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From Horror Punk, Death Rock to Autumnal Sadness and Perfumed Apparitions

Candles in the Night

HARVEST RAIN, as an idea, began in early 1995. Jason and Jamey Thompkins were already involved in Myrtle Beach's club scene of playing old-school punk. Amongst this neo-wave of "new punk" the band that would eventually be known as THE HUMANOIDS ( formed under the name of FIELDS OF FICTION. Completely inspired by The Misfits, early Christian Death, Killing Joke, The Cramps, TSOL and other bands of what has come to be called "Death Rock"/ "Horror Punk" the young men found their own unique sound. The band was Jason and Jamey Thompkins(in the early days), Rusty Hewitt played drums, Brad Sheets always played lead guitar and wrote most of the melodies, Jerry Stevens played guitar, Todd S. played bass. The music (can be heard on Myspace) was a unique style considering these boys mostly played your basic 8 verse 4 chorus hardcore punk rock/hardcore in the beginning. The vocals were always angst ridden, psychotic, romantic and hallucinatory in nature. By the time they recorded an albums worth of songs in MYRTLE BEACH and COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA the sound was best described as a mix between The Misfits "Hybrid Moments", Christian Death's "Romeo's Distress" and The Dazzling Killmen. Harmonic back vocals, distortion with melody and beauty, throbbing bass riffs, the music had a rather "beauty and romance mixed with psychosis" sound.
One year after the recording Jason bought a 4-track and began recording his sad acoustic melodies from the songs he had begun to write in 1993-1995. It was the song "Gown" that gave Jason the name HARVEST RAIN. From the chorus of the song: "In this season of this harvest rain" and "Our fields are soaked with harvest rain" came the name of the new project. The name stuck. It was Autumnal, it was rainy and it best summed up the type of melodies that Jason was creating and the depression and other personal activities going on in real life. A lifelong love affair with the Season known as Autumn and a love of thunderstorms, ghosts, old antiques and rainy evenings washed in candlelight was how HARVEST RAIN came into this world. The very first cassette recording (SEEK THE FALLEN LEAF) came from the best songs pulled from those 4-track recordings. Songs like Windstorm, White Sky Black Sky showed the acoustic "rainy, haunting" songs while songs like "The Ballad of my Frown" were percussion based songs. "The Legend of Nightfall" and "A Winter Flower" were Funeral organ dirges with spoken words over the music. While this album has never been officially released it is a "mark" in the very first "breath" of HARVEST RAIN. The sound is a typical 4-track sound, but the "spirit and essence is there". What came next would define HARVEST RAIN and put the wheels in motion.
Camping out in graveyards, drug experimentation, the occult sciences and the love of the unknown mixed with roaming the autumnal nights defined what lead up to "Evening and Devotion" in 1997. From this album came the tracks "The Sleepy Ol' Man" which appeared on the Official HARVEST RAIN Debut Album A FROST COMES WITH THE WIND, "Evening and Devotion" the song, "Blessed Frost" and so many more. Whilst Jason, Jamey and Chris Mehl were writing new material some new faces came into the Harvest Rain Family. A re-union with old friend Scott Christophe Moses and a meeting with Russian born Alexander Cross, Harvest Rain became a very spiritual-experimental band. These two new faces added their talents and own unique auras to the new album "Evening and Devotion" (now released as "Songs from Evening"). This was a structured "acoustic guitars, haunting keyboards, prominent bass, experimentation" album and sound and not to mention the purchase of the Roland VS-880 Studio that would eventually record every HARVEST RAIN album and define it's "Aura", it's unique personal sound. All subsequent albums released on Haunted Showers Music such as A SOUTHERN CROSS REFLECTION (1999), COMMUNION WITH A MORNING STAR (2000), CAIN RIVER, CAIN RIVER II - GENTILE PEASANTRY, CAIN RIVER III - THE SERPENT'S SPRING SONG, JASON THOMPKINS - "THE CLOVEN SHOVEL" E.P., JASON THOMPKINS - "FOUNTAIN OF EVENING FLOWERS" would be recorded at home, in the bedroom, etc.. All of these numerous albums and songs: most are still unheard and unreleased while others made their way to OFFICIAL releases including A FROST COMES WITH THE WIND, NIGHT CHORUS, SONGS FROM EVENING, NIGHT'S GLOW, EVENING AND DEVOTION 7 ", BLOOD HYMNS and the recent THE LAND OF TEARS IS SO MYSTERIOUS.

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Jason Thompkins with The Humanoids