Alt-country/alt-rock artist Seneko, aka Stan Olshefski, released his fourth EP, 69 Camaro, just a few days ago via Torrez Music Group.
Talking about the EP, Seneko shares, “I really wanted to make something fresh and have always wanted to do a guitar-driven rock record – So I did. The downtime during the pandemic gave me an opportunity to write a lot so there was plenty to choose from. I also helped produce it along with Mike Purcell and Paul Scholten which was a first for me and a total blast. I went back to the studio (County Q, Nashville) where I made my first record (‘Seneko’) mainly because co-producer Paul Scholten is also a drummer, and I really wanted his powerful driving beat. Plus, Paul works with Luis Espillat, a terrific bass player who layered in very cool bass lines and provided the BGVs. Jon Conley, the guitar BEAST, led the charge and cranked it up – I’m really thrilled with the result. At the same time, beyond delivering a big rock vibe, I wanted my vocals to not get lost because the songs tell five little stories so they’re right up front.”
Seneko’s primary influence is The Jayhawks, who he’s seen live more than 20 times.
Seneko says, “The first time I heard the Jayhawks’ “Blue” I was floored and dug into their past. Then later on the power ballad “Trouble” off Sound of Lies – one of my favorite songs. Period. It’s the melody, the hook, the truth that shines through their vaguely abstract lyrics. Their whole body of work – even my least favorite – is relevant and resonates. Also, the fact that they never got super famous. I certainly get that, yet they drive on with their art to this day though they’re in their 50s.”
Recorded at Nashville’s County Q Studio, 69 Camaro features the talents of Seneko (vocals), Jon Conley (guitars), Luis Espaillat (bass, BGVs), and Paul Scholten (drums). The EP was engineered by Nick “Ace” Lutz and mixed and mastered by Mike Purcell, who, along with Scholten and Seneko produced.
Embracing five tracks, highlights on 69 Camaro include the title track, rolling out on heavy, gleaming guitars, imbuing the tune with a Tom Petty-like feel, rife with hints of country-rock. Seneko’s voice, evocative and smooth, gives the lyrics melancholic suffusions. A dazzling guitar solo, gritty and growling, infuses the song with tight, abrasive textures.
“For Her Love,” a personal favorite, travels on jangly country-flavored guitars topped by Seneko’s drawling tones. There’s a tasty two-step flow to this track, rippling with undulating glistening surfaces. While “Writing on the Wall” kicks off with layers of thrumming guitars riding a luscious, driving rhythm. This track features wall-of-sound waves of glimmering guitars interlaced with stylish accents.
69 Camaro is superb, full of intoxicating guitars, heavy-duty rhythms, and the satisfying, deluxe vocals of Seneko.