Recording artist and worship leader, Ryan Clair, releases his second project with Old Bear Records on Friday, January 24th. 'Among the Pines' was recorded at Old Bear Studios and produced by Chris Hoisington. Whereas his previous Old Bear release, 'Less Traveled Road' showcased a unique style of outlaw country interwoven with Southern Gospel tones incorporating old hymns reminiscent of Johnny Cash; 'Among the Pines' embraces his upbringing in a small California mountain community and his current home in the state of Washington where he resides with his wife and five children.
Many of the songs begin and end with nature sounds captured in the mountains near his home to frame the heart of the EP and bring you into Ryan's world through the eyes of a man searching for God in the day to day and the nature that surrounds him set to a soundtrack of acoustically driven songs that are more in the singer-songwriter folk vein.
In 2018 Ryan Clair's 'Less Traveled Road' LP introduced us to his impressive, gritty, southern rock chops with an absolute barn burner of a record. The year 2019 found Ryan adjusting course in more ways than one: he made the westward move to the scenic Pacific Northwest where, inspired by his new surroundings, he penned a starkly minimal sophomore album.
'Among the Pines' is a musical journey of the soul with Clair positioned as the narrator on a solo trek through the mountains. Intentionally never reaching the sheer rock bigness his previous album had, he instead steers into an alt-country simplicity that flows from song to song. This rustic approach makes the album a very easy listen that keeps the richness of his baritone vocals and the weathered wisdom of his lyrics front and center.
The EP kicks off with the sonic instrumental 'The Trail Head' which sets the mood for tracks that flow seamlessly one into the other with the sound of a howling wind or a crackling fire. By the time you get to 'This Old Coat' - a song that aches with a longing for eternal renewal - you realize that you've been led by the hand into that ache as well. We trust you will find this album a comforting friend on your own (at times) lonely travels.