Citing musical influences such as Trail of Dead, Jawbreaker, Grandaddy, and Doves, Russian Teammate’s members Jared Bertram (guitar/vox), Grant Frampton (guitar/vox), Chris Graves (drums) and Brendan Moerman (bass/vox/keys) deliver a white-knuckle wind-up of band—smashing through vitriolic choruses that can collapse into moments of quiet introspection and lilting instrumental breaks.
It was these qualities that impressed jaded ears at Russian Teammate’s 2003 live debut, opening for Scottish outfit Idlewild. The band have since kept busy refining their live sound in support of national acts such as The Sleepy Jackson, Blueline Medic, Gelbison, Gersey, Screamfeeder and Bluebottle Kiss.
Following this live success Russian Teammate are set to release their debut EP Songs About Leaving. It’s a self-explanatory title for a complex yet cohesive set of songs inspired by feelings of indecision and finding flawed expectation at every turn.
Recorded over 14 days with producer / engineer team Darren Thompson & Anj Malavazos (Blueline medic, Thinktank, Edison) the Teammate were able to level a more textured approach to the their skewed pop format. The spare use of Reverse guitar, ebow, cello, keys, distorted piano along with a host of ideas allowed the songs to take on a greater life.
Opening Songs….. is the ardent guitar work & heartfelt lyrics of the single, Chasing Aeroplanes, you get the feeling when Bertram sings ‘”what did I do this for?” it’s more than a question. Down in Retail, could well be the anthem for anyone who has had to work ‘behind the counter / counting the hours’. Whilst Dead Fashion is a manic trip down the dark road of date rape - an ominous bassline warns of the calm before a storm of jagged guitar textures and raw vocals that tangibly render anger and violence. From the acoustic closer of daffodils to the accelerated frustration of Night I Stole the Sun, Songs about Leaving is ambitious.
What you will hear loud and clear on Songs About Leaving is the promise—of hope, and of more honest, inspired songs to follow, delivered with passion and intensity. Russian Teammate are set maintain their reputation for paradox with plans for more musical experimentation in the future while remaining true to their legacy of mid-90s suburban guitar tangle.