Really, I shouldn’t have been as surprised as I was to realize that José Contreras’ eponymous new album is his first solo record after 25 years as the core of By Divine Right, a band that has seen a staggeringly impressive list over 30 musicians revolve around it. In 2013, when Contreras reunited with producer and past collaborator Lee Maslin, Maslin asked Contreras why he’d never done a solo record, and the answer was simple: no one had ever asked him to.
Thus started the pair off on a journey that took them to Contreras’ Cicano Power studio in Caledon, ON, where they captured the quiet and contemplative collection of old songs and new that are on José Contreras.
“Past The Stars” is a more recent song in the By Divine Right canon, having opened 2013’s Organized Accidents LP with a supple groove and relaxed disposition. Contreras’ solo version, premiering on Quick Before It Melts today, is a far more contemplative, spiritual affair that reflects the reverential and organic nature of the new album’s recording.
José Contreras is out on July 8, 2014, via Squirtgun Records.
Tags: By Divine Right, José Contreras