the b4tf story
B4tF is a progressive/alternative rock band from San Antonio, Texas.
The music represents strong elements of prog as well as melodic passages that hope to maintain accessibility.
Drawing on a range of long time influence and admiration of bands such as Rush, Yes, Genesis, Tears for Fears, Gabriel, The Fixx, Ultravox and of course The Beatles. The first objective in the music is to create an emotional connection through melody and the lyrics.
The project began in 2014 when Patric found his many songs unfinished and at a stand still. The songs written and produced, but stuck. The missing element seemed to be a vocal that matched the level of the songwriting and production.
At the same time, Kenny was writing and experiencing the opposite, having a great ability to establish melody through his many years as a writer and vocalist. But not being able to hit his target as a producer.
Although Patric and Kenny had been friends and musical comrades since the 80's, they had never worked on a serious project together.
At a chance meeting in a coffee shop, Kenny and Patric comparing projects, Kenny just stated:
"I just wish I could do something where I just showed up and sang."
Realizing that a great vocal was the missing element to Patric's music, and knowing that he admired Kenny's vocal style, talent and work..the invite was issued to have Kenny sing on the stagnated music.
The combination of Patrics songs/writing/production and Kenny's vocals/melodic and lyrical input created a new and inspiring energy for both.
They were sure that this combination was destined when they first met 30 years ago..that this project started with that friendship...and was literally--Built for the Future. Thus...the moniker.
CHASING LIGHT was released to strong reviews in 2015. The album contained cross-over prog that focused on the best songwriting they could deliver. The album had flavors of Yes(Rabin yrs), Rush(mid period), Tears for Fears and later Genesis. Some Beatles 'peppered' in on as well.
CHASING LIGHT sold in over 12 countries around the world, with really kind and generous reaction from fans from so many different places. The album was 'pirated' in Russia! The single WALLS was featured in PROG MAGAZINE #72.
There were many pivotal supporters that helped propel the album with reviews and radio play, including live radio performances and interviews. A fortunate turn for the band.
The album was a reflection of an emotional reality that Patric was experiencing, and that added to the potency of the lyrical connection.
This album featured guest guitar players who added some dynamic playing and touches. Chris Benjamin played the stunningly melodic lead on BURNING DAYLIGHT, and David Peña blistered his way through the frenetic lead in RUNNING MAN. Both guitarists were featured as guests throughout the album. But it was David's contribution to the feel of the songs that would see him take on a much more prominent role on the follow up album.
The production process on the album had Patric writing most of the material, sending tracks to Kenny, sometimes with a suggested vocal, sometimes with an empty slate for Kenny to create his own vocal melodies. Kenny would add layers of vocal tracks and send back to Patric. In some cases, such as the firey SPEED OF THE CLIMB, the song would be Kenny's from his long past of writing with his band Felt Nun, and Patric would interpret the song and produce it in the B4tF style.
B4tF played shows through 2016, including a prog-fest in Austin Texas--Voyagerfest. In order to perform they formed a live unit of friends and talented musicians who were amazing as they learned the recorded material and brought it 'to life' on stage.
Pete Fithian/keyboards has been a fixture in the project and the live crew. A prog-loving stalwart who comes across similarly to Tony Banks, a quick learner, flashy when needed, and able to handle the orchestrations of the album with his multi-keyboard set up. Pete was an
obvious choice when Patric and Kenny watched his video playing Firth of the Fifth on piano.
Drums have been handled by Raul Garcia and now Lalo Hererra. Both among the best in San Antonio. Both of these outstanding stick-men are great at creative texturing, odd-time signatures and learning quickly. Lalo also handles backing vocals and visual and audio syncing on the live stage.
Britt Mitchell and now Joe Danz have had the guitar duties, both bringing great experience and talent to the songs. Two premium stage performers who added a strong feel to the shows. The songs, have multi-layers of guitars that have to be represented live, and both of these guys brought the ear and hands to execute as well as add a powerful energy to the live versions of the music.
BRAVE NEW WORLD is the new album. This album is the next chapter in the metaphorical story that began with CHASING LIGHT.
The album was driven by a desire by Kenny and Patric to be a bit more progressive and a shade darker. Inspired by the emotion that the continuation of the personally driven lyrics would demonstrate, finding a 'new life' in a 'new world'.
Upward of 25 songs were written for this album, the first wave of songs were far in to development when two songs changed the course and feel of the direction. Once CITY OF THE SUN and LINE OF SIGHT surfaced, the songs that were already in the works, were put aside and more were written with those two songs as the template for the mood/feel of the album. More sci-fi, more organic, with nods to electronics and drum loops, just a strong turn from the first batch of songs written.
In service of this direction, and in order to truly take full advantage of his talents, David was invited to be a full member on this album. David was 'cut loose' to add anything that he was inspired to add. The results were very inspiring, as David added an atmosphere that created ambience, mood and emotion to the songs.
Some of the songs that were put aside from the first group of material, were finished and released as free singles, PLANET became a video. Themes of the three singles still tie in to the story and feel of the new album.
These singles featured just Patric and Kenny, with Kenny showing his skill as the main guitarist.
2020 there are plans to play festivals, and record a live show in Texas. And then, album 3.