listen now Spoke Too Loud Same Ol Bend
Take a listen to “Spoke Too Loud,” the title track to Sheila Sondergard’s most recent CD, and if you don’t think it’s one of the grooviest songs you’ve ever heard…then you need groovy lessons. The verses offer a jazzy/Krieger-esque guitar sound before jumping into a stellar indie-pop chorus. Throw in some syncopated latin style riddims, a buttery bass line to hold it all together and top it off with sassy vocals from Miss Sheila and you’ve got it…grooviness times ten. On the flip side, “Same Ol Bend” is awash with indie attitude. Sparkly guitars give way to an unbridled edginess and siren like vocals.
artist:Treading Lemmings | genre: alternative, rock, brit-pop | label: unsigned | album: Cliff Notes [itunes link=”http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/all-at-sea/id395957999?uo=4″ title=”Get it at iTunes!”]
Here’s what I know…Quinn (vox), Joe Szadkowski (drums), Marc Roulier (bass), Andrew “Andj” Stainer (guitar) and Ricky Hunt (guitar), collectively known as Treading Lemmings, are passionate about their music. They believe in it and, after listening to their most recent full-length studio offering entitled Cliff Notes…so do I. Nearly a year and half ago, the Lemmings set out to write, record and produce a solid pop/alt-rock album. They have succeeded. But…let’s back up just a tad shall we?
The Froglix Faithful were first introduced to the Lemmings shortly after our initial launch back in the summer of 2009. It was then, on one fateful Friday evening in July, I made the trek “into town” to check them out live. About halfway through the show, Quinn hands me two (2) things. A Treading Lemmings t-shirt (still got it…still where it) AND a 4-song EP. I stayed for another set before jumping back in the car for the long journey back to my humble abode (aka Froglix World Headquarters) in Wild Wonderful West Virginia. The first thing I did, after strapping on the seatbelt of course, was pop the disc into the player and commenced with the listening. I was impressed. My initial review touted their music as having a “sound that is creative, energetic and, best of all, pleasantly dissimilar to the mindless droves trying to become the next big emo-punk band” and I still believe that…even more so now having heard their latest album in it’s entirety.
Having followed this band for sometime, I’m impressed with how their sound has matured over the years and can very confidently say that Cliff Notesis their best work yet. Quinn’s solid vocal performance surrounds creative lyrics immersed in melodic guitars and strong bass lines anchored by a definitive alt-rock cadence. As for my favourite tracks, aside from those currently in rotation, the lively pace of “A Roar From Boring Alice” really jumps out to me right away as does the moodiness/melancholy of “Trial of the Century” and “How Green Was My Envy?” Regarding the latter, any song with a well placed eBow guitar sound is hard not too like!
Wanna rock Lemmings style? Get the Cliff Notes and study up!
I’ve known you and loved you for almost seven years, which makes this letter very difficult to write. Things have always been great between us. We met when you released your debut, Effloresce. It was one of the best, if not the best, albums of the year and, overnight, you became one of my favorite bands. Effloresce was a staggering blend of power and grace, sour and sweet, frenzy and calm. We spent day after day together and when you released a follow-up EP, Music for Nurses, it was like everything fell into place for us. You were awesome, you made me happy, you were unique and indispensable, we both knew it, and the road ahead for us was clear and sunny.
Albums two and three, Everyone Into Position and Frames, respectively, did nothing to dampen my enthusiasm. You broadened your sound to include more slower, deliberate songs (songs like “Music For A Nurse,” “The Frame” and “Savant” are three of your greatest) that emphasized atmosphere over thunder, yet still brought a steady, yet understated power. I kept listening and waiting for you to return to America after seeing you here in 2004.
Now you’ve issued album number four, Self Preserved While The Bodies Float Up. And that’s why I’m writing to you, today. You see, this is tough to say, I doubted you. I listened for two days on repeat and came away disappointed. Yes, I said disappointed. I wondered what happened to you, why things seemed so…not good. It was strange to see someone I thought I knew well come up so short. More out of shock than anything else, I kept listening.
Then, late last week, I had THE moment – suddenly, the new album clicked. When I realized its greatness, from the ferocity of “Build Us A Rocket Then…” and “It’s My Tail And I’ll Chase It If I Want To,” to the majesty of “Oscar Acceptance Speech” and “Pine,” I also realized I’d been wrong to judge you so quickly. Everything I’ve always loved about you is still there and there are new parts to you that I’m digging, too. And while it’s amazing to feel this way, it’s also a bit of a drag, because I should have known better than to think you’d lost it. You’ve always been ridiculously good, always. It took me a bit longer with the new one, but I ended up in the same place I always do with you – in awe and wishing mightily that you’d come back and tour the US.
Until then, know that I remain a dedicated fan. I hope you’ll forgive me. The new album is sick, sick, sick. Still friends?