Now added to 183 college radio stations.
Could This Be the New Sound?
By Lee Fisher (Copyright 2003)
For years now, it's felt like rock is waiting for something to happen. And for years, it's felt like record companies have been trying to make that something happen. Garage Rock, New Metal, Rap/Rock, etc. have all been hailed as the next big thing, a new revolution like the one we got out of Seattle in the Nineties. But unlike the Kurt Cobain-led revolt that destroyed hair metal, these new movements have felt a little manufactured and haven't had that much staying power.
I may have stumbled across a band that can change things once again, in of all places, Killen, Alabama. Never heard of it? You will soon. On their 12-song debut, the holleycarbines play their brand of what they call "emo-Americana guitar rock" (think Tom Petty meets the All-American Rejects) as if their lives depended on it. The earnestness inherent in their music draws you in like much of today's manufactured pop never could. The holleycarbines "mean it man."
Though he won't say much about it, rumor has it the lead singer went through a pretty tough break up during the writing/recording of the CD. And it shows. The lyrical content of this album is alarmingly painful. But the music-a driving mix of electric and acoustic guitars, drums, and bass-is the kind of music you'll want to blast out of your car windows screaming down the freeway on a summer day.
You see, despite its hatred of commercial/manufactured music, the holleycarbines have a pop sensibility of their own. All of their songs have melodies that will stick in your head for days. "I can't stand songs without hooks," says lead singer/rhythm guitarist Matthew Pettus. "But that doesn't mean you can't say something honest within that hook."
The fourth track on the CD, a song called "Winona Ryder," is a prime example of this. It's incredibly catchy and quite funny, but if you listen closely, there's something deeper going on there as well: "It's about how stupid it is to expect a real girl (even an actress) to live up to a character on a movie screen," says Matt. "And I'm not talking about looks ... I'm talking about that image of the perfect girl with the perfect heart ..."
Pretty deep, huh? And all the songs on the CD are like that, which makes me think these guys may have something special. The holleycarbines, Glide Down Over Earth, is an album you owe it to yourself to listen to.
From King Kudzu Magazine
holleycarbines: Radio-Friendly Unit Shifters
by Coosa Red
Glide Down Over Earth, the DIY debut release from the Killen, Alabama band the holleycarbines, is a radio friendly, twang-pop mÉlange based largely on relationship songs and nostalgia. The day is coming when people will mention this self-described "emo Americana" band in the same breath as Counting Crows and the Wallflowers.
I listened to this record for a week solid, all the while thinking, "is this as good as I think it is?" Today I realized that another week had passed and I'm still listening. I caught myself whistling the tune to "Winona Ryder" in the parking lot. H--- yes, it's that good.
Things I like about the holleycarbines: They wrote a song about Winona Ryder; capable pop song-smithing; Jay Skipworth's alt.country guitar wail; Matthew Pettus's proto-punk vocal warble; Greg Woods's (drums) and Shannon Partrick's (bass) buoyant rhythms; homegrown talent that's real.
Things about the holleycarbines that confuse me: They wrote a song entitled "Electrolux;" Where is Killen? What is "emo Americana?" How does one pronounce holleycarbines? What the ---- is a holleycarbine? What if a band with the alt.country street cred of the Old 97s fused with a pop-chart sherpa like Matchbox 20? What if Tom Petty wrote songs for Built To Spill? What if I ran out of adequate comparisons?
At the end of the record, you'll be satisfied. The next four times you hear it, it will sound like you've never heard it before. Glide Down Over Earth is like that; it sneaks up on you, tells you a joke, and disappears. You'll laugh because it was good, but later wonder if you really got it, and you'll listen to it again.
See www.holleycabrines.com for mp3s, tour dates, and the ever-present merch page. Citizens of Fun-gomery's music rooms: the holleycarbines are currently booking summer and fall shows, so if you like the tunes, ask your favorite bar to book them now while you can still afford them. At the time of publication, they have one Montgomery date set: Faulkner University in September.
Volume 3, Issue 2