News flash: Some indie bands actually enjoy the polished, crafted sound of pop music. Though Billy Schuh, frontman and main songwriter for Foundry Field Recordings is a Pixies fan, he grew up on British pop like The Beatles and The Kinks and discovered indie bands with a handle on the pop format, such as Built to Spill and Guided by Voices, in college. “I have become entrenched in the formula of the pop song,” he explained.
Speaking on their current sound, Schuh said, “I will keep the juxtaposition of upbeat/uptempo music with darker lyrics that was a component of Prompts/Miscues,” their first album. However, their upcoming album, Hierarchy [Procession], will move away from the technological experimentation of previous recordings and focus on “organic instrumentation.” Schuh has recently struggled to adopt a healthier lifestyle, and he feels this new approach to writing songs will reflect the personal nature of the songs themselves.
As for the other members of the band, Foundry Field Recordings has undergone several lineup changes in the past few years. Although Schuh worked with 11 people on the new record, he is performing live with only three members of Bald Eagle (labelmates on Emergency Umbrella Records): Justin Nardy on bass, Danny Matteson on guitar and Justin McCrady on the drums and contributing vocals. Because of the constant change of members, the band is basically Schuh’s pet project.
“All of the responsibilies for the Foundry Field Recordings fall on my shoulders. It’s a much different dynamic now, but it’s one that I have fully embraced,” Schuh said. These changes, he feels, have actually helped him in his quest to put his years of unhealthy living behind him. “I have given up drinking and such and now take a much healthier day-to-day approach,” he said.
But Schuh also feels that the four-piece incarnation of the band is the best thing for live shows. “I am a proponent of live sound versus recorded sound, so the live band will be a little more energetic and a lot more scaled back production-wise,” Schuh said.
Playing the Courtyard Café on Friday, Feb. 28 with locals Santa, Foundry Field Recordings will provide a mix of older songs and new tracks from Hierarchy [Procession], which is due for release in late summer.

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