San Francisco-based ALO (Animal Liberation Orchestra) released their third full-length, Man of the World, on buddy Jack Johnson's Brushfire Records Tuesday. The disc, which we reviewed here, features laid-back washes, hook-laden rockers and plenty of sunshine. Leading the way the way to this blissed-out vacation spot are the soothing piano playing and summery vocals of Zach Gill.
ALO will perform material from the album Wednesday at Fingerprints record store in Long Beach. It's the first show of a national tour with ample Southern California dates. OCW spoke to Gill by phone recently about the new album, soaking up sweet vibes in Hawaii, his buddy Johnson and pre-tour anxiety.
OC Weekly (Wade Tatangelo): Where you at today?
Zach Gill: I'm in Hawaii working with Jack Johnson on his new record.
Nice. Speaking of new records, let's talk about ALO's Man of the World. From the super mellow opener “Suspended” to rambunctious track 10 “The Champ,” the album covers a lot of ground.
The songs are more of a reaction to each other. We recorded that first mellow one after a bunch of intense things.
How did you approach this record differently than past projects?
There was a certain looseness. Most of it was just recorded with everyone in the room, so it was not even possible to overdub everyone's parts. In the past, we had a tendency to go over every part with a microscope.
How did recording at Jack Johnson's Mango Tree studio on the North Shore of Oahu influence the music?
It's tucked away and certainly an idyllic place to record an album. It's a great vibe and you can't help but fall into that vibe.
Man of the World, like your past records, doesn't sound like anything I would call jam band. But ALO consistently gets lumped into that category. Are you comfortable with the term?