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MKE Music Premiere: Father Sky sets up a search for meaning on ‘where to begin?’

Father Sky

Every week, Milwaukee Music Premiere connects the city’s artists with our listening audience. If you’re an artist with a track you’d like us to debut exclusively on Radio Milwaukee, head over to our Music Submission page to learn how.

It’s said that once you release a piece of art to the world, its meaning is no longer for you to decide. Some artists buck against that approach to creation while others embrace it. It appears Milwaukee artist Father Sky — aka Anthony Deutsch — falls into the latter camp.

His single “where to begin?” gets the premiere treatment today, and in describing the track he told us it “came to me when I was feeling very uncertain. That has been a major theme in my life. I suspect many can relate. Listen to the words and see what it pulls out of you.”

I won’t share the results of my particular sonic Rorschach test, but I will tell you this is one of the more musically dense premieres we’ve had in some time. It starts on the relatively spare side, with Deutsch’s vocals doing a very passable Matthew E. White impression that ventures toward Peter Gabriel at times. He calls his Father Sky project “poetic in nature,” and the lyrics bend that way:

Fading leaves, drafty windows 
Screams in silence, do they know?
Hanging on the wall, inside it 
Shadows fall in light despite it.

Can you tell me where?
Can you tell me where to begin?
Can you tell me where?
Can you tell me where to begin?

The song seems to add instrumental layers as it goes along to reach that density mentioned earlier, a feat made more impressive by the fact that Deutsch performed every part while lyrically plumbing the depths of his inner self. As if that undertaking wasn't enough of a challenge, the universe threw in some uncooperative technology that nearly prevented the track from existing at all.

“I started recording the song in my bedroom studio in Riverwest around 2021. When I was saving the session, I accidentally deleted the original,” Deutsch recalled. “By the time I came back to recording, I had moved to Viroqua, and the process took until just a few weeks ago, when I was inspired by some local friends to finish the track. Good things happen slowly, and all things come in their own time.”

Hit the “Listen” button at the top of the page to enjoy this bit of goodness, which gets its proper release March 19. You’ll also likely hear it at Father Sky’s upcoming show at the Cooperage next Friday, March 22, with support from bass player John Christensen, percussionist Jon “Verzhun” Harris and DJ Jordan “Madhatter” Lee.