Demo 98

Sarah Shannon

Snappy Little Numbers/Minty Fresh Records, 2023

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


I used to have a borderline unhealthy interest in early ’90s music from the Washington D.C. area—which means this recording by a supergroup of members of some very important bands (to me, anyway) might have arrived 25 years after it was recorded, but you certainly won't hear me complain about it.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Sarah Shannon, who fronted Velocity Girl, spearheaded this project soon after her band's demise, recruiting Adam Wade (Jawbox, Shudder To Think, Jealous Sound, Film School) and Geoff Turner (Gray Matter, Three), plus others for six songs that sure do deserve this proper release.

“Wheel In A Wheel” gets the listen off to a loud, buzzing start, where Wade's thumping drums and Turner's thick bass complement Shannon's fuzzed out guitar and layered vocals. The lone cover, Richard Thompson's “I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight,” follows with the folk tune being turned into a more post-punk fueled display that welcomes Charles Bennington's animated saxophone.

“Marvel” and “I Don't Want To See The Light” land in the middle, where the former is a scrappy, pop flavored two-and-a-half minutes, the latter burns slow before segueing into a punchy, power-pop climate. Close to the end, the dreamy “Learn To Ride” radiates warm guitar and pretty singing amid the emotive delivery, and the jangly “Gone” finishes with William Whistler's whistling talents for the infectious and bouncy, upbeat exit.

Limited to just 300 copies on vinyl, this is a must if Velocity Girl or any of the bands the players have been involved in interest you, or if you adore pop moments packed into post-punk/indie-rock ideas. Though most sounds in the area of punk from this part of the world are associated with Dischord Records, these tracks suit a more Simple Machines-ish roster, right alongside Tsunami.

Rating: A-

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© 2024 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Snappy Little Numbers/Minty Fresh Records, and is used for informational purposes only.