The Bella Portal is the brainchild and vision of Los Angeles-based musician and songwriter, Chas. “Chip” Moreland. “Post Modern Man,” the band’s debut record on JamCat Records, immortalizes Moreland’s “coming out.”
“I’m a closet yacht rocker and a sucker for that West Coast 70’s sound” says Moreland, who was a founding member and one of the driving forces behind Warner Bros’ enigmatic post-progressive rock band, Altered State. The Bella Portal is a marked departure from Moreland’s Altered State days, and more reminiscent of 70’s studio titans, Steely Dan.
TBP was formed shortly after Moreland’s twin daughters were born. Moreland, who is married to singer songwriter and Blue Élan artist, Cindy Alexander, began to get restless, musically speaking that is. “I’d been working behind the scenes for most of my career since Altered State. Between various collaborations, supporting Cindy’s career, and touring off and on in later years with Dread Zeppelin, I felt it was time to do “me,” to finally come clean musically and put something out there solely reflective of who I am as an artist.”
While the influences of Fagen and Becker are clearly prominent, TBP’s musical style has also drawn comparisons to writers Difford and Tilbrook (Squeeze), Brian Wilson (Beach Boys) and Joe Jackson, to name a few.
In TBC, Moreland moves from behind the kit to handle most of the keys and the lead vocals, while Edwards shares studio duties on bass, drums and background vocals. Like the Dan, the band is replete with various studio assassins to round out the offering. The result is a listening experience with less saccharin, a few more calories, and a touch more complexity to give the listener something the ear can chew on and the mind can devour. “Post Modern Man” was released on December 6, 2019 and can be ordered here.