Brainchild Of Guitarist, Woody Aplanalp, Bonsai Universe Takes You On
A Journey To Another World With Its Psychedelic Electric Sound

San Gabriel, CA August 12th, 2019–Woody Aplanalp has toured
extensively, playing guitar and collaborating with a diverse array of
artists such as Bobby Womack, Lauryn Hill, Nels Cline, Thomas Mapfumo
and more. In 2017 he began working on a project he called Bonsai
Universe and in 2018 he released the first album from that project,
Moonstream. Critics described the debut as “intoxicatingly
different” (Tom Carter, KZSU) and claimed that “(he) effectively
captures your attention by combining different styles into one
instantly delectable mix.” (BabySue Music Review)

This year, in between road gigs, he worked on the Bonsai
Universe upcoming release, Too Many Ghosts. Too Many Ghosts was
produced, engineered and mixed by Aplanalp and mastered by Tony
Austin, who plays drums on the song “It’s A Shame” and is
currently touring with Kamasi Washington. “I went to college with
Tony,” explained Aplanalp. “We’ve probably been in 5 or 6 bands
together.” The same holds true for the rest of guests on the
album—veterans of past musical campaigns that Aplanalp has known for
years, distinctive and notable in their own right. This familiarity
and history lends itself a certain warmth to Aplanalp’s dreamy
ethereal compositions.

The 15-song album kicks off
with the aforementioned “It’s a Shame” which is a nod to Bobby
Womack, “It’s my version of a disappointment blues,” said
Aplanalp. “I used to play Bobby’s first hit song, ‘It’s All
Over’, so this is kind of a twist on that.” “Beepsy” is a
hypnotic electro-pop number that was written for Aplanalp’s cousin,
Beepsy. –

“Beepsy , I thought you’d like to hear a song
just for you | It might not be the best song , but I still hold it
dear “.

The title song, “Too Many Ghosts” is a
dreamy melancholic song lamenting impressions that are left behind,
“In the small hours before the dawn | something still there
something gone | In this old house outside of town, something won’t
stop , hanging around”.

Aplanalp resides in the
foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and there’s a thread of
California running throughout the album. “Walnut Grove” was
written as a nostalgic memory of growing up in Rosemead, CA. An avid
cyclist, “Altadena” was written for his favorite cycling route
that cuts through that city, while “Ode to Ridge Road” is also a
favorite road that cuts across the San Gabriels to Mt. Baldy. And
then there’s the funky tune, “Crumbs” because, as he explains,
“California is perpetually drought ridden…so yeah.”

The album ends with “My Little Corner”, which is a song
from 1960 by Anita Bryant. “However,” he clarifies, “this cover
is closer to the Yo La Tengo version from the 90’s.”

With Too Many Ghosts Aplanalp has struck planetary gold again.
Steve Hochman, music critic for KPCC (NPR-affilliate) said “…as
Bonsai Universe, it seems he’s a lovelorn, instrospective, gentle
spirit with a cosmic gaze.” Aplanalp explains it like this, “With
this project, each song could be its own little universe, or you could
say, A Bonsai Universe.”

Guest Players Noted and Notes:

1.“It’s a
Shame” — Drums-Tony Austin | Bass-Miles Mosley (Kamasi Washington
Band, West Coast Get Down) “Miles and I were in Lauryn Hills band
together and Dakah, The Hip Hop Orchestra” | Keyboards-Jon Neimann
(Gospel Beach, Miranda Lee Richards) “I’ve been working on songs
with Jon on and off for years.”

2. “Beepsy”– Drums
-Justin Smith (Howlin’ Rain and Aplanalp’s bandmate from Old
Californio) | BV- Liela Avila “Liela is from my neighborhood and
I’ve been friends with her dad since she was a kid. He’s on a few
songs, as well.”

3. “Walnut Grove”–Drums-Anthony
Logerfo (Neil Young, Promise of the Real) “Anthony played in my band
many years ago and we’ve done various projects over the years.” |
Bass- John Avila (Oingo Boingo) “John is a neighbor of mine and
we’ve been in several bands together over the years, including Oingo
Boingo Former Members.

4. “Altadena”– Vocals- Gwendolyn
(Composer for Orange is the new Black, Weeds) | Percussion-Brandon Jay
(Composer for Orange is the new Black, Weeds) | Bass-John

5. “Too Many Ghosts”–BV-Dylan McKenzie (Derde
Verde) “Dylan was a guitar student of mine and now he has his own
band.” | Bass-John Avila

6. “Do Something” – All

7. “Crumbs”– Drums-Justin Smith | Keyboards-
Jamison Trotter

8. “Ode to Ridge Road”– Percussion-
Randy Gloss (Hands Ensemble) | Bass-Jason Chesney (Michael Nesmith,
Old Californio “Jason and I have been playing longer than anyone
else that I know. We’ve done many projects together.”

“Spanish Lady”—All Aplanlap

10. “Hey Brown
Eyes”—Drums Bryon Holley | Bass and BV Corey McCormick (Neil
Young, Promise of the Real, Chris Cornell)

11. “Sideways
Summer”—Bass- Juan Perez (Quetzal) “Juan and I have played
together in Quetzal and with Aloe Blacc.”

“Rain”—Drums-Justin Smith | Bass-Jason Chesney

“Long Long Time” – Drums- Bryon Holley | BV- Corey

14. “Drunk Firefly” –Instrumental, All

15. “My Little Corner”—Synthesizer-Robert Hall |
Bass-Jason Chesney | Vocals- Liela Avila


Marc Urselli
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