In a sense, American songwriter Dylan Sneed has been working on his latest album, TEXODUS, his entire life. In 2008, this Austin, Texas native left his home state for good, trekking across the country to the small, charming town of Hartsville, South Carolina. In the years to come, he would travel more and finish writing this album that so closely mirrors his artistic journey.
The songs of Texodus are personal and intimate, yet they explore universal themes. The title track, which opens the album, describes a restless soul racing down a dark highway, resisting the temptation to settle for the status quo. “The Garden,” the next track, laments the ever-changing seasons of life. In “Midnight Promenade,” Dylan depicts a sleepless night where doubt and hope struggle in the heart of a man. Texodus cuts a wide emotional swath, and songs like “Selfish Boy,” “Love You Like I Do,” and “Climb This Wall” playfully ruminate on being in love, or just on the cusp of it. The thesis of the record, “All Around Me,” proclaims the ubiquitous nature of true friends, faith, and home. “Under The Sheets,” a lullaby for dreamers young and old, brings the record to a close.
Texodus was a grassroots effort through and through. Dylan’s fans funded the production of the album through a campaign on Kickstarter.com. They even provided support for an international radio promotion and European tour through a second Kickstarter campaign. Dylan achieved all of this success without the aid of a record label. Even the recording process itself was unconventional and homegrown. Dylan, along with producer Judd Bolger (bass, keyboards, vocals, guitars), Jeff Rogers (drums, vocals), Haley Shaw (vocals), Nathan Fox-Helser (violin), and photographer Wade Griffith met in a friend’s century-old farmhouse deep in the lowcountry of South Carolina. They tracked the album in five days in their makeshift studio. On certain tracks, you can hear creaking boards, crickets, and even a two by four in place of a snare drum. Acclaimed Americana songwriter Jonathan Byrd mixed the album.
Long before writing and recording Texodus, Dylan Sneed grew up in the rich cultural climate of Austin. After a short-lived stint in Corporate America, he began to hit the road, discovering his taste for the touring life. After relocating to Hartsville, he continued to tour across the U.S. and into Europe, while sowing the spirit of the Live Music Capital of the World into his new homebase. When not hard at work on his own career, he spends time developing concert opportunities for his fellow artists through his promotion company, Artsville. Texodus is a picture of a man in process; a portrait of an artist becoming.