It's hard to capture the infectious, affable mood of a Garden Variety concert, but the band wanted to do just that when they set out to record their first album. They wanted to come as close as possible to the feel of their live shows without the hassles of inadequate sound systems and extraneous noise, so they did the next best thing - they recorded live in the studio. All the parts were played at the same time, so the musicians could play off each other and enjoy the music instead of worrying about the performance.

"Canyon of Tears" is a good example of the unique collaboration that makes this album shine. Though originally planned as a solo performance by singer/guitarist Dug Moldawsky, the group played along once in rehearsal and then once again in the studio. Having played it just twice, the resulting track was a pleasant surprise, even for the band.

From the immediacy of "Here and Now" to the warmth of "Grace," the thoughtful "Eyes Closed" to the funny "No Shirt," Garden Variety comes together kind of like a salad - this bit's crunchy, that bit's sweet, all jumbled together into one very tasty mix.

Here And Now * Beats * Soul Hands * Winter * Grace * No Shirt * Eyes Closed * Why * Beneath The Wheel * Canyon Of Tears

Excerpted from The Racer Record, the Racer Records newsletter.