Tristan Welch & Ron Oshima - God Bless America

by Tristan Welch

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johx771 An intriguing mix of ambient and free-flow jazz that feels like a mournful, melancholy but beatiful drive through the torn social fabric of present day America. The melodic woodwind skills displayed by Oshima are expertly gelled with the swells, pads and slightly dark ambient guitar work on display from Welch. A captivating, refreshing, innovative and most of all very enjoyable release that I will be coming back to. Favorite track: Bless.
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nayeem_m I had to get in the right mindset but appreciate that this is a record you need to meet half way. And all the more rewarding for it. Raw, urgent and dreamlike all at once. That sax speaks volumes and the distortion deep in the third track hits like a ton of bricks.
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  • God Bless America - CD
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    Ron Oshima is a working-class musician that plays soprano, alto, and tenor saxophones and flute. He has been playing around the DC metro area for over 20 years with various groups of many varieties as well as working as an award-winning sound designer. Tristan Welch is an experimental guitar player that creates heavy ambient movements via heavy minimalism.

    Together, Tristan Welch and Ron Oshima have created three new pieces collectively titled “God Bless America”. These pieces create an ambient atmosphere with a mixture of free jazz. Each piece has a strong focus in their own respective keys – G, B and A. God Bless America was recorded live at The Brink outside of The Nations Capital on Election Day (US) 11/8/16. The concept behind God Bless America is actually pretty simple - we are not nationalist and we could all use a little help

    " I have never heard any kind of music like this before. It’s always an exciting feeling of discovery, to open your ears and mind to a new sound. People sometimes can become jaded, feeling that with all the songs already written, it’s not worth going out of one’s comfort zone. Tristan Welch & Ron Oshima have developed a sound that’s hard to stop listening to. It’s bold, creative and at times mesmerizing. Ron Oshima plays jazz inspired Saxophone over the dark and menacing guitar by Tristan Welch. The languid soundscapes provided by Tristan add more than just a background. He is holding the rhythm, building the foundation of everything boundlessly."

    "Welch’s work acts as a stark, dystopian foundation to Oshima’s film noir delivery, painting a picture of America as the damsel in distress, or perhaps the femme fatale. It’s hard to know these days just what’s going in America’s head; we just know she’s in trouble. (Alibi Pierce)"

    "Notes creep up in slow, metallic attack. A mood sets in just as the sax begins its lonesome burrow into your subconscious. Controlled bursts of avant-garde jazz streak melodiously but sorrowfully over ambient metallic pad sounds. At some point the notes pick up speed and intensity but never so much that they become grating. The sax is a good reinterpretation of hardbop vocabulary. This piece could be on a great album in the 1950s just as easily as it could be on bandcamp today (which it is). It’s a beautiful, restrained piece of work. It deals subtly with the harmonies. The ambient noise is always slowly shimmering just below the surface. These two artists play off one another well. Both are masters of understatement. I would play this at a funeral, or during church, or to sing me to sleep. It’s melancholy and introspective but always beautiful." ISSUES MAGAZINE

    "Atmospheric, ambient drone of the guitar, circulating through the background like a impending significant event that could possibly change your life for the better or for the worse but before that occurs it gently strokes your brow and puts you at ease in an uneasy way, (Wayne Rex)"

    "God Bless America, is a weirdly evocative thing to say at the beginning of 2017 — for now at least, it almost automatically captures our deer-in-headlights moment in American politics. Even the album artwork tends to contribute, a photograph showing Welch and Oshima posed in front of Matthew Riegner’s American Flag painting. The collection is heavy and portentous, appropriately enough for anyone from DC. Throughout the election they’ve watched a cloud of cloying, orange-colored braggadocio gather around the thick clock tower of his leased and renovated Pennsylvania Avenue Post Office. Particularly in that shadow, Oshima’s soulful horns and Welch’s atmospheres conjure a strong noir flavor. (Dwight Pavlovic)"

    Includes unlimited streaming of Tristan Welch & Ron Oshima - God Bless America via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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God 14:24
Bless 11:42
America 11:50


released January 13, 2017

Tristan Welch - Guitar
Ron Oshima - Saxophone

Recorded / Mixed by Mike Reina @ The Brink
Mastered by Mark Beazley
Cover Photo by Steven Martin
American Flag Painting by Matthew Riegner
Album Art & Layout by Beau Finley


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Tristan Welch Washington, D.C.

Tristan Welch is a musician & artist based in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area. His focus is creating soundscapes via electric guitar, treated with electronics. A self-professed fascination with minimalism and repetition is evident in his work- a hypnotic layering of melodics that evolve and dissipate while maintaining a steady tone center. ... more

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