The Via Maris: A Song Worth Checking Out

By Martin Cizmar

So today we have something cool courtesy of So Much Silence, a blog run by Kevin Murphy, local man-about-town, former Republic-an and occasional New Times contributor.

The Via Maris, a local band has a free song available for download on their MySpace. Says singer-songwriter Chad Sundin:

“In celebration of my son Willem’s first birthday this past Sunday, September 21, I put up the song I wrote just after he was born. It was written to convey the quiet joy of new life in our lives. Find a peaceful place and listen, if you like.”

Murph – my friend Albert Ching, leaving the East Valley Tribune next week for a gig as a music editor at our sister paper in Orange County, says I am allowed to call him that – is right, it’s a “gorgeous, selfless song.” I don’t say this lightly – or just because a guy with an acoustic guitar is singing about Chicago – but The Via Maris has a real Sufjan Stevens vibe, though certainly a lot twangier.

“Proud Chicago” is beautiful and I’m also quite fond of “Bicentennial,” especially the marching percussion and the way “The Star Spangled Banner” blends in at the close. Someone ought to book these guys to open a Suns game. In the meantime, they’ll be at Hollywood Alley on Sept. 27, Modified Arts on Oct. 11 and the Yucca on Oct. 21.

And while you’re at Murph’s blog (again, I have permission) be sure to check out his continuing feature, I Used to Love H.E.R., where a wide assortment of folks from the Internets discuss their top hip-hop albums and songs. It’s a lot of socially-conscious stuff from the East Coast – not my thing at all – but it makes for some good reading.

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Martin Cizmar
Contact: Martin Cizmar