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National Steel - JPop.com
Artist info
National Steel

National Steel

National Steel


National Steel is the solo recording project of New-York City singer/songwriter/producer, Michael Hattem. The band existed as a live act from 2005 to 2006, but has always been focused on recording. Hattem self-produced two albums from 2006 to 2007. The first album, Anhedonia, was an innovative record that was very much a "studio album," taking Hattem's rootsy Americana-based songs and dressing them up in orchestral instruments, mellotrons, synths Read more on Last.fm
National Steel is the solo recording project of New-York City singer/songwriter/producer, Michael Hattem. The band existed as a live act from 2005 to 2006, but has always been focused on recording. Hattem self-produced two albums from 2006 to 2007. The first album, Anhedonia, was an innovative record that was very much a "studio album," taking Hattem's rootsy Americana-based songs and dressing them up in orchestral instruments, mellotrons, synths, and samples, all played by Hattem except for the bass, which was played by the amazing Rich Stillwell. The result was called "freaked-out Americana" by one internet reviewer.

For the second record, "VVT," Hattem went completely solo, playing all instruments on the record. The record further consolidated the "National Steel sound," which is built on acoustic guitar arrangements layered with organs, mellotrons, strings, and horns. For all of the music, it is the songwriting of Hattem that makes the records stand out as something different from your average roots-rock, alt country, or indie rock records. Mixing country and folk songwriting influences with musical influences from 60s baroque pop and late 90s-early 00s indie pop, National Steel ends up with a distinct sound to match its distinct lyrics. Highly poetic, Hattem's impressionistic lyrics conjure images in the listener's head with almost each line. The combination of ethereal instrumentation and "cosmological poetry” creates what one reviewer called a "pop quality that hearkens back to a more carefree time where a little bit of wistfulness went a long way." Another reviewer summed up National Steel by saying, "What's perhaps most appealing about this artist is the earnestness and genuine feelings expressed.

No cynicism, glibness, self-indulgence, wallowing, gimmicks or swagger - just a refreshing feeling of open-hearted, self-reliant, intelligent, reflective, old Americanism. And a great voice and musical ability to deliver the feeling." Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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