Fields of Industry began in 1999 as a bedroom recording project of Joshua Barton, distributing cassettes to friends and playing in coffee shops and open mics around Jackson, Michigan. After relocating to Ann Arbor, Barton’s songwriting quickly outgrew the confines of the solo performance, leading him to put together a full band lineup in late 2001 including strings and horns.
Through 2002 and 2003, Barton recorded Fields of Industry’s first release, a self-titled album. The album’s home-recorded richness and folk and shoegaze influences earned the band a performance at the Cornerstone Festival’s New Band Showcase in the summer of 2003, for which a new lineup was formed, including Jeremy Siegrist (Psalters, Illalogical Spoon), and Eric Gallippo (Man At Arms). This lineup played shows throughout Michigan until early 2004.
In 2005, Barton and Gallippo began to perform as a duo, employing the sparse sound of two electric guitars and Barton’s voice. They recorded and self-released the Dogs EP early that summer. They also recorded several songs for a project called The Others Album, which was not released.
In 2006, Barton and Gallippo invited friends Joel Schrauben (Bear Mountain Picnic), Graham Mason and Tristan Dreisbach to join the band. With the addition of bass, casio keys, and percussion, the lineup continued the minimal sound that Barton and Gallippo had established as a duo. This lineup performed in Mid-Michigan throughout that year and recorded the band’s first album outside of the home-recording setting. The warm and unassuming Two Dogs, A Television was released in 2008 to an enthusiastic reception. The album was released digitally through Cerberus Records and as a CD through the band’s own imprint, Arts vs Entertainment.
Barton, Gallippo and Schrauben served as the core of the band through several lineup changes and through new experiments in live and recorded sound, informed in part by side projects conducted under the Arts vs Entertainment moniker. In 2009, Jacob Walbridge joined on drums and Joel Skene on keys and guitar. With this new lineup the band created a fuller sound for 2010’s Trouble House, exploring a darker kind of rock ‘n’ roll along with the reverb-washed sounds of previous recordings. Recorded with Brandon Wiard at Pretty Suite Recording, Trouble House features contributions from Mark Wallace (Black Jake & The Carnies) and Damon Tuntunjian (The Swirlies) among others.
Schrauben departed in 2010 to be replaced on bass by Ed Golembiewski. The band will be performing throughout Michigan and the Midwest in the summer and fall of 2010.