There have always been plenty of awakenings as to just how insipid the music scene in the Spokane-area is and has always been. It is a very rare occasion that musical talent flows through our city. As a rule, they usually flow around our blue-collar hell, avoiding it like an impassible whitewater rapid, thus making it even more difficult for any real musical talent to spawn from here.
With the release of three new compact discs by Spokane-area bands I was pleasantly surprised to find that there is some mediocre musical creativity floating around.
Suffice to say that I will not be adding any of these CDs to my stack of well-listened musical pleasures, but instead choosing to give them a proper home on the I-might-listen-to-you-someday rack.
The three CDs, Shadows by Sweet Fancy Moses, Black Sun Rising by The Bone Daddies, and a self titled CD by Jupiter Effect are all locally recorded by a Spokane-based record company called College Road Records.
The record company, unlike most small-time record companies that require the band to do all the recording and manufacturing, actually works with the bands to record and manufacture CDs. They have three successful recordings with other bands, including one with The Bone Daddies.
The Bone Daddies new CD, Black Sun Rising, is, for lack of a better word, OK. I did not find it to be particularly fascinating or musically diverse.
However, the lead vocalist has a bewitching voice, as depicted in some of the slower songs on this CD, like “The Artist” and “This Time.”
The Bone Daddies signature sound is the good ol’ blues fused with rock, as evident in the title track, “Black Sun Rising.” They do the blues thing pretty well.
The self-entitled CD Jupiter Effect, a band formed last year from the parts of two area bands, Longview and Old Tale, is the first. They have played at Mootsy’s and the former Fort Spokane Brewery a time or two in the last six months.
Their first CD actually has some musical promise. They can get funky. I was actually starting to dig on the bass lines, like in the song Maceo. I believe it begins with series of the same groovy chords played by the illustrious Maceo Parker from his Life on Planet Groove. I could be wrong. But I liked it anyway.
I found the music of Jupiter Effect to be a creative infusion of all kinds of music, from alternative rock, acid jazz and disco.
The song “Discology” strongly reflects the disco influence. I really liked the 60-second of jam in the song “Density” in the fourth and 12th tracks. There are no words; just instruments and a funky spaced-out noise.
This was a relief, because after awhile I got sick of the same voice singing in the same drab tone in every single song. It kind of made them all run together.
Another band in the lineup of releases, Sweet Fancy Moses, has been around the Inland Northwest for awhile. During 1999 the band toured nationally playing over 180 shows.
The band took the entire year 2000 to write and record their new CD entitled Shadows. Moses’ sound reminds me a lot of the sounds of Rob Thomas and Matchbox 20.
Songs like “Kentucky Girl” and “Yesterday’s Blues” were real whiny, pondering all the real original thoughts spoken in lyrics. You know, like the girl, the road, life. Don’t get me wrong, these guys can play, but I just don’t dig their sound.
If you don’t trust my word, and would like to see these three great Spokanite troupes play in the flesh, show up at the Bayou Brewing Co. Friday night (Jan. 26) and kick back with a libation or two (or three) and see for yourself. College Road Records, Rock 94 ½ and The Local Planet are sponsoring a “triple” CD release concert.
If for no other reason, go because it is something to do and you had planned to sit on your couch watching your roommate do Yoga, or some similarly freaky situation.
The show starts at 9 p.m.; tickets are $5 at the door. Beware, you must be 21 or older.