Part of what has inspired me to start this blog was reading what other people were doing on the web. For instance, a friend from home who writes and plays in the group AM/FM Dreams, Damian Lethbridge, posts a “track of the day” for the St. John’s based publication, The Scope. For anyone looking to keep in touch with the St. John’s music scene, follow Damian’s posts online. Also Annie Warner, a member of the band I’m currently listening to, posted a track a day in an effort to listen to 365 days of songs. Well this is for you Annie, as you’ve inspired me to do the same and I’m more than thrilled to include East of Empire‘s “Into the Elephant” as part of my 365.
I discovered this band through Damian’s Track of the Day featuring EoE’s “Piano Song.” I immediately loved it and, when looking for bands to play with when I returned home to play, I quickly asked this new, young band if they would close the night out for us. I was touring with Pat LePoidevin and we didn’t know what to expect when we saw these fresh faced musicians take the stage. It didn’t take us long before we were tapping our feet along with the tunes and trying to keep our mouths from hanging open. Even as I re-listen to these tracks right now I’m floored by what this group was able to capture on record. It’s a little lo-fi, endlessly catchy and the vocal deliveries and weird arrangements are unique enough that I can dismiss any comparisons. I hope these guys don’t fall into the St. John’s trap of forming a band during college/university for 3 or 4 years before subsequently dis-banding and going separate ways.
This album was recorded as part of the RPM challenge. For anyone interested in it, the RPM is a challenge for anyone to record an album during the month of February. Check the site out as it contains a vast amount of music from all over the world. St. john’s happens to be one of the “hubs” and therefore there happens to be an amazing amount of RPM albums from Newfoundland bands.
“Come Calling” is a nice change of pace after the dancable first five songs. The lyrics can be a little indiscernible, but lead singer Reuben Finkel still has a very unique approach and is still able to pack quite a punch. Annie’s harmonies add a beautiful touch as well.