File under Rock. Tom Dyer and The True Olympians will release their debut album 12 New Recordings on August 17. To warm you up they are releasing a video for “The Ballad of Donald John Trump” today. The album features all-new material written by Dyer and recorded by the band in the spring of 2018, ranging from the super-pop of “The Grey” to the brilliantly obtuse sludge of “In The Light.” Some of the songs are pointed like “Hegemony,” “The Ballad of Donald John Trump” and the not-quite sacrilegious “Wibblin’ For Jesus.” (Hey – it’s just the true facts, ma’am.) Some are vague and some are wistful. Probably none of them fall in the “pretty” category. The majority of the band’s efforts could easily be clumped into the “cruddy rock” category. The True Olympians are too old to care what anyone thinks about their music. They just do what they gonna do.
The True Olympians are Tom Dyer, vocals and guitar, Joe Cason, keyboards and vocals, Gene Tveden, bass and vocals, and Tom Shoblom, drums and percussion with no vocals at all. As a band, their beginnings go back to high school in Olympia, Washington, where Tom D and Gene played in teen bands together. After high school, Dyer left town and eventually started Green Monkey Records, releasing his own solo and band albums, while Gene stayed in Olympia and played with a number of bands. He was a union man. Joe and Tom S are also natives who have played in pile of Oly bands and who currently play around town when it suites them in The Crescents. This band got its start when Dyer moved back to Olympia a couple years ago and reconnected with Gene. Scott Vanderpool of the Green Pajamas ( a Greener) introduced Tom to Tom and away they went. At the practice pad, there was a pile of keyboard stuff in the corner – Tom asked Tom “who?” and Joe was in.
The True Olympians are not a particularly ambitious bunch. Their first masterpiece is done and they plan to play at least one show this year. Perhaps more, but they ain’t no spring chickens and don’t like to haul gear that much, so we shall see. Regarding the “True Olympian” business, while it is true they all are from Olympia, they are neither nativists nor exclusionary. They understand rather that True Olympianism is a state of pure existence available to any being on this round planet, with enough focus, work and clarity. You too can be a True Olympian. And they like to do the rock. Yes they do.
The band released a digital single (now a video) from the album in May, “The Ballad of Donald John Trump,” Dyer’s second editorial commentary about Mr. Trump. The hope was to get it out before Trump could do anymore dumb/evil stuff that required writing new verses. Dyer’s previous single and video, Trump-ville, was released one year ago in June of 2017. Mr. Dyer is hopeful it will not be necessary to write a third song on this unpleasant topic next year.
The True Olympians made their debut last December with the wonderful and secular “Christmas In Olympia/Christmas Is Love” single.
Despite living in the Land of Trump, The True Olympians work hard to maintain an optimistic vision of the future.
Tom Dyer – Vocals & Guitar
Joe Cason – Organ, Piano & Vocals
Gene Tveden – Bass & Vocals
Tom Shoblom – Drums & Percussion