Wednesday, September 23, 2015

More midwest

Hi lads! Recently you have been told about a blog where me and mates are posting both obscured (but quite impressing!) and not so bands. You have been advised to download stuff via variety of browser plugins though you must feel a bit uncomfortable.

Well, henceforth you are able to download all the albums from the MEGA's folder. And VK blog will be there if you want to preview album before download.

Monday, September 07, 2015

Boys Life – Departures And Landfalls (1996) remastered (2015)

Remastered for vinyl, this iconic release comes in a gatefold LP jacket with a spot UV print and the download includes unreleased live audio.
Topshelf Records

Feeling that dust blew off the sound. Nevertheless, the sound is still the same stuffy and unsettling as the original. Great remaster. Breathe in the scents of the past summer, and move on.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Genius Breed ‎– Days Of October (1999)

EP from Finland (!) band. Sound is an incredible mix of Texas Is The Reason, Sunday's Best, Strictly Ballroom, etc. This unknown band and an unknown album. But I listened it twenty times and I'm shocked to the core. You just must listen it. If anyone has any information about this band, and also has other records and releases, write about it in the comments. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Reupload news

For request Elliott ‎– If They Do EP (1999) was reuploaded.

Pohgoh ‎– All Along (2004)

My favorite release of the summer so far is composed of songs entirely recorded between 1994 and 1998 by a band long since broken up. Sure, it’s strange to enjoy an album by a rather obscure band from the mid-90s so much in 2005, but All Alongshows that Pohgoh deserved more than its share of attention.

I used to hear folks talk about Pohgoh as one of the rare emo bands with a female singer. But when I tracked down the band’s full-length, In Memory of Bab, I didn’t think the band sounded emo as well. Despite the personal and introspective lyrics, Pohgoh’s guitar-driven style was more pop to my ears, more Velocity Girl and Superchunk than Mineral and Sunny Day Real Estate. But this album will let you judge for yourself.

All Along compiles essentially all of Pohgoh’s songs, completely remastered. You get the entire In Memory of Bab full-length, “Friend X” from Deep Elm’s Emo Diaries comp., and songs from 7”s released with Braid, Discount, and others. It’s the band’s entire career, spanning the time Susie Richardson lent her gorgeous vocals and guitar to the band, as well as songs with the band’s original singer, Kobi Finley. You couldn’t ask for a finer retrospective.

The band’s finest work – both in maturity of sound and production values – is undoubtedly the songs from In Memory of Bab. “Tell Me Truly” is a fantastic rocker, taking the sweet Velocity Girl sound up a notch on the rock factor. Blazing guitars mix nicely with Richardson’s sweetly sung vocals on “Tired Ear,” a trademark of the band’s sound. Some songs are sweet, like “Megaphone Mouth” and the truly wonderful “All Along,” and some are fast and loud, like the blazing chorus of “Chapel of Ghouls.”

Some of the non-album tracks are slower, prettier. “Goodnight, Sweetheart” from the split with Braid couples that sweet sound with some amazing guitar work and some of Richardson’s best vocals. “Closer to the Truth” is a catchy early rocker from the band, and though Finley’s voice didn’t quite match the soaring quality of Richardson’s, it mixed with the band’s early style quite well. “Kandy Koated Cisses” is a cute, more poppy song, while “Red Lights Mean Go” is all-out from the beginning, with Richardson lending a bit of attitude to her vocals. And the cool echoey effects to “Look Out” make it another unique approach by this talented band.

I admit it: I love Pohgoh. Richardson’s voice was so perfect for this style of music, I sought out her next project, Maccabees, and highly recommend that band as well. But this was music of a particular period, filled with clever hooks and personal lyrics, impeccably well done and wonderfully remastered. This one is highly recommended.
Jeff Marsh
Delusions of Adequacy

For the most part, female-fronted indie rock bands don't garner the appeal or accolades of their male-fronted counterparts. Bands such as the Rocking Horse Winner and the Anniversary, despite being musically sound, slipped under a lot of people's radar as they were just dismissed as no good, because of having a female singer. Admittedly, Pohgoh is a band that, until All Along found its way to my desk, I knew nothing of. The album is a discography, spanning the 4 years between 1994 and 1998 that they were actually making music. It features Kobi Finley, and Susie Richardson, both of whom had stints singing for the band, and both of whom interpret how the band should sound in a different way. 

Through 19 tracks on All Along, you really get the feel as to just what this band was all about. Making solid indie rock songs, with beautiful female vocals leading the way. The music behind it seems so simple, and even whimsical at times, but don't let the beautiful tones of the guitar fool you, as a lot of these songs are actually fairly complicated. Pohgoh don't care to follow the verse-chorus-verse structure at all times, but there's still some choruses so catchy that just listening will make you feel guilty. For the first 14 songs, Susie Richardson's voice is nothing short of amazing, while spouting clever little lines such as "You won't find me fishing for compliments / because now I'm scared of what to expect." And it's on songs such as "Megaphone Mouth" and "Chapel Of Ghouls" that her angelic voice really takes flight. 

The lyrical matter bases mostly on relationships, though it never comes to the point where it seems annoying or overbearing, a problem many bands have trouble realizing within their own music. It's not sappy, and it's not childish, and that's the reason you'll find that what Richardson is saying can really mean something to you.
I drag my feet and move too slow, I'll never make it home on time / The choice is mine, I'd have to lie but I know what I'd like to do / It'd like to stay right here with you / But something makes me walk away, it'd be so easy to stay / I'm looking at your smiling face, looking as I drive away / Too far to see your shining eyes / I'm going home tonight.
The last four songs, the ones where Kobi Finley sings, from the band's very first recordings, are the album's only sign of faltering. Finely's voice doesn't feel as at home with the music as Richardson's, not in an off-key way necessarily, more in the lack of cohesion with the rest of her bandmates. As far as discographies go, this is a fine one to own, but I can't help feeling the last four tracks hinder more than help. It's nice to see where the band started, but Richardson's inclusion on all the other tracks just makes it that much more apparent how they improved as a band when she took over the singing duties.

Pohgoh ‎– All Along (2004) VBR V0

Pohgoh ‎– In Memory Of Bab (1997)

Pulling influences from the rock of Superchunk and Versus, the pop of Velocity Girl and the vocal beauty of Ida, Pohgoh remains, to this day, the quintessential female-fronted indie-rock band from “Emo’s” hey-day.

February 1994, Kobi, Matt and Brad form Pohgoh, with Keith joining on drums later in the Spring. They’re young, they’re having fun, they do two tours of the Eastern U.S. and release 3 records (all singles). Each set contains great hooks, lots of dancing and plenty of show ending noise. In November 1995, Kobi decides to leave for personal reasons.

January 1996, the boys recruit Susie, from Tampa’s Stitch. They’re still young, they’re still having fun, and they do one six week tour of the Eastern U.S., release 2 singles (one w/ our friends, Braid!), a full length and a song on Volume 1 of the “Emo Diaries” series. Each set contains lots of guitar, more great hooks, and still plenty of show ending noise.

Pohgoh bids farewell in a tear-filled final show on 2/21/98.

Pohgoh play slow- to mid-tempo pop-rock, with an emphasis on sadness that evokes slight emo undertones. The song structures are fairly straightforward verse-chorus-verse, but Susie Richardson's vocals steal the show here. She has an amazing range and a strong grasp of melody that really hold the music together (check out "Superlife," "Stateline," and "Chapel of Ghouls"). The lyrics are the basic bittersweet love song type, sung in a sweet, sincere manner. I would've liked the production on the guitars to be a bit stronger, but I don't have many complaints here. I'd like to point out that the drumming is really solid...there, I did. I'm still puzzled about why I even got this CD, since it's pretty old. 
Plus: doberman pinschers
Minus: now i miss my dog
Summer Salts

I think I'm ready to declare this as my favorite record of the year. I really don't want to end up saying something like "this is sooooo awesome" but I think I will: this is sooooo awesome. Okay, I said it. It must be true. Seriously, this is one emotional and fun album from Tampa Bay's (FL) pop band Pohgoh who take a lesson or two from Velocity Girl and Mineral but I would choose Pohgoh over both those bands - no contest. Singer Susie Richardsons (ex-Stitch) voice climbs into the stratosphere like angels. Her lyrics are personal and introspective and are high on the chill factor (aka goosebump-giving scale).
Jeffrey Howard
Kick Bright Zine

Sunday, May 03, 2015

More midwest

In addition to well-known and significant midwest emo bands were a lot of good and interesting, but of little-known or underrated bands. Me and my friends are posting their music on a public page in a social network VK. On Mondays and Wednesdays - interesting and little-known bands, on Saturdays - significant and midwest emo mastodons (essentially the same as that in this blog). If you want, you can download the audio with plug-ins for your browser (VK Saver, for example).

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Luck Of Aleia ‎– Six Songs (1999)

Luck of Aleia is the heartland-emo band featuring Caulfield Records owner Bernie McGinn -- Six Songs is a thoroughly solid collection of hooky, driving tracks which combine the bombast of emo with a jangling indie-pop influence. The result is well-written enough to please fans on both ends of this spectrum.
Nitsuh Abebe

I had to get this release. Just go to the Caulfield website (link at the bottom in case you don't know it by heart) and go into the jukebox section and listen to the song "Happy Birthday". That's what I've done a few times in the past couple of weeks. Once you've heard it, you'll want to buy this too. 

LOA have the guy who is in charge of the 'field singing, and cool - it's not often you get people who can do 1 job great, let alone 2 or 3. And Bernie not only runs a great record label, but his spot on, noisily sung vocals are a perfect fit for the jumpy indie rock that is present on most of the 6 songs here. 

"Happy Birthday" sounds even better on record than on scratchy real audio. Just listen as the Promise Ring-esque chorus on this one flow out the speakers, and get the lyrics "Of all my bad ideas, this one takes your cake, and throws it in the street". Neato. Melodic and poppy, with touches of Braid and some other bands, I've seen Superchunk mentioned - I don't have much for reference but wouldn't say that's off the mark. They have a similar idea to both bands on what pop should be. And it just so happens to measure up with my thoughts too. 

Most of the songs tend to bounce you a long, blurring the jangly guitars into the more crunchy bits to create a super cool sound, and drive things a long when it gets a bit faster. They do have a couple of slowies too, but they don't spoil things. 

Worth picking up totally, be interesting to see if a future full length can develop the band even more.
Andy Malcolm

This album is quite good and has many original breakdowns, not to mention the good ear for harmonies. However, this is an Indie rock band from the Midwest on a local Midwest label and who should not be on this site for national distribution.
Amazon's Customer Reviews

whilst bumbling around on i noticed that these guys had under 500 listeners, which perplexed me. i never really thought of them being that obscure or unknown, for the simple fact that their album came out on caulfield, and therefore everyone remotely interested in that period of emo should have checked it out by now. i guess that's not the case though. ok, so luck of aleia only ever released this 6 song 10" / cd, and it featured caulfield head honcho bernie mcginn, formerly of sideshow - a band i never really 'got'. this six songer from 1999 or so would have been one of the last true midwestmo releases before that period pretty much shrivelled away. the music is bouncy and kind of poppy, with little mathy inflections not far off the braid path. my favourite song on here remains 'happy birthday', which is super catchy and has a great driving chorus. other bands that will come to mind whilst listening to this are the promise ring and superchunk. each song clocks in around the 4 minute mark or so, but they tend not to outstay their welcome. 

if you are a fan of the midwestmo sound, then you should give this one a listen. it's a shame that this kind of style was pretty much consigned to the musical dustbin for almost a decade, but you can still hear some of the elements that make it such a fun listen in new bands such as everyone everywhere and pswingset.

It's hard to believe how much a band can get across in a half-dozen artifacts of their song writing work. After sweaty practice sessions, conversations hours later over coffee about the recent batch of songs, and then performing the output in front of an audience of onlookers and listeners, this mini-album is the end-product. Distilling the live energy of their high-energy 4/4 metabolism, Luck of Aleia have posted a sensational drawing on the proverbial refrigerator door for all of us to witness. Born of a melodic punk rock lineage, Luck of Aleia have already outwardly extended yearning hands for the kids to join in. Captivating, seductive punk rock for all ages.
Keith York
Mod Magazine

You remember that guy in junior high chorus? Not much of a voice, but it went to his head because he got the lead in Ĺ’Oklahoma' so he formed a garage band with his older cousin or something and kept everybody up nights trying to sound heartfelt? Somebody should have told him he sucked. Otherwise you end up with bands like this one. Six extremely plain songs of love and various higher emotions on a nicely-shaped CD that melts real good in a tire fire, I'll bet.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Sunday's Best ‎– The Californian (2002)

If there is ever some sort of indie rock awards, someone please make sure Sunday's Best vocalist Ed Reyes gets a nomination for best vocals. No doubt it's easy to overlook, but to a large degree Reyes' tone and melody help carry the L.A. quartet on their sophomore LP for Polyvinyl Records. The music onThe Californian is even more stripped down and simplistic than their debut full-length, Poised to Break. Thankfully Reyes has such a heavenly voice, for just about any other vocalist would surely find a way to ruin these pop songs. Sunday's Best has definitely matured, slowing things down and seeming content with good songwriting and hooks galore instead of the dual guitar wankerings and yelling vocals seen on their past works. The story behind the album involves lineup changes, divorce, drug abuse and recovery, and everything that comes along with it. That being said, it's easy to understand that there are a few dark undertones on some of the tunes ("Don't Let It Fade," "The Salt Mines of Santa Monica," etc.). It's all pretty subtle, but The Californian is one of those pleasant indie pop albums that will fly under the radar with many, but surely deserves a listen by all. And although this theory hasn't been tested, The Californian is most likely a great summer driving record, as is typical of the best indie pop albums. While the front of the album seems to be a bit stronger than the latter half, both parts chime in with the acknowledgement of strong music written well and executed with the capability that only comes with great maturity.
Kurt Morris

For those of you quick to jump to conclusions, I'd like to cut you off and mention straightaway that this album isn't even half as emo as the cover art makes it look. The guitars rarely rage, the meters are never odd, and the vocalist never wails like a possum in heat. If I were to label them at all, in fact, I'd just call them a pop band, plain and simple. Popular prefixes like 'power' and 'post' need not apply.

And so it goes that all over The Californian, the second full-length from the L.A.-based four-piece Sunday's Best, the guitars chime melodically, the vocalist never yells at you, and a guy known as James Tweedy (no relation) studiously offers up utilitarian basslines with a minimum of flash. The funny thing about all this is that Sunday's Best used to be totally emo, but somewhere between their debut and this album, they seem to have realized (possibly through their own introspectiveness) that they weren't very good at it and would be better off moving in next door to Sloan and the Posies and honing their songcraft.

Critical flippancy aside, the band has undergone a lot of cataclysmic change in their lives between records, including divorce, exiting members, rehab and rough tours, and these life experiences have lent more authenticity to their music. Vocalist Edward Reyes is suddenly a smooth, capable singer with a bit of 70s AM honey in his voice and it suits him, though sometimes the double tracking that's heaped on feels a little overdone. That's hardly the only cue the guys take from the 70s, though, as the chorused guitars that crop up frequently are quick to remind.

Like most pop bands with guitars, Sunday's Best are at their most affecting when the songs are trimmed of excess fat and drive the melody straight home. Opener "The Try" is nicely arranged, with several contrasting rhythmic feels, each of which appropriately support the lead material they're given. Drummer Thomas Ackerman and co-producer Tony Lash (ex-Heatmiser, drummer for No. 2) keep the sound crisp and clear and are always sure to have Reyes' voice up front and center-- an important move, as his tenor is easily the most distinctive element within the band.

Ian Moreno's lead guitar parts play a nice second fiddle to the vocals throughout the album, never intruding on Reyes' space, but adding a little more interest to the backgrounds. Yet, despite the musical subtleties present, it's a shame that the band hasn't made more attempts to broaden their overall sound, as the sonic uniformity of The Californian begins to wear as it progresses. "If We Had It Made," with its surprising, tasteful incorporation of bells into the arrangement, hints at something more expansive in the band's future.

If Reyes is the band's focal point, it certainly helps that his lyrics (co-written with Ackerman) aren't half bad. The lightly rocking "Our Left Coast Ambitions" is one of the record's best tracks, featuring sarcastic calls of "Hooray for Hollywood!" and a lead guitar part with some unusual volume and crunch, while "Beethoven St." is straightforward and unapologetically nostalgic for the street Reyes grew up on. Part of what makes "Beethoven St." work is that the feeling of nostalgia is conveyed through imagery, rather than through the whiny "I wish things were the way they were"-isms that too many songwriters get bogged down with.

Sunday's Best stretches out the structure of the final song, "Los Feliz Arms," utilizing loud/soft dynamics and some guitar heroics likely left over from their early days, but keeping it reigned in enough that you don't forget it's a pop song. But that, of course, is one of The Californian's primary shortcomings: it's just a bit too polite. I'm not advocating a feedback frenzy or a screaming fit on any of these songs, but the band could stand to be less afraid to let loose and step a bit outside of the ultra-comfortable pop trappings they're now calling home.

Between that and the overall single-hued feel of the album, it's hard to recommend this to just anybody, though fans of guitariffic indie pop should find it pretty easy to swallow. The Californian is a fine, if inessential sophomore effort from a skilled band that could be on the cusp of something great if only they'd let their guard down.
Joe Tangari

After putting out "Poised To Break" a couple years back, it quickly gained Sunday's Best, a relatively unknown band to that point a lot of attention. It landed on tons of year end top ten lists (mine included), and rightfully so. It was a sometimes subtle, though always catchy pop rock record that also fit well into the oh-so-marketable emo category. Then they hit a period of Behind The Music style band killing hardships.

One founding member, and songwriter leaves to join The Jealous Sound. Another gets divorced, and ends up in rehab. What next? Break up, purchase suits, and get real jobs? Go the Jimmy Eat World route, and pump out an ultra marketable, major label cheese bomb? Nope. Instead they regroup, recruit a new member, leave rehab, and record what is easily their best record to date.

"The Californian" is an obvious departure from "Poised To Break", though it is also a bar-raising, career defining sort of departure. The songs are more subtle this time around, though it's just as catchy. It's just that you have to listen to each song a few more times before they're stuck in your head. It's all but impossible to pin any sort of "emo-core" tag on these boys this time around. Maybe that was the intention, but I would guess they don't really care either way. The songs are generally pretty slow, but they're roll down the windows and enjoy the sunny day slow. The highlights here are a bit less obvious right off the bat, though there are a number of them. The first tracks to pop out are the unforgettable near-ballad "Beethoven St.", and slightly more rocking "Our Left Coast Ambitions". But "The Salt Mines Of Santa Monica" is also not far behind. The whole record though is well thought out as a whole, with each song in just the right spot on the record. So there it is. I'm fucking gushing, but I can't help it. This record has been a bit of an addiction for me since I got it weeks ago.

This will floor the Matador Records, big collared shirt crowd, and the younger pop rock crowd all at the same time... Outstanding.
Stuart Anderson
Kaffeine Buzz

Sunday's Best's Poised To Break was a solid debut, displaying a band that could write melodic indie rock songs that went from straight ahead power-pop to an emo-esque style. On The Californian, however, they find themselves and gel as a band, making their sophomore offering the complete package, an album that sounds like an album from start to finish (rather than a collection of songs, which Poised To Break sometimes felt like).

Another thing that makes The Californian a milestone for Sunday's Best is that it doesn't wear its influences on its sleeve.Poised To Break was quite catchy, but seemed to take the easy way out and find quick relief in the bands that Sunday's Best was trying to emulate. The Californian takes the high road and comes together quite nicely.

A lot more focused and methodical, The Californian doesn't leave the rock out, however it is not a power-pop record by any stretch of the imagination, and it doesn't even hint at emo.

"The Try" sounds pretty. The borderline falsetto vocals of Edward Reyes makes the song sound approachable and heartfelt, without making it sappy or whiny. All the while, Sunday's Best does what they do best, offering up rhythm section-driven rock music propelled by the guitars, which go from sparkling and sweet to noisy and distorted.

"Don't Let It Fade" simmers with its rich, melodic structure, dripping like rain on a windowsill after a hard day's rain in the sun. Reyes' voice sounds like it is reminiscing about a girl he used to know, one he thought he could help, tried to, but always wished he could do more. As he sings about this person in his life, you start to form an image in your mind of a girl you used to know. One that fits the same description he is painting for us, and you can't help but cry a tear or two for that special someone.

On "The Salt Mines of Santa Monica" Sunday's Best throws caution to the wind, cranks up their amps, and goes for it, ripping out a rocker that blazes the trail with loud guitars and a speedy tempo. Somehow, they manage, amongst the guitars buzzing, to keep things melodic and explosive, hooking you and reeling you in for a well-composed rocker that feels quite comfortable in any environment.

Following it up with "If We Had It Made," an easy-going, gentle number that just sits back and allows you a little time to think, the quartet sums up what they're all about. Having fun, rocking out, and still serving up music that will get stuck in your head as you sing along and get motivated to search inside yourself and think about life.

"The Salt Mines of Santa Monica" and "If We Had It Made" fit so beautifully next to each other. They are Sunday's Best's two extremes, a rocker and a song that is gentle enough to put you into a slumber and have peaceful thoughts.

"Our Left Coast Ambitions" is another buzzing rocker, while "Without Meaning" counters its rock-ness. Throughout the album the band is able to mold these two songs styles into one, letting go of it for a bit to lean one way over the other, before coming back to the center and doing what The Californian will surely be known for. This is a well-thought collection of strong, lingering songs that won't leave your mind any time soon after you hear them.
Alex Steininger
In Music We Trust

Sunday's Best ‎– Poised To Break (2000)

Poised To Break--a CD title displaying the haughtiness of a band, or a humorous jab at the state of the Indie Rock scene? A fickle scene where many have the sounds and smarts to make it with the masses, but instead we get hammered with watered down diet grunge from too many bands that sound too much alike. In all actuality, never has a CD title fit the sound contained within so well. The only other title that would've worked would be "10 Kick Ass Songs You Should Spend Your Milk Money On."

You know how sometimes a song can awaken a long forgotten memory or make you reminisce about parts of your life? Like a half forgotten childhood summer. That's this entire CD. Tracks like "Bruise-blue" and "White, Picket Fences" brings an emotional upheaval of memories that you can't pin down. The lyrics, music and vocals all blend together in a perfect pop smoothie. You can hear possible musical influences throughout the CD as well. "Saccharine" and "Winter Owned" gives you a harder Knapsack type quality in places, but "Where Is Pearl Harbor Day" demonstrates a pure pop innocence that is lacking from many of the bands out there now. Then we have the bonus untitled instrumental track at the end of the CD which is purely an audio delight. These guys can meld with their instruments in a state of perfection to create a flow of sound not to be rivaled. Watch out Pele! Being an instrumental, that is the only tune on the CD that doesn't demonstrate Sunday's ability to give each song lyrical progression--like a story unfolding, instead of writing a catchy song just to have a catchy song. You become part of the story behind each track and from there you're lost in the CD until it comes to what will seem like an abrupt end. Not because it doesn't flow well, but just for the plain and simple fact that you want more and more!

All in all, this CD is an amazing mixture of early Sunny Day Real Estate, the new pop sense of Promise Ring and bits and pieces of Built To Spill. But the best part is that they can take those sounds, add their own style and flavor to come up with a CD that once you listen to all the way through will stamp you for life. But just remember that if you look like a mess, you must be a mess.
Jeff Turner
Hybrid Music Reviews

Like a number of the bands on Polyvinyl Records, Sunday's Best play a type of indie pop/rock with prevalent punk roots and elements of emocore, particularly the naked emotion and tough-guy angst. And like the majority of those peers, they generally make a pretty competent racket. Unfortunately,Poised to Break ultimately isn't very interesting in any particular way. At this late stage in the game, it's difficult to bring anything new to the pop-punk template, considering literally hundreds of bands long ago strip-mined that particular vein until it was bled dry. With that particular cross to bear, Sunday's Best nevertheless try to climb the mountain once again. The results are expectedly tepid for most of the album, and surprisingly the band doesn't even manage to generate a whole lot of sonic excitement to cover for the lack of interesting ideas. They do manage a few fairly nice moments -- the new-wave guitars of "Indian Summer" and the solid "In Beats Like Trains" -- that you wish they had used as centerpieces from which to create their own personal niche, but on the whole they simply have a go at making the type of album that countless indie pop-punk bands made throughout the 1990s, and many of them much more successfully. The band neither writes particularly catchy hooks nor explores any of the potentially intriguing individualities within their chosen sound, and it leaves the music flat and lacking any sort of intensity. Labelmates Aloha and Pele have both released gorgeous albums full of exploratory music by throwing out the formula entirely and exploring styles such as jazz and progressive rock, but within a rock structure. Sunday's Best, however, doesn't seem to have the capacity to build upon their influences in any meaningful way, nor do they show a desire to. Hardcore fans of indie rock will inevitably find something they like on Poised to Break, but for the listener who needs more than a retread of already threadbare ground, it is best bypassed, perhaps for one of their more adventurous labelmates.
Stanton Swihart

Crashing in with a raging pop hook that makes me think of the Police, but more energetic, and even in the songs clean sound you get a pure raw edge. The guitar drives and the vocals go straight through you, leaving the hook in your throat until you're singing for days. When the mood slides down to a more steady breath pace, the vocals move up into the atmosphere, and float, achingly. There's a cohesive element in the songs, one that ties the album together through the perfect stars of sometimes pop punk and sometimes almost 80's rock glitters of inspiration. The lyrics make you feel, either in that heartbreak I can relate way, or with just a simple smile. Indie hearts here, beating with sounds that match your soul, and as long as the music plays... this summer will never end. Anthems for right now, my room fills with guitar, and sometimes it gets so sad you could weep, sometimes... it's like the perfect Sunday, and you just grin like the music.
Marcel Feldmar

This is the type of record that your girlfriend will steal within one week of your purchasing it, and you probably won't even care. Sunday's Best sounds a tad too earnest and sensitive for those who like their rock on the abrasive side. Sure, there are parts here that rock, but the overriding attributes are the sugary melodies and pristine harmonies. The band's production techniques have improved immensely from its last seven-inch, but the vocals have jumped way too high in the mix. Each song has a distinctly sing-songy chorus, but unlike most emo/pop punk bands the singer can actually sing.

"The Hardest Part" is a high-energy pogo rocker in the vein of early Superchunk, but the band owes a royalty check to Sting for copping the verse melody from "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic." Seriously, listen to them both back to back. It's uncanny. Sunday's Best then tip sits hat to Radiohead on "Bruise-Blue." The vocals mimic Thom Yorke's Bends-era falsetto, and the chiming guitars recall Radiohead's quieter moments. It's obvious that the band is taking itself seriously enough to warrant such a sensitive disposition, which is unfortunate because it's almost always bad news when any band gets too self-aware.

"Saccharine" has an infectious chorus that's hard to dismiss. It's another Superchunk-sounding indie punk anthem: "We want it and we want it now." The dual guitars thrust the chorus along. Borrowed or not the band has an ear for melody. As mushy as "Indian Summer" is it's definitely got the hooks to make the ladies swoon. Sunday's Best is not far from Third Eye Blind territory. I'm not sure if that's a concern of the band's or not. It may very well want to be on MTV's 120 Minutes. Who knows? The lightly rocking "When Is Pearl Harbor Day?" is the type of song any band with a hint of testosterone would bury deep in the back yard and never speak of again, but Sunday's Best trots it our proudly- simpering lyrics and all.

The 'emo' tag may seem harsh, but Sunday's Best truly pushes the limits of sappiness just over half way through its debut full-length. "In Beats Like Trains" the band takes some sort of underdog-feminist stance, and it comes off not preachy but forced: "The girl you used to tease is rolling up her sleeves/she finds everything she needs in the pages of the books she reads." Does this band think its pop punk's answer to Belle And Sebastian? Any chance of redemption is lost on "Looks Like A Mess." It surges with resignation and these somewhat embarrassing lines: "Drank it up slowly as I looked at the only people in the room/'it's ok to admit that you had been laughed at' said Mr. Deacon Blues/then some fool laughed and 'high fived' the bar-back."

Sunday's Best is clearly targeting the sensitive crowd with these mawkish ballads disguised as pop punk rockers. Turning up the guitars in the chorus doesn't save a song from being a ballad. Just when you're ready to write the band off as another overly sentimental punk band a song like "Winter-Owned" hits you with its undeniably catchy vocals and sharp guitars. Whoops, "Congratulations" brings it right back down to reality. Cheesy sentimentality wins after all. What a shame.
Eric G.
Drawer b

From the somewhat unnerving homage to The Police’s “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” on “The Hardest Part” to the vocals which sound like a watered-down mix of Thom Yorke from Radiohead and Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters, everything about Sunday’s Best evokes other, more interesting bands. Everything on Poised to Break is completely derivative. There are no original ideas anywhere.

It is almost difficult to say that Sunday’s Best or Poised to Break is bad, because this music is designed to be utterly non-offensive. They place their poignant pauses just where you’d expect them to fall, and the vocals are just earnest enough to convey emotions without committing to them. Guitar chord progressions are generic and played with neither inadequate nor extraordinary skill. Even the hidden jam session at the end is in just the right place and lasts just long enough. All of this would almost be admirable if it actually seemed like thought was put into it. Instead, Sunday’s Best just seems to be on autopilot, playing by the textbook rules for a band of four white boys.

While it would’ve been nice if the lyrics somehow saved Sunday’s Best, revealing some profound and intelligent awareness of the human condition, this is, unsurprisingly, is not the case. They’re either whiny or forgettable, but usually both. “Some things are lost and some things, I guess, get found,” they sing obviously on “When Is Pearl Harbor Day.” Even when they touch on subjects like domestic abuse, like in “Indian Summer” (“How did you get that bruise on your shoulder? / You are so Sisyphus / Just pushing on your boulder”), they do little more than just touch on the subject. There’s no insight or understanding about any of the situations they sing about.

Poised to Break is fortunately easy to disregard. It’s almost harder to actually pay attention to it. While this would otherwise be a criticism of a band, it’s probably the most redeeming quality of Sunday’s Best. You can effortlessly ignore them. Find a CD by one of the bands that Sunday’s Best is unmistakably descended from and listen to that instead.
Eden Miller

Sunday's Best delivers sharp, melodic power-pop-emo with intriguing lyrics you actually want to listen to. The songs are hooky, stylish, and full of bright beats that get you moving while the guitars will burn inside you. A bit too pop for emo, but a bit too emo to be just pop, they combine the two styles and brand it with their own party-boy, heavy drinker rock touch. Songs about girls, drinking, and partying may seem shallow, but they add substance and solid backing to the widely covered topics. But, even if you're too snobbish for the lyrics, the melody will get you every time.
Alex Steininger
In Music We Trust

Sunday's Best ‎– Where You Are Now (1999)

Sunday's Best display punk roots on their debut EP Where Are You Now, but they mix it up with some slow, spacey passages and dense arrangements.
Steve Huey

This band is highly underrated. I think they have 2 CDs out now and they both ROCK! If you like indie/emo rock this is a must have. they arent very hard, they have a nice sound that will touch your heart in the deepest way. Where you are now is an album for that special someone or for just you to think about the past, present, future, or pretty much anything. it will make you sad, happy, and satisfied all at once.
Amazon's Customers Reviews

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Well, hello to everyone. I want to apologize, but at the moment  
I don't have enough free time to blog.  
Be patient, the new albums will be here. 
I wish you all the best. 
Stay tuned!