Muscle Shoals Gives Birth to the BoomBox Sound


Nobody snuffed the Muscle Shoals candle – it just keeps getting brighter.

Once again, the otherwise understated and isolated town in Alabama finds itself in the limelight. Recognized for inspiring legendary recordings from the likes of Aretha Franklin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, The Rolling Stones and Duane Allman, Muscle Shoals has played host to some of the most creative music in popular culture. Reports have recently surfaced in Rolling Stone Magazine that the platinum selling artists the Black Keys have recorded their forthcoming album in the area, leaving no doubt that a musical revival is imminent, and the locally born electronic duo BoomBox is leading the charge.

“I do believe that music is genetic—it’s a family thing. Whatever was magical about Muscle Shoals is still there.” Dan Auerbach, Black Keys– Paste Magazine

BoomBox was born in Muscle Shoals, AL. Not just figuratively, but literally. The dynamic duo grew up just a few short blocks from the famous “Muscle Shoals Sound Studio” where legend tells the most famous recordings in history have been inspired. As luck would have it, the two met in 2004 during a recording session, and haven’t looked back since. Since their short time together, BoomBox has become one of a few acts to come out of the area including Drive-By Truckers that are selling out venues coast to coast. (Wikipedia, 2009)

Featuring Producer/Engineer Russ Randolph and Producer/Vocalist/Guitarist Zion Rock Godchaux, BoomBox draws their inspiration from the roots of the area including elements of Motown, Folk and Rock and infuses it with modern elements of down tempo and funky house. Add in a top layer of soothing guitar and vocals with their signature psychedelia inspired poetry and the result is like nothing else on the music scene today. The concoction pays homage to the past while incorporating an infectious electronic sound that has young fans turning out to their shows in drones.

BoomBox will be releasing their sophomore album, downriverelectric, in early 2010. The album deliberately weaves a variety of samples into a musical landscape filled with soaring highs and soul shuttering low bass.

The backbone of the album was recorded using natural elements, drawing inspirations from the rhythm of the Tennessee River as well as snippets and samples of voices, the thumping of rocks as bass, and the shutter of the wheels on the road as they toured the country. At the same rate, downriverelectric also captures the musical memoirs of its hometown community in a new light. With the use of modern technology, the project skillfully drives the sounds of the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s into a dance frenzy of modern flavors. While the album took longer than expected, the final product foretells yet another groundbreaking release from within the Muscle Shoals community, worth recognition.

What’s yet to come from the Muscle Shoals music scene is hard to tell, but one thing is for certain, with acts like BoomBox infusing the rich lore of the area into their current sound, history is guaranteed to repeat itself.