Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
There sure can be a lot in us that gets downplayed. There's so much that just gets tamped down, like the misunderstood foxtails, guarding the creek bed on a hot summer day. Our backs get bent, often rebounding with time, other times not at all. We find that our glory simmers when it should do more, when it stays too humble. We look back at time differently, like it's grown a beard and we hardly recognize it. It can become suddenly unrecognizable, or it can become clearer. The places that we grew up in can begin to explain us more, the longer we're around and let them. If we're honest with ourselves, we've always known where we're from and escaping is quite difficult.
The music of Nashville-via-Wisconsin's John Paul Roney, as Boom Forest, has the markings of a man who delights in the particulars of the expansive body of work that people and the land that they've come across have developed. He dives into these voluminous shelves, as if it were all written, poring over what's amounted to little, or what's amounted to a lot. It's taking what he's found to be mostly true about himself and how he's been raised - by the people who have raised him - and letting it ring softly, so as to discover the nuance in the gait and the curls. He discovers things about hearts and skin and their accomplices that he's surprised to have found. He approaches, always, with tender pads, doing his best to find the little things that cause his own private explosions - the ones that will bring him all the light that he can hold or touch.