Big Potato Records

The Loose Salute
Milky Moon

President Sweetheart



BUY Common Prayer's debut full length digital release or CD (Ltd 6-page Delux Recycled Card) There Is A Mountain (2010)

Click here to listen to Common Prayer in the BPR Audio Player.

Spring 2009: In the english village of Steventon, Brooklin songwriter/principal heretic Jason Sebastian Russo (lead Hopewell/Mercury Rev alum) and a constituency of british pop talent hauled several half-tuned guitars, myriad scraps of rusty metal and a piano with a knee-high flood watermark into a cow barn on Hill Farm. So was born Common Prayer’s first album, There Is A Mountain.

There Is A Mountain's eleven elaborately cinematic outsider-pop tracks, violin innuendos and organ riffs tangle with scrap metal samples and found sounds, opens with the beautiful, frazzled skiffle of IN THE MORNING. Then dips into the skeletal boogie of HOPEWELL. Words of loss and cracked hopes. MARRIAGE SONG happily weds tin can percussion to strings and country slide above which glides Russo’s yearning vocal. He has one of those voices. The kind that’s at once high lonesome, intimate and rocking. Rarely have our ears heard fragile hooks soar so sweet and sad since Mark Linkous was in his spidery pomp. SARA G is a bouncy singalong that belies its rude and cryptic reminiscing. Even the more 'classic' songwriting of ME, YOU and OF SAINTS, unpeel into little psychedelic outros or the sound of a fruity voiced Welshman (no kidding) declaiming a long lost radio show. FREE AIR is like finding Skip Spence on holiday, while MONEYSPIDER might be a plangent hymn to love in the face of global capitalism. The finale EVERY ONE builds to a lush horn and string hymnal that feels epic but still clocks in under four minutes.

Recorded with Truck Festival impressarios Joe and Robin Bennett (Dusty's Dreaming Spires and Danny & The Champions of the World) & and Jason's partner Alexandra Marvar, with occasional sound design by his brother Justin Russo (Hopewell/The Silent League).

It’s no small thing to make a record both weighty and loose. Funny and sad. Seemingly throwaway, but full of beautifully wrought arrangements. We think its the sound of a band taking off.

18.07.10 – Buffalo Bar – Cardiff
22.07.10 – w/ Neil Halstead, Silent Leauge & Maps, Upstairs at the Relentless Garage – London
25.07.10 – Truck Festival – Steventon, Oxfordshire, England
26.07.10 – w/ Caroline Weeks (Bat for Lashes) @ The Coach House – Kemptown, Brighton, England
01.08.10 - Shhh Fest – Cecil Rhodes House, Camden, London