Tumbleweed Mile is the brainchild of
singer/songwriter/guitarist Chris Merola. The origins of Tumbleweed Mile date to the early ‘90s when Rain Deputies, a highly regarded indie/roots outfit fronted by Merola, gave performances in support of their self-titled debut album that garnered raves from both
national and regional press, including a ‘Jackpot Pick!’ in the pages of CMJ. This caught the attention of Coca-Cola, leading to the bands’ song “Somewhere In Between” to be used as the musical centerpiece of a national radio ad campaign. After six years of touring, Rain Deputies drifted apart and Merola
released the solo album Straight Answer In A Crooked Town on the Cropduster label. The successful tour following was highlighted by a rousing performance at that year’s SXSW. It was during this period that Merola and drummer/percussionist Peter Wilson (Ex-Sons) joined forces forming Tumbleweed Mile to produce their debut album, Paint The Morning Gone on their own Yonder Recordings imprint. Later, bassist Michael Levine was recruited for the band’s second and current release, Devil’s In The Details.
From the opening string crescendo on “Wind Knows Your Name”, to the musical collapse that closes “The Man That Never Died”, details unravel onto miniature worlds where memories cast long shadows and a million miles is all that stands between lovers face to face. Where Main Streets become mainlines and nights blur into a hazy tremolo reverie. This just partially touches upon a recording full of powerful songs awash in sepia tone imagery also reflected in the album’s collage cover art.
Blending a sensitive combination of modern instrumentation and recording technologies with straight-ahead acoustic & electric guitars, upright piano and odd sampled loops, Merola’s songs breed familiarity without drowning in fake nostalgia. Quite a feat, and how beautifully appropriate for an outfit named Tumbleweed Mile. The band’s most recent output, Devil’s In The Details, continues on that hybrid path
of the modern and the timeless that they have made for themselves. It’s a route that Tumbleweed mile’s
followers have long expected and taken over the years. But, as implied by the albums’ title, it’s the
minutiae that inhabits and shapes each song both musically and lyrically, that envelops the listener
and has them coming back every time.