By Michael Lello
What started as a simple home recording effort for Kyle Wall has turned into “The Rattling,” the debut album for Wharfer, Wall’s one-man project.
“I sort of was off not playing music for a while,” said Wall, who was a member of Scranton’s The Minor White before moving to Brooklyn. “I was in the Minor White thing for a long time, but everyone went their separate ways in 2009. The Minor White guys were doing other projects, and I was working some music industry jobs.
“Last year or so, I really started to write songs and do stuff on my own, which I had never done; trying to sing the right way and develop a voice.”
The album has been featured by media outlets including CMJ, Relix, American Songwriter and Spin, which is currently streaming the entire record.
Wall said he recorded rough demos on his phone, playing acoustic guitar, a borrowed mandolin dating from the 1920s, a piano and an old Casiotone synthesizer, “sort of these weird instruments that I had.”
He planned to flesh the songs out in the studio, but he liked how the initial recordings sounded and will release them Aug. 27.
“It was a learning experience,” Wall said. “I’m not trying to be on a label or go on tour and have a Kickstarter. That said, I wanted to get it professionally mastered.”
The digital release will be available via the usual outlets, he said: iTunes, Spotify and Amazon.
Wall said the album “is definitely a folk project at heart,” with “a weird spooky edge.” He cited Will Oldham (Bonnie “Prince” Billy) and Bill Callahan as musicians he admires.
Any live shows to support “The Rattling” have yet to be scheduled.
“I have thought about it, and obviously with the talented friends I have, mostly the Scranton guys like Roy (Williams), Shane (O’Hara) and Ian (O’Hara), who I still see regularly, I would love to do stuff with them. But granted, if you take the five Minor White guys, there are probably 12 to 15 musical projects going on. So I don’t think I’d be able to rely on one band. We’ll see.”