Sonny Baker
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Sonny Baker

Buffalo, New York, United States | SELF

Buffalo, New York, United States | SELF
Band Folk Alternative

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Last week the pro-local DIY-ers Steak & Cake Records released Sonny Baker’s record Here are those freaks you’ve been asking for. The 5-track collection is the debut effort from Baker, a local storehouse of indie talent as he currently divides his time between three other projects, that being Lazlo Hollyfeld, A Hotel Nourishing, and Wooden Waves, all of which have played a prominent part in WNY music scene in the past few years. That being said, you might want to check out our interview with the musician from yesterday here.

Here are those freaks is Baker’s indie pop record realized, and it covers a hell of a lot of ground in 5 short tracks. While many of these songs have started out as folk demos via an acoustic guitar and tape player, they have blossomed into multi-instrumental collages of textural songwriting. Front and center is Baker’s crowded, chaotic vocals. His thoughts are sporadic as they are plentifully multi-layered. Intricate splashes of guitar and percussion bubble-up in each track, but the record never loses its froth even as each track is piecemealed into various directions, shaking-up the traditional pop song mundanity of verse and chorus.

“Cripple Fantastic” is an intriguing start to the record with it’s looped guitar fade-in and teeth-chattering snare, and Baker’s voice coats it all in its gradual complexities. It’s hard not to appreciate Baker’s signature fast-paced vocal style. The songs can get a bit labyrinthian, which could result in a difficult listening experience for those with short attention spans looking for a immediately catchy song, but if you pay close attention you’ll notice Baker’s songs are more like developing photographs in a darkroom--they slowly unfurl, and you suddenly see the images coming into focus.

Another track brimming with detail is “Up to my Chest, Covered In Lead.” With wild guitar riffs amid organ blips, Baker’s vocals sprint a hilly landscape as convoluted instrumentals pant in their attempt to keep up. “Hallucinating, it’s a Steady Moan” gives us a moment to catch our breath, even if it’s a brief two minute cool off. Baker yawns a lo-fi drawl as he sings, “I try to find a heartbeat / Who cares any more,” even as electric guitar riffs start to infiltrate the folk-rock track.

Unlike a lot of failed pop records, Baker’s never gets boring to listen to because he is constantly shifting colors and speed in an attempt at a sonic bouquet that comes very naturally to him. There are certainly comparisons to be made, Born Ruffians and My Morning Jacket to name a few, but there is something so varied about Baker’s style that makes you wonder why he’s not in two or three more bands, if not only to offer a guitar track or two. Much like a drive from Buffalo to Toronto, Sonny Baker’s music covers a vast and densely populated landscape, as it progresses from lo-fi, humble beginnings to vast and uber-developed songs, and even when you’ve arrived at the conclusion of the record, there is still so much more to discover about it. - BuffaBLOG


I met guitarist/songwriter/singer Sonny Baker at one of his gigs the other day. We started talking and I mentioned that I had seen him perform several times before but couldn’t remember with which band. He named the bands he is currently in: Lazlo Hollyfeld, Wooden Waves, and A Hotel Nourishing. For fans of local music, these are three of the most creative bands Buffalo has seen in a while and Baker has had his hands in each one of them. Impressed by this line up of projects he’s helped create, I shook his hand and told him it was nice to meet him, just as he stepped on stage to perform a set of his own solo acoustic material. - Cory Perla - Artvoice


Sonny Baker is quite the busy guy these days. When he's not performing with his multitude of bands, including Wooden Waves, Lazlo Hollyfeld and a Hotel Nourishing, he's belting out his distinct brand of folk songs as a solo artist...or as he puts it "simple songs, paired well with a lovely aged whiskey". Couldn't have said it better myself. Tonights your chance to check out Sonny doing his solo thing at the Vault along with Kristachuwan and On Guard. Get there at 9 to catch all the acts.

- buffaBLOG


Slyboots is many things, but first and foremost it is a school of music and art where students have access to musical instruction on a variety of instruments, at an affordable price. On Friday though, Slyboots will act as a music venue for some of Buffalo’s hidden gems. Kicking off the night is Sonny Baker, singer/songwriter, guitarist, and vocalist who you might know from various local bands like Wooden Waves, Lazlo Hollyfeld, and the night’s headliner A Hotel Nourishing. The duo of Baker on guitar and drummer Cam Rogers, who make up A Hotel Nourishing, are former Iffy Award Winners and creators of experimental rock akin to acts like Maps & Atlases, and Animal Collective. Psychedelic rock act Cinnamon Aluminum will fuse their experimental electronic sounds with strange African rhythms as the meat of a Sonny Baker sandwich. Shake your glutes at Slyboots this weekend.

- Artvoice


"........Luckily, you’ll have that chance this Friday (Feb 17) at The Vault, one of Buffalo’s newest and most exciting performance and gallery spaces. Heart Parts open the show along with local jack of all trades, Sonny Baker (also of A Hotel Nourishing, Wooden Waves, and Lazlo Hollyfeld fame) with his technical folk musings that put most other guitar players in this city to shame. Doors are at 8:30pm, $10 gets you in. Your ears and mind will thank you. —eric kendall "

- Artvoice


Between stints in Wooden Waves, A Hotel Nourishing, Lazlo Hollyfeld, and probalbey a dozen or so other bands that I am not aware of, local musician Sonny Baker somehow found some time to put together a solo EP, titled Elevator Knees, which is set to be release a bit later this year. He recently posted a track from the EP called "Oh! Please! I'm a Believer!" on his facebook page. Baker, whose voice does not sound that far off from Fleet Foxes front man Robin Pecknold, sings over a pretty acoustic melody on this laid back tune. Make sure to catch Baker this Friday at the Vault opening for Nat Baldwin and on Thursday, Feb 23rd at Mohawk Place for a song writers show case which also features Roger Bryan and Vic Lazar.
- buffaBLOG


Discography

2006-Marmalade Suit LP - Self-Released
2008- Welcome, Machinery EP - Self-Released
2010- Organ, Organic EP - Self-Released
2012- Elevator Knees EP - Self-Released
2012- Here are those freaks you've been asking for. EP - Steak and Cake Records
2012 - I CAN SMELL THAT YOU'RE RUSTED EP - Self- Released

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Bio

singer/songwritter from buffalo, ny, who is involved in several other projects including A Hotel Nourishing, Lazlo Hollyfeld, and Wooden Waves.