First Trees is the third album of Homemade Empire – the moniker of Bart de Kroon. Compared to its predecessors, the mesmerizing ‘A Brilliant Window Niche’ (2010) and ‘Defenestration’ (2012), this new record ventures into undiscovered sonic territories. Recorded partly with Bram Nigten, drummer from noisenik oufit WOLVON, ‘First Trees’ boasts noisy passages that suddenly erupt from the otherwise tranquil music. Other contributors include Pien Feith, Annelotte de Graaf (Amber Arcades) and long standing accomplice Ellen Evers (The Puddle Parade).
The majority of these songs were conceived during a Homemade Empire-tour across the Pacific Northwest – Vancouver, Seattle, Anacortes, Portland-, something that resonates in the sound and lyrics on the album. De Kroon is a solitary musician who doesn’t swim with the tides, but slowly builds a personal body of recordings on the fundament of his past musical lives; in postrock (We vs. Death) and folkpop (Great Lake Swimmers).