Kyle Craft Dolls Of Highland on 2LP + Download
Solo Debut from Singer/Songwriter/Multi-Instrumentalist
Kyle Craft grew up in a tiny Louisiana town on the banks of the Mississippi, where he spent most of his time catching alligators and rattlesnakes instead of playing football or picking up the guitar. He's not the product of a musical family, and bands never came through town. It was only a chance trip to K-Mart that gave him his first album, a David Bowie hits compilation that helped inspire him eventually to channel his innate feral energy into songwriting and rock and roll. That self-made talent drives every note of Dolls of Highland, Craft's exhilarating, fearless solo debut. "This album is the dark corner of a bar," he says. "It's that feeling at the end of the night when you're confronted with ‘now what?'"
Dolls of Highland crashes open with “Eye of a Hurricane,” a whirlwind of ragtime piano and Craft’s dynamic, enthralling vocals. He calls it a “jealous song,” stirred up by the memories of an ill-fated crush and a drama of “weird little connections, a spider web of what the fuck?” The swinging, resonant “Lady of the Ark” is also tied up in that web, “a very incestuous song,” says Craft. Most of the characters and atmospheres on the album come from in and around Shreveport, where Craft briefly returned while recording the album for an intensely productive reckoning with his past. He stayed in a friend’s laundry room in the Highland neighborhood, where he recorded the whole album in two months on a home studio rig. “I dedicated the album to Shreveport and called it Dolls of Highland for all the girls and ghosts in town who influenced it so strongly.”
Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence helped refine and mix the album to move it from its DIY beginnings to a more fully realized work. Craft played most of the instruments on the album, and the record captures the power of his live performance. And then there's Craft's unforgettable voice – "I'm fully aware that I have a very abrasive, very loud voice, but Bob Dylan is the one that taught me to embrace that," says Craft. Craft's talent and singular creativity move the conversation into new and unpredictable places. And this album is very much about moving forward.