Home Read Albums Of The Week: The Baseball Project | Grand Salami Time

Albums Of The Week: The Baseball Project | Grand Salami Time

The supergroup of good sports hit a home run with their fourth full-length release.

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Grand Salami Time is the fourth release from the supergroup The Baseball ProjectScott McCaughey of The Minus 5 and Young Fresh Fellows, Steve Wynn of The Dream Syndicate, Peter Buck and Mike Mills of R.E.M. and Linda Pitmon of Filthy Friends.

In 2008 they busted out of the box and easily reached first with Frozen Ropes And Dying Quails. The Baseball Project were on base and immediately posed a threat to go further. In 2011, they moved on to second with some wildness aptly called High And Inside. They were halfway home. Three years later in 2014, the quintet moved on down the line to the aptly titled 3rd, an epic double dip delight of craftsmanship and savvy.

And there they stayed. For nine long years at the hot corner, but now The Baseball Project are finally coming home, scoring big and touching ’em all with their fourth album Grand Salami Time. The scoreboard is lighting up and the fireworks are illuminating the sky.

Speaking of reaching home, this album is a homecoming of sorts, as the band recorded and produced the album with none other than the legendary Mitch Easter. BBP members Buck and Mills’ made their first albums with Mitch back in the early ’80s with a swingin’ little combo called R.E.M. McCaughey and Wynn kept busy themselves during the off-season, busting out new tunes with their respective bands The Minus 5 / Young Fresh Fellows and The Dream Syndicate, while stockpiling a passel of penned poetics about the national pastime, many co-written with Peter.

Mike adds a new classic of his own about doctored baseballs called Stuff. Pitmon, who has been bashing out epic rock platters with Filthy Friends (which also features Alejandro Escovedo, Luke Haines and Buck), is back driving the ship from behind her mighty drum machine.

All in all, a fancy pedigree. But, as Wynn points out, “this is our only band that plays stadiums” — true story as The Baseball Project have performed full sets along with the National Anthem and Take Me Out To The Ball Game at major league parks in Boston, Chicago, Milwaukee, Denver, Minneapolis and Philadelphia, along with minor league and spring training fields. They have also thrown out some exceptional first pitches (nothing but strikes!).

It’s all part of the unusual arc and fun story of the band, whose first gig was an appearance on Late Night With David Letterman, followed by a festival in a medieval Spanish city. For a quintet that have seemingly done everything over the years with their other bands, The Baseball Project always offer new and uncharted experiences.

The album was recorded at Easter’s fabled Fidelitorium Studios in Kernersville, N.C., with the entire band performing live together in the same room, a joyous experience that seemed impossible to imagine only one year before. Mitch adds guitar on a few tracks and the record also features Stephen McCarthy (The Long Ryders) and Steve Berlin (Los Lobos).

This is the home run music fans have been waiting for. Packaging features stories behind the songs from band members, and makes your season. Get out the rye bread and mustard, Grandma: It’s Grand Salami Time!”