Orchestral indie rock duo featuring Joe’s Taco Lounge owner Gabriel Leis releases “Old Mill Park” EP and unveils spectacular video focusing on the park’s “majesty of the redwood forests of Northern California, and the feeling of nostalgia for a time that is lost to youth.”
Tidelands is songwriter / guitarist / flugelhorn player Gabriel Leis, co-owner of Joe’s Taco Lounge, and drummer / keyboardist Mie Araki. Courtesy image.
Pass the time away / pass the time that feeds the lost and wandered eye / by the creek we built our boats / yours of leaves and mine was made from dandelion stems and bark / pass the time away / pass the time that feeds the lost and wandered eye / that chance some day when we both fall apart / I’ll meet you back at Old Mill Park
Mill Valley just got a gorgeous new entry into the canon of fantastic songs that pay homage to the beauty around us.
It comes from Tidelands, a duo of multi-instrumentals that play what they call “orchestral indie” rock that “achieves widescreen sonic grandeur,” according to iTunes.
One member of the duo is a familiar face to anyone who enjoys food – namely, the fantastic Mexican fare of 94941 landmark Joe’s Taco Lounge. By day, Gabriel Leis co-owns and runs the restaurant that his father Joe Leis opened in 1992 until his passing in 2003. When he’s not at Joe’s, Leis, a songwriter / guitarist / flugelhorn player, teams with drummer / keyboardist Mie Araki.
While the EP was released earlier this month, the spectacular video for the song “Old Mill Park,” directed by Elliot Jaramillo and shot with a drone camera flying the route from Cascade Falls to Old Mill, hit YouTube on March 19 and has already garnered more than 700 views.
“Before I ever lived in Mill Valley permanently, I used to spend my summers there at my dad’s house on Lovell, so Old Mill Park was just down the street,” Leis says. “I was drawing more on vast and vague feelings of nostalgia and universal longing for a childhood past than any specific memories, but the Old Mill structure definitely is a touchstone for those memories, and I can remember playing around and underneath it in the creek, just like kids still do today. It’s a magical place, so it’s not too hard use it as a symbol for the feeling I was reaching for.”
Tidelands released If…, its debut full-length album, in 2011, and followed it with a another album, We’ve Got a Map, a year later.
Much like those album, Tidelands recorded and mixed the Old Mill Park EP at Bay Area indie rock stalwart John Vanderslice’s Tiny Telephone Recording studios in San Francisco.
The Old Mill Park EP features Vanderslice, along with Bay Area musicians like singer-songwriter Debbie Neigher and Magik*Magik Orchestra, the latter of which serves as Tiny Telephone’s go-to orchestra and has performed with the likes of Death Cab for Cutie, Chicago, Sting, Nick Cave, Third Eye Blind and Weezer.
Listen to and buy Tidelands’ Old Mill Park EP.