Kyle Brown & The Human Condition bring roots rock to life

The former Bigfoot Buffalo frontman previewed his new band for Local Spins on WYCE, which also debuted Troll tracks for Trout, Sixman, Deadflower, Perren, Jeremy Ensley and more.

Incredible experience: The formation of Kyle Brown & The Human Condition. (Courtesy picture)

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To some fans, Kyle Brown & The Human Condition might come across as a “softer Bigfoot Buffalo,” referring to Brown’s previous rootsy rock band in West Michigan.

But for Brown, it represents a long journey toward a new, more intentional approach to merging genres with stronger vocals and songwriting.

The group sends new songs inspired mainly by the beauty of the Pacific Ocean and Hawaii, the island paradise where Brown moved to in 2019-2020 while “taking a step back from the music” – which, according to he, “has done wonders for my writing”.

Playing Founders Tonight: The band is hosting their album release show. (Courtesy picture)

“I was able to give my writing the time and patience it needed, and I became a better writer afterwards. These songs have more subtle detail, especially lyrically, compared to Bigfoot Buffalo “, he suggests.

“I also took a more natural approach to my singing instead of the rock ‘n’ roll growl with which I often approached Bigfoot Buffalo. The result was more thoughtful songs and a more developed vocalist and songwriter in myself.

Welcome to The Human Condition, a band Brown formed after moving to Montague in September 2021 and recording his new batch of songs.

He first bonded musically with an old friend, drummer Mike Schertenlieb of Muskegon’s Flexadecibel, followed by bassist Kosta Karis and finally keyboardist Mikey Olsen.

GOOD CHEMISTRY, FOUNDERS SHOW AND UPCOMING FESTIVAL APPEARANCES

“We’ve been meeting regularly since the end of January 2022, and it’s been an amazing experience working with these guys,” Brown said of the band’s “really nice organic process” for developing their sound.

“We all come from different musical backgrounds, but we all speak the same language, and their dedication to the band and their contribution to these arrangements has been an absolute blessing.”

The new band officially celebrates the release of the first studio album with a performance tonight (Friday the 22nd) at Founders Brewing Co. The free show – the first Grand Rapids appearance for The Human Condition – starts at 9pm with Nathan Walton & The Remedy also on the invoice. Details here.

To preview the new material, Brown featured two tracks from the album – “The Thicket” and “The Sun” – for this week’s edition of Local Spins on WYCE. You can watch a video for a third new track, “Built Like a Fish,” here and scroll down to listen to the radio show’s other songs and full podcast.

VIDEO: “Built Like a Fish”, Kyle Brown and the Human Condition

Brown continues to rely on songwriting idols such as John Prine and Paul Simon, but he has also found inspiration in the music of Anders Osborne, Dire Straits, Graham Nash, George Harrison, Western Centuries and The Gladiators.

Incorporating a mix of jazz, world music and reggae textures amid the roots rock vibe of his new music, Brown said he was also “reduced to more aggressive rock ‘n’ roll styles” and “slightly reluctant to the “jam” element of his past. project.

Less aggressive rock styles: Brown and the band. (Courtesy picture)

Add to that “a little more depth” in his lyrics and, voilà, Kyle Brown and The Human Condition are ready to kick off this summer with performances at the Cowpie Music Festival in Alaska in early August, North Grove Brewers in Montague on August 11 and Forest Trail Music Festival in Free Soil in late August.

Brown — who grew up in Ada, went to high school in Forest Hills Eastern and works in a carpentry shop by day — plans a stronger touring schedule for the band in 2023.

“We already have the next record on the books, or started on the books,” he said. “It was a really fun process bringing this project to life.”

This week’s edition of Local Spins on WYCE – which highlights local and regional music on WYCE (88.1 FM) and online at wyce.org at 11 a.m. Friday – also featured new music from Troll for Trout, Lost Magic, Sixman, Perren, Deadflower, Bradley Sinclair, James Spalink and jeremy ensleyas well as pieces of Samuel Nalangira and Nathan Walton and the Cure. Listen to the radio show here.

PODCAST: Local Tours on WYCE (7/22/22)

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