As a Gemini, Christopher Harold Wells feels empathy for the situation of others. He takes those emotions and infuses them into his music under the name The Neverlutionaries.
Set for release on February 12, The Neverlutionaries’ self-titled LP shares Wells’ rock ‘n’ roll roots blended with his love of jazz, alternative and shoegaze.
“I’m glad I have a way — especially during this COVID situation — to get something out, instead of sitting around and have everything bottled up,” says Wells, whose birthday is June 12.
“I’m used to traveling and doing a session in New York, and then being in Atlanta and Nashville, North Carolina and then back to San Francisco.”
Wells worked alongside No. 1 Billboard-debuting producer Jaimeson Durr at San Francisco’s Hyde Street Studios and enlisted a collection of session musician friends to help, like Kid Rock guitarist Kenny Olson, Chris McGrew, Ryan Hickey, Nick Baglio and Jonnie Axtell.
“It was such an amazing process to record at Hyde Street,” he says. “Studio C was where the (Grateful) Dead would go. It was their little hideaway spot. Within the Hyde Street studio complex, Green Day, Tupac, when he was with Digital Underground, Kanye, Train, the Dead Kennedys and Santana recorded there.
“Just to be in that kind of energy and then to have recorded this with my friends made it so much better.”
Having originally made his name in North Carolina, Wells has been performing, recording and producing in San Francisco for the last few years. As well as songwriter, Wells divides his time between San Francisco and Nashville.
As a testament to Wells’ versatility and open-mindedness is a resume that includes playing in The All-Time Low Stars with Keys; working with a variety of artists ranging from Lauryn Hill to Bubba Sparxxx; and opening for bands like Metallica, Aquarium Rescue Unit and Def Leppard.
“The longer you write, the more you dial yourself in and hopefully come into what your sound is to be,” says Wells, the son of former Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Harold Wells. “But with my sound, there are so many parts that make it up because I dig a lot of different kinds of music.”
Those “kinds” include the church choirs of his youth, Rush, Tool, Kaskade, The Cure, The Mars Volta and Joy Division. He’s a big fan, however, of Prince and Jimmy Page.
“The whole trick is to put your own spin on musicians like Prince, who can do any genre and own it,” he says. “It didn’t seem like a forced thing.”
As for acts like The Mars Volta and Joy Division, he says, “There’s something about big, distorted chords that move me really deeply. It’s at goosebump level to this day.”
Wells has handled the COVID-19 as well as anybody, but he’s been prolific. However, the song “Everybody’s Sitting Around Losing Their Minds,” which sounds like a COVID-19 song, was written prior to the shutdowns.
“I didn’t want to release that as one of the first singles,” he says. “It’s a rocker, but it would seem like I was taking advantage of an awkward situation.
“I want to be respectful. People are going through a lot right now. It’s nothing that should be toyed with.”