Praise for Break Apart
"Do yourself a favor and take some time to sit with Tenderfoot's new album. It's an album that forces you to ask yourself the big questions, to reflect, and to rebuild. Dreamy doesn't even cut it when describing their sound..." - NYLON Magazine
"A delightfully folk-rock soundtrack that's somehow simultaneously mournful and resiliently hopeful." - OUT magazine
"Lush and absolutely massive sounding, “Break Apart” is the work of an artist who has undergone radical change. As the gripping title cut lays out, the result is a brand of pastoral dream rock that’s gloriously melancholic as it patiently ripples across the sky and out towards the horizon. Yet despite all these bold reinventions the one thing that hasn’t changed is Woods’ emotionally naked voice, which serves up equal portions of defeat and defiance..." - KEXP
Tenderfoot, a four-piece dream-folk band based in Seattle & Brooklyn, started out as a solo project on the highways and back roads of the US. In 2010, songwriter Adam Kendall Woods lived on the road for a year in a vintage camper trailer towed behind a Volkswagen Rabbit pickup truck. Adam and his partner made ends meet flipping furniture, selling art, and designing projects for family and friends. “We just needed to leave Michigan,” he recalls. “We felt creatively stuck. We thought we’d glean whatever we could from different art scenes around the country and bring all that back to our community in Ann Arbor.”
The trip played out quite differently. After several months on the road, the two men found themselves feeling stranded, frightened, and falling out of love. “I’m not sure the outskirts of this country were ready for two wandering queer artists in a bright-orange camper trailer,” Adam laughs. “The stress of being on the road definitely took its toll.” With a thrift-store guitar, Adam began to craft what would become Tenderfoot’s first songs, documenting and escaping his relationship via songwriting. “I grew up wishing the love songs I heard on my mom’s alarm-clock radio were being sung from a man to another man,” Adam says about his childhood in Florida. “I just didn’t see my kind of love reflected back at me at all.” After leaving the South at 21, it took Adam years of moving around to find his first lovers and musical peers. “I wanted to record those first experiences in my own way, but wasn’t quite sure how to do it.”
After a heart-wrenching year on the road, and a short stint in San Francisco, Adam found his way to the Pacific Northwest. In Seattle, Adam dove into the city’s diverse music scene, meeting Jude Miqueli (drums), Gabriel Molinaro (keys), and Darcey Zoller (strings) to round out the band’s sound. With an unabashedly romantic, experimental approach to songwriting and the lush dynamics of a full band, Tenderfoot started to create their own potent emotional landscapes. Tenderfoot’s first EP Red Coat from 2012 was an elegy for the road-weary relationship that brought Adam to Seattle, sparsely arranged and held together with the singer’s warbled voice. A handful of singles since further delve into the fervor of intimacy and existential anxieties, while experimenting with different musical genres and production techniques.
Their new album Break Apart (out February 2, 2018) was recorded and produced between the spring of 2015 and the winter of 2017. Encompassing the loss of loved ones, health scares, and strained relationships, the two years it took to create Break Apart was a time the members of Tenderfoot could come together and feel a sense of joy, queer community and creative progress. “We jumped around a lot to different practice and recording spaces, watching the city of Seattle change around us,” Adam says about the recording process. “A few of the places where we made and recorded music don’t exist anymore.” Those feelings of displacement, paired with the emotional upheaval of the band members during recording, culminated in the title track “Break Apart”. The album is a constellation between these moments of turbulence and heartache, but with the hopeful glow of found family.