Far From Kansas | Rome Wasn't Burned in a Day

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Rock: Americana Country: Alt-Country Moods: Type: Lyrical
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Rome Wasn't Burned in a Day

by Far From Kansas

This is road trip music - the soundtrack to twilight summer drives up the 101 and down Pacific Coast Highway. Fusing alt.country and power-pop into a new brand of Americana, the band delivers its most polished and professional collection of songs to date.
Genre: Rock: Americana
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. The Summer of '96
3:52 $0.69
2. Between the Frets
3:11 $0.69
3. 28 Days Away
3:59 $0.69
4. Walking Shadow
3:38 $0.69
5. Smoke & Gasoline
4:13 $0.69
6. Auburn Sky
4:28 $0.69
7. County Line
3:49 $0.69
8. Railroad Tracks
4:53 $0.69
9. Old No. 7 and Counting
3:10 $0.69
10. Wings on Your Back
4:12 $0.69
11. Lullaby
4:09 $0.69
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

Rumor has it that FAR FROM KANSAS front-man, J.D. LEVIN, is a distant cousin of the WALLFLOWERS' famous lead singer, JAKOB DYLAN. In addition, it's also been suggested that Levin is related to Jakob's slightly more famous father, BOB (if only by marriage). While these rumors have yet to be confirmed, and numerous calls placed to both Dylans' publicists have yet to be returned, one thing is certain: J.D. Levin's musical genealogy is just as rich as his near-mythic biological one.

From his early days haunting ARMY OF FRESHMEN shows at the old Teltron Café in Ventura, California, J.D. Levin has built his reputation on one unfailing principal: always begin with a well-crafted song. Combining his love of '60s and '70s singer-songwriters such as BOB DYLAN, NEIL YOUNG, and BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN with an affinity for modern-day songwriting savants such as ELLIOTT SMITH, CONOR OBERST and RYAN ADAMS, Levin's songs seem to exist somewhere between the classic rock he grew up on and the rock and roll played by his friends and peers. In fact, something about J.D. Levin's song-craft gives you the feeling that these songs have existed all along--in a jukebox at some diner along old Route 66, halfway between Oklahoma and nowhere, waiting to be played, waiting for you to drop that quarter in and press B-52. In one of Levin's earliest recorded tracks for SFS Records, "Song for Bobby Dylan" we can hear echoes of WOODY GUTHRIE and Dylan himself. Likewise, the rare, unreleased track, "(I Don't Wanna Be) Your Man" could very well be a HANK WILLIAMS b-side. On the other side of the coin, since Levin picked up a Fender Stratocaster and took up with the kids in Far From Kansas (JEFF DUNNE [lead guitar], JOSH BROCK [bass guitar, vocals], DEVON HAMMOND [keyboards, guitar, vocals], and JASON DINKLER [drums]) he's also been crafting electric driven power-pop and indie rock tunes with much the same tenacity and precision as witnessed on his earlier recordings, though sacrificing none of his literate sensibilities.

Far From Kansas formed in 2002 when J.D. Levin and his brother, Matt, teamed up with original drummer DANIEL MCDERMOTT and keyboardist DIANA ESSEX in a garage near the 126 freeway in Ventura. A slew of local shows and the SFS Records release, CHANGE FOR THE BETTER (2004), soon followed. When Daniel and Diana departed to attend college, CHRIS DIXON was added to beef up the band's guitar sound, and FRANK CRUZ joined on as the band's new keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist. With this line-up, the band released its sophomore album, THE GHOST INSIDE OF YOU (2007) to glowing reviews from the local (and even international) press. Shortly after the album's release, drummer WILLIE MAKILING--a veteran of the Ventura county music scene--signed on behind the kit. However, just as the band was starting to reach new levels of success, Cruz was accepted into UC Berkeley's English PhD program and moved to the East Bay with bandmate Chris Dixon. Although Cruz and Dixon continued to play with Far From Kansas for a full year under these long-distance circumstances, they eventually decided to leave the band and pursue their own solo musical careers; shortly thereafter, Makiling retired from his role behind the drum kit. After these potentially band-destroying departures, Levin rebuilt Far From Kansas from the ground up and enlisted the talent of four local Ventura superstars: bassist Josh Brock, drummer Jason Dinkler, guitar prodigy Jeff Dunne, and multi-instrumentalist Devon Hammond. In this new incarnation of Far From Kansas, the band sounded tighter and more polished than ever before and began to experiment with new sonic textures and arrangements.

With these dramatic changes in the line-up, the tried and true J.D. Levin formula had changed. While still literate and well-crafted, these songs were now real, live rock and roll tunes. If the old J.D. Levin songs curled up next to you and whispered in your ear, then some of the Far From Kansas tracks were just as likely to get out of bed and kick you in the ass. The major difference between a song written by the man who truly is "Ventura's answer to Ryan Adams" and other, more recent bandwagon converts to the genre is that Levin's songs, while kicking you in the ass, are still just as likely to evoke the ghosts of Springsteen, STEINBECK, SAM COOKE, and Hank Williams, sometimes literally, sometimes simultaneously. But whether they're kicking you in the ass, or whispering in your ear, J.D. Levin and Far From Kansas are always compelling and always ready on the juke box. All you have to do is let your quarter drop.

"One of [Ventura] county’s best kept musical secrets, their sound is as much alternative country as indie rock... expect Hohner harmonicas, Hammond organs and some extremely literate songs sung by the super-cool teacher everybody wished they had in high school." -- The Ventura County Reporter

"The feelings and images invoked... recall the best of American roots rock: from Guthrie and Dylan to Wilco and the Old 97s. Fans of the "Mermaid Avenue" CDs will find resonances in [Far From Kansas]..... For all those who claim that American rock n' roll is dead, [Far From Kansas] proves the genre is very much alive and more dynamic than ever." -- Jennifer Reimer, CDBaby.com

" 'Rome Wasn’t Burned in a Day' transports the listener back to the waning moments of carefree youth, complete with a palpable nostalgia that treads the delicate territory between sorrow and joy... [The album] displays catchy, concise songwriting, enjoyable lyrics, and pristine production that skillfully balances the many voices found within each song." -- Nick Jones, iTunes review



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