Here Are the Facts You Requested — Felt
(Elevator Pop HAT2-007, 2003, CD)
Here Are the Facts You Requested — Testing Ground – Live in Spain 2004
((Not on label) no#, 2005, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01
Somewhere back in the late 90s, after seeing them open for the Mike Keneally Band, we reviewed this San Jose band’s earlier release, Shocks and Struts, which proved them to be a talented and original “indie” oriented outfit with a fresh outlook and interesting sound. Six years and a couple studio releases later, Felt is a confident step forward, finding the band forging their own individual style, now more idiosyncratic than ever. The basic instrumentation features guitars, drums, electronics, bass, cello, and keyboards, with guests providing turntables, banjo, pedal steel, theremin, and trumpet. Vocals (both male and female) are sung by all band members and guests too, with different singers alternating the lead and harmony parts, track depending, in sort of a loosely synced Grateful Dead-ish sort of style. The varied voices end up giving the material added variety, as the quartet plies their quirky melodic and lyrical vision and eclectic stylistic tendencies, which seemingly draw influence from just about anything and everything within reach. There are no spotlight hogs in the band; everybody pretty much does their part to support the overall effort, giving the material a very even-handed approach.
While this writer can recommend Felt without reservation, the same cannot be said for the bootleggy Testing Ground; the band plays a respectable set, drawing from Shocks and Struts, Felt, and perhaps some newer songs as well, though the shabby sound quality makes the disc nearly intolerable. Stick with Felt and you can’t go wrong.
Related artist(s): Here Are the Facts You Requested
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more