Since the release of his critically lauded debut album, Dead Language, in 2007, k.s. Rhoads has become one of Nashville’ʹs most sought after collaborators. Whether as a string arranger, co‑songwriter, producer, or multi‐‑instrumentalist, he has come to be regarded as one of the most creative minds in all of Music City. For the past few years, when Rhoads wasn’ʹt working on other artist’ʹs projects, he has been meticulously crafting new songs in his pursuit of a bolder, more explosive sound. Now, with his sophomore album due out March 5th, fans will certainly not be disappointed. The Wilderness is a brave exploration of k.s. Rhoads’ rare and expansive musical ideas.
In 2008, Rhoads was asked to be one of the artists, as well as the bandleader, of a highly regarded tour of Nashville musicians called Ten Out of Tenn, and this tour became the subject of a critically acclaimed documentary entitled Any Day Now. Other Ten out of Tenn alumni include Joy Williams of The Civil Wars, Mikky Ekko, Ashley Monroe of The Pistol Annies, Butterfly Boucher and Gabe Dixon, among others.
In summer, 2011, Rhoads was invited to perform with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra at WRLT’s, Live On The Green. In front several thousand people, k.s. Rhoads and The Nashville Symphony Orchestra hammered out over an hour of Rhoads’ʹ music, all of which was composed, written, and arranged for the orchestra by Rhoads himself. It was a first for both he and the orchestra.
For the production on The Wilderness, Rhoads chose to collaborate with Cason Cooley (Matthew Perryman Jones, Derek Webb, Katie Herzig). Though they had known each other for years, this was the first time they joined together on a major project. With Cooley’s subjective ear, Rhoads found the perfect musical sparring partner, and over the course of a year, they finished Rhoads second album.
Refreshingly sincere, ferocious, and imaginative, The Wilderness offers impressionable and uniquely relatable stories about life. Rhoads’ mastery of words along with his instinctive gift of composing confirms his exquisite skills as a writer, arranger and producer. To no surprise, he was recently honored with the ASCAP Foundation’s prestigious 2012 Sammy Cahn Lyricist Award, and was asked to perform in spring 2012 for the much celebrated TEDx talks.
On the eve of the album’s March 5th release, k.s. Rhoads hopes fans and listeners will get to the heart of the album, which he says, “is about the grappling with mankind’ʹs feeling of abandonment in this universe, and the hope that against all odds, we can, and will, be illuminated.”