Recorded almost exclusively live in bassist's John Brigham's home studio, this debut album truly reflects the "Big Sky" sound that characterizes a Way Up South live show. The band insisted on producing the CD LIVE, with no extra special studio effects or add-ons, so they could give the fans an experience akin to a seeing the band in person.
The decision was made not to set any limits on time or the length of the jams so that fans would get a real taste of the signature Way Up South "Big Sky" sound. Says guitarist Charley Carrozo, "Most of all, we made a record that represents our aspirations and passions. That is why we are all so proud of this record. The album was recorded with no restraints on the music…The sound of Way Up South is supposed to be felt as much as heard, just like at a live show, and between the mixes and the performances I think we achieved that with this first album."
Charley has been writing songs for twenty four years and dusted off many of his more southern or country sounding songs for this project. With a message for a hopeful future, the song Further On opens the EP much as it would a Way Up South live show. Featuring guitarist Paul Ferguson on the slide guitar, the song Country Time sets the live “good times” tone, talking about living in the moment with a positive eye to the future. Things take a dark turn on the critically-acclaimed song Ghost; “This is a song you immerse yourself in, as though it were a river, and when you emerge you find yourself clean again” raves Victor Infante of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Mid-set staple "Until Then," co-written by guitarist Paul Ferguson and sung by Bubba Maider, is a beautiful love song infused with an epic building guitar solo. Track 5, Just One Night, is a good-time song riffing on the age-old themes of casual rebound sex that always gets people dancing. Finally, Down Like Rain caps-off the EP with a classic southern rock jam, including an epic organ solo by Dave Osoff and slide solo by Paul Ferguson.
Led by guitarist and front man Gary Backstrom, who is often considered "one of the most underrated, fluid, and melodic players in the Northeast", The Gary Backstrom Band features clever, hook filled songwriting and arrangements with intense interaction among the musicians. Their unique sound is interwoven with exciting, unpredictable improvisation that can only be heard in the best live acts on the scene today.