This music doesn’t dwell on the ordinary; it exists to feed the soul.”

Many of the songs began to take form just after September 11th 2001, in a time when the very foundation of western life was shaken. “In that time I felt as though there was an opening for something that spoke to more than booty calls, broken hearts, and rage.” explain’s Noland. I turned my attention to writing and drawing on my love of the mysteries in life, the Pyramids, Stonehenge, ancient civilizations and the myth’s that surround them. Many people suspect that there is some deeper purpose and meaning to life. Many of us have had experiences that fall into the paranormal or we find ourselves looking at the Pyramids and thinking “this means something”. It’s those places and moments that inspires this music.

As the songs took shape Jim reached out to a few friends to complement the instrumentation. Jon Perry and Jim have been writing and playing together since they were in their teens, Frank Peaker played in other groups with musicians Jim and Jon have known for years. With Jon and Frank working out the rhythm section the songs began to develop a life of their own. “Frank and Jon made these songs legitimate” says Noland. “They believed in the content of the songs and saw the potential for other people to really dig them. They put a lot of skill and detail into the foundation of the music, and it shows.”

Medium Underground continued as a trio for nearly a year until they met up with Larry Wilson. There was definitely room for another element but it would have to be the right fit given the nature of the lyrics and the well structured rhythm section. Jon brought up the idea of asking Larry to join after seeing him play in a local club one night. The fit is perfect. Wilson’s approach to the complex voicings of Noland’s open tunings is magical, complementing and expanding the already rich sounds and rhythms.

In 2006 Rob Reid joined Medium Underground bringing another excellent drum and percussion talent to the group. “This opens up a lot of possibilities for us” Noland explained. “Perry is not only a great drummer he’s a great guitarist and keyboard player. Having Rob on board give us plenty of muscle in the rhythm section and gives us an opportunity to expand the sound a bit more live.”

The group made the investment and assembled a studio to give them free reign to record and produce at will. While other musicians such as Ray Ray from the Mayan Factor have recorded in the group’s studio, it remains primarily a tool for Medium Underground to craft the songs that have become their unique trademark sound. “I have a background in engineering and I enjoy working with other musicians in the studio and live, but recording with Medium Underground has been my main focus.” Says Noland. “but I have to keep a healthy balance between the “left brain” technical role of being an engineer and the “right brain” creative part.

Songs like “As I Am”, “Frontiers” and “Exiles” speak to getting out from under the forces that hold us down and the indomitable quality of the human spirit, while “Night In Babylon” evokes that sense of ancient mystery. “Where They Will” is like a rhythmic romp through the Book of revelations. “It’s not all heavy dark mysterious stuff though” admits Noland. “Tunes like “Room for love” and “Light of the Muse” are really feel good songs with a bit of tongue in cheek humor. You’ve got to mix it up a little bit to keep it flowing”

Lyrics

Exiles

Written By: J. Noland

See the horses running, on a shore that has no name
Can you see them coming, thunder hoof tasseled manes
That's my heart that's beating surf against the sand
A rage against this feeling, dressed up, civilized modern man

And I know no countries or loyalties to any state
For my soul is hungry and it's no president for which I wait
This savage lion heart that I understand
Pulse of the planet earth, the surf against the sand

To the masts our midnight sails are raised
The harbor wind offers up a sigh
I find myself laughing at the thought
But you know I'm serious of mind
By the light of the moon this game is played
Voices low and the stakes are high
On the shores the coventry is laid
These exiles fly

If I write it out to you won't you try to understand
When all I see is dark, my head is in my hands
Now we're running faster and we can't be sure
We're looking into doubt now and we're standing at the door
I'm a rich man if you're here, and if your're not I'm poor
Such is the exiles life out on the nameless shore

To the masts our midnight sails are raised
The harbor wind offers up a sigh
I find myself laughing at the thought
But you know I'm serious of mind
By the light of the moon this game is played
Voices low and the stakes are high
On the shores the coventry is laid
These exiles fly

As I Am

Written By: Jim Noland

Am I mired in this role
Cause the fire in my soul
There's I tired man I know
And my thoughts are turning home

As I am I am as I am
And I close these tired eyes again
As I am I am As I am
In the starlight I remain

It's a liar's game I'm told
And the captive heart remains
If my love needs me to hold
Will it leave me just the same

As I am I am as I am
And I close these tired eyes again
As I am I am As I am
In the starlight I remain

Come to me this lovely sound
Like a siren on the waves
Run this broken life a ground
Am I in these arms to stay

Copyright 2006 J.D. Noland All Rights Reserved

Second Sight

Written By: Jim Noland

There’s no shadows on this Sun
They are cast out into space
This is how the work gets done
Getting into this inner place

The Theatre’s alight – all a glow
As we drift into the dream
For a little while – this picture show
The story seems quite real

Give me second sight
So I can see what really matters
Open up my eyes
I think it’s time for letting go
Give me second sight
So I can see what really matters
But that look in your eyes
Says it time for letting go

In this game we are blind
Everyday we try to walk a straight line
Without sight not a sign
Drifting in the water in the nighttime

I am certain there’s a way
But the secret I am keeping just the same
There’s a memory there’s a rhyme
But it’s hard to see the rhythm with the untrained eye

Give me second sight
So I can see what really matters
Open up my eyes
I think it’s time for letting go
Give me second sight
So I can see what really matters
But that look in your eyes
Says it time for letting go

Copyright 2006 J.D. Noland All Rights Reserved

Discography

"Second Sight" (Debut Release 2007)

Airplay / Streaming
As I Am
Light of the Muse
Second Sight
Frontiers
Exiles

Set List

Performances range from 45 to 90 minutes depending on the venue/show

Set list is all original material from the debut album and the upcoming second release. Songs include:

As I Am
The Road Less Traveled
Frontiers
Lost Angels Us
Second Sight
Stratosfears
Dark Places
Exiles
On the Shore
Where They Will
Night in Babylon
Overcast
Heavy Seas
Tower of Babel
Light of the Muse