Demo EP





After spending so many years in the Dallas area, being completely immersed in the local music scene, I still find myself keeping an eye out for new tunes from my hometown. One of the most talented musicians in the area is a man named Peter Schmidt, who has fronted bands including Funland and Legendary Crystal Chandelier. Schmidt’s crooning vocals catapulted his songs of heartbreak and sorrow to a level high above the rest of his peers, writing some of the most memorable and intelligent music the Dallas area has ever heard. Somehow, his talent has gotten locked away in the vacuum that is North Texas. This seems to be a common problem for far too many bands, which is a shame. Schmidt is an international artist in the making, who is just temporarily stuck in the quicksand of Dallas. With two bands behind him, he has been hard at work with his first solo project, currently under the name Peter Schmidt & His Gentlemen Scholars. An EP of his current demos landed on my desk yesterday, and I have yet to stop listening. Brilliant string arrangements, slinky piano lines and lounge-fueled keyboards swirl around his fantastic voice and biting lyrics. For demo tracks, these beautiful, sorrow-filled tunes sound better than just about every completed album I have heard over the past month. Songs such as “My Heart Sinks” and “Long Lonely Summer” overflow with stunning melodies deeply rooted in British music, looking back to Morrissey’s greatest ballads for inspiration. “Sometimes” is a slow, simple track that features the deeper side of Schmidt’s voice, supported by a lounge-country hybrid sound similar to Elvis Costello’s The Delivery Man. “Whose Side Are You On” lightens up the mood a bit, giving us a bright pop orchestral pop song reminiscent of the finer work of Belle & Sebastian. Saving the best for last, “Takin’ It On The Nose” is the big closer, slathered in vocal harmonies and accompanied by far one of the greatest melodies in Schmidt’s career. This is the song that could, and should, put him on the map. Making beautifully intelligent pop music is a rare quality, which Peter Schmidt has down to perfection. Record labels should be climbing over each other to check these tunes out, which you can sample for yourself on his official website.

Peter Schmidt & His Gentlemen Scholars
Unsigned

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Demo EP