MARCH-APRIL 2002 Demos Of The Weeks -
Genes, Landy, The Sound Platform

Demo Of The Week for 15th April, 2002
The Genes

The Genes are four Queensland blokes. They sent us a demo cd of 17 tracks, which I revolted against at first, inwardly refusing to listen to it all, but then...well, I listened to it a couple of times, admittedly while cooking dinner.
At first, I didn't really know why I liked it. Was it the vocals? Definitely - they have a relaxed, intimate quality, with really delicate phrasing. They sound like they're coming out of a person whom I think I'd like, which, on the most fundamental level, could be what we look for in vocals. Then I realised that their plain, simple electric guitar and drum sounds were satisfying my present (ever-present) hunger for classic old-time rock 'n' roll. I think I might even be coming around to blues, after a decade of dismissing it as mannish self-indulgence. Then, there's the songs, which are subtle (i.e. not trumpeting out their hooks, so at first you don't notice them, then on 3rd listen you think - I know this song!) and well-crafted, arranged just the way I like them (i.e. stopping before I start to twiddle my thumbs). I can almost imagine that they were a power pop band who have stripped their music back to its roots over the years...well, I might be wrong about the nature of their origins, but they do have the confident, laid-back originality of a band who has evolved. Maybe their je-ne-sais-quoi has something to do with the fact that they are not pushing too hard - so the listener is drawn in. Oh, and on their bio, I thought they wrote "You may find it a bit of a groover," which mystified me for a while...can people really dance to this? Then I reread it - "a bit of a grower" - now I understand! A grower, it sure is. --LL


Our Demo Of The Week for 1st April, 2002 is:

We know nothing about Landy except what you see in the picture. We have either lost their bio, or else they never sent one. I have a feeling that they are not from Australia...yes, we've just had it confirmed, they're from Spain.

Tracks one and three are perfectly alright - sweet primitive pop, with a rock option, too, but we are giving Demo Of The Week to track 2, which we think is fascinating, in essence not quite like anything, except maybe a vision in someone's mind. It is one of those story songs (what it's about, I wouldn't dare to guess), that by the end has transformed into something completely different to what it started as. It opens with thumping, lurching bar-room piano, like two cowboys walking away from each other in a duel, with the (male) voice low-ish, thin. Then the voice starts getting higher and more emotional, and miraculously, stronger, until it reaches the unreachable - Robin Gibb's heart-piercing warble. About halfway through, the piano loses dominance, overtaken by guitars. Then other voices start to come in, until the lead vocalist seems to be having an insistent conversation with someone slightly off-mike. I can make out a couple of complete sentences, "If only I knew why I feel so empty, I just need more of what I see," and the enigmatic, "Hey dude, I'm starved, give me another!"--LL


Our Demo Of The Week for 4th March, 2002 is:
The Sound Platform

The Sound Platform are four short-haired people (see pic) from Melbourne, who recorded this from 1998-2000. I think their cd 'the mission of a sad man is glorious' has been sitting in the stack for ages.
sound platform

This cd is very diverse, which always pleases us demo-listeners (as do short songs, in general, simply because we are listening to the cds in a hurry). There are flutes, strings, brass, keyboards, seedy rock guitars, loops, birds and more. A single song dives from bouncy '80s pop to distorty rock angst (track 2), or from pretty minimalism, with the could-it-be-slower? drum track to a climax that somehow gives us the impression of a full orchestra belting out a tune (track 1). These short-haired people know no limits! And it's not just in the production that the diversity lies. These songs are packed with ideas...we're always yearning for songs that tell a story, not necessarily a someone-got-their-heart-broken story (though we like them, too) but a story can be something tiny, non-lyrical, even just a change of mood in a song, a development of some kind. The Sound Platform give us lots of satisfying sounds, but they also seem to have ideas behind them, and just as we're getting used to something, they snatch it away and shove another at us. Like the "quirky little tune" in the middle of the cd, a real gem, especially hidden here, where its cuteness is tempered by the rather dark songs on either side. Maybe it could be more organised, but we love its lively haphazardness.


Previous Demo Of The Weeks
JANUARY 2002 Temporal Lobe, Hero Puppy, The Carousel, Randy Lee Majors, Sharmelle Peterson
DECEMBER 2001 Sugarchild, The Rectifiers
NOVEMBER 2001 The Drones, The Savages, Sideshow, Arbuckle
OCTOBER 2001 Halfway, Earth To Nigel, Closure, A Cat Called Monty