Eyes Adrift

by Marc Ring
Nightlife, Carbondale Illinois
October 17-23, 2002

Anyone wondering what Eyes Adrift is all about will have to check them out for themselves. With a sound that can be best described as just rock ‘n’ roll, they deliver a blast of tweaked classic-rock sounds with the occasional trumpet and acoustic twelve-string guitar. To truly grasp the new sound created by this trio, which plays Tuesday, October 22 at the Copper Dragon, listeners should purchase their recently released self-titled debut album.

Eyes Adrift was born when former lead member of the Meat Puppets, Curt Kirkwood, decided to embark on a solo tour. During one show, a certain bass player from a little band called Nirvana dropped in for a listen. Instantly noting that Kirkwood still commanded the stage, Krist Novoselic suggested the two get together and jam. Not three days later, Kirkwood was contacted by former Sublime drummer Bud Gaugh for the very same reason.

What seemd to be a coincidence turned out to be fate. The three realized that playing together created something better than they possibly expected. After a short trial tour, Eyes Adrift welcomed the feedback from audiences and started recording an album. A scant three weeks later they were finished. “Everything came together so quickly,” said Novoselic in a recent interview. “We were really pleased and a little bit startled. It’s a tried-and-true rock ‘n’ roll record.”

Eyes Adrift was formed after the deaths of Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain, Sublime’s Brad Nowell, and Kirkwood’s wife Michelle Tardif – although not necessarily as a result of these losses. Eyes Adrift’s members are simply three guys who want to play music.

Kirkwood remains the lead singer, but vocal credits are also given to Novoselic, as he sings lead on two of the recordings. One song, “Inquiring Minds,” has the former Nirvana member blasting the media for exploiting the death of Jon Benet Ramsey. Novoselic said he identified with the situation because of what he experienced with the death of Kurt Cobain in 1994. The other song he sings on the album is “Pasted”, a fifteen-minute piece that sounds like something one would call an alternative-country standard, but ends up in a raucous, unrelenting jam.The songs are all written by Krikwood and Novoselic, which is obvious with choice cuts like “Alaska” where one might suspect it of being an actual Meat Puppets tune. Most of the album though, sounds nothing like the music of their former bands. “Dottie Dawn and Julie Jewel” is rockabilly in spirit, while the opening track “Sleight of Hand” has a definite jazz feel. All in all, they are a rock band that can only be described as Eyes Adrift.

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