Soundgarden Bassist Ben Shepherd Preps Solo Album, Shares New Song ‘Baron Robber’
Ben Shepherd, the bassist and one of the songwriters for Seattle icons Soundgarden, is prepping his solo debut. It’s called ‘In Deep Owl’ and it drops on Aug. 27. Shepherd is now sharing the first taste of the album in the form of the razor sharp and riffy track ‘Baron Robber.’
Shepherd, born Hunter Benedict Shepherd, is going by his initials HBS for this project. The album was written over a period of several years, beginning in 2009. It was recorded in Seattle, in an industrial area which may or may not have exerted influence on his sonic output.
The bassist initially conceived the project as a voice paired with an acoustic guitar, but it took shape differently when a pair of percussive Matts — Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron and ex-Pearl Jam skinsman Matt Chamberlain — agreed to participate. Their presence helped push the album in another direction and things evolved to become louder and louder. Clearly, these rhythm specialists didn’t fight the way the songs were forming.
‘Baron Robber,’ which actually features drummer Joseph Braley behind the kit, certainly channels the familiar guitar tension and fuzz that is often present in his main band’s songs. It’s buzzy and only slightly psychedelic, with some palpable grit. There’s no polish and because of that, the song exudes back to basics energy. It will leave you wanting to hear more from the record.
This one is best absorbed when the knobs are cranked to 11. Who cares if you wake the neighbors?
Listen to HBS’ ‘Baron Robber’