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"The songs ... cover a trio of topics: political, philosophical, and sentimental, and convey a sad feeling, an aura of melancholy, as if confronting an impasse, like a wall, around which you can neither advance nor retire nor sidle away....  Although suffused with a sense of gloominess ... [this album] is ineffably beautiful ..."

Randy Radic, v13

"This haunting masterpiece is a chilling exploration of the mysterious and thought-provoking, a sonic tapestry that will send shivers down your spine and leave you questioning the very nature of reality."

Javier, Vents Magazine

"This is a powerful album ... bold ... the sadness of what we're going through today ... set to music."

Zoe Dune

"[Anders/O'Bitz continue] their knack for truth-seeking introspection and poignant, moving themes set amidst a folk-Americana styling....  The build-up here is fantastic, reminding fondly of Neil Young."

Mike Mineo, Obscure Sound

The Unencumbered Ones

Another Anders/O'Bitz/Butler Project

Released February 5, 2024

Produced and Mixed by Mike Butler
Mastered by Jamal Ruhe  

Eric describes the spirit of the album much as he describes the album's title track, The Unencumbered Ones" -- “an extended contemplation of the cost of isolation.”

Three of the last four songs on the album continue with themes of isolation ("True Love ...." and "So On Our Own") and failed attempts to connect in a lasting way ("Address Unknown"). 

 

The album ends with "Sweet Youth," which is a dirge for the fantasies of youth as they have to encounter the challenges of aging.

"Heavy Weather," the second track, may seem like a climate change song, but it isn't.  It is a song from Eric's 2011 EP, Remains In Me.  Eric wanted to "revisit" this song because he loves the way it sounds in this more Americana style. 

 

The song is actually about what the Native Americans on the plains experienced as Europeans brutally moved them off their land and killed millions of buffalo for sport--so we think the Americana style fits better with what the song is about.  

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