Friday, February 21, 2014

FDF Volume 3 Issue 330: Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque

Album - Bandwagonesque
Artist – Teenage Fanclub
Key Players – Norman Blake – vocals, guitar. Gerard Love – vocals, bass.  Raymond McGinley – vocals, guitar.  Brendan O'Hare – drums.

Produced By – Don Flemming, Paul Chisholm and Teenage Fanclub
Release Date – November 4, 1991

Overview -  This is the third full length album from Scottish band “Teenage Fanclub”.  The band has remained largely unchained since its inception and three of the members rotate signing the the songs.  The band would have mild success here in the US, and this album actually beat out Nirvana's “Nevermind” as album of the year according to Spin magazine.

FDF Comments (aka the songs) – 12 tracks and 42 minutes of music kick off with one of the singles released to US radio, "The Concept".  It has a mellow, yet wonderful power pop feel to it.  The harmonies are really nice and the ring of the guitar is only off set by the distorted riffs coming out of the chorus.  The extended jam at the end of the track is also unique in that you'd think the band would sort of be in and out of the track to keep it catchy and to the point.  Well played.    After the lengthy intro song the band performs “Satan”, which is not even a 1:30 long, it's a wall of noisy guitar chords and banging drums and then it takes off to a fun jam that might have worked out in a full song, but it does the trick.   Sets it up nicer for the track “December”, which brings the ringing guitars back and nice solid bass work from Love.  The harmonies are great once more and the band seems in no rush pulling you in.  On “What You Do To Me” Blake takes the lead vocal and it has every essence of that power pop song, see for yourself (or listen to it right here)  “I Don't Know” has the buzzy guitar intro and McGinley takes the turn on vocals.  Love's bass work is up in the mix and you can hear he wants to add more than the “bottom” with the swooping lines.  The guitars again are terrific with their sound and presence in the track.  Perhaps the most well known track off the record comes in “Star Sign” which did crack the top 5 on the modern rock charts in America.  The song has a slow build (perfect for dj's to talk up) as one guitar attacks, the other swirls.  The bass works its way in there too but its O'Hare that kicks it in to overdrive after the one minute mark.  The band has great 3 part harmonies again and O'Hare gives the drum kit a great workout.  “Metal Baby” has a heavy bass presence while “Pet Rock” lets the guitars take lead on bubbly track, that transitions to horns and guitar battles.  Going a little more on the vocal focus you get “Sidewinder”, still the elements of the bands sound are all there, just feels a bit more laid back but the band will always give you that guitar, and it comes again.  Love gets the focus again with his bass on “Alcoholiday” while Blake takes the lead vocals and the guitars chug along.  The drums don't push too hard, but the vocals and bass really shine.  Love takes the lead vocals on “Guiding Star”, a song that takes its time building up there are breathy vocal deliveries which add to its vibe, and nothing seems to want to step on the vocals.  “Is This Music?” is the final track on the record and the buzzy guitars are back with the rolling drum line that folds in to the dual guitars and the bass rolls under all that. The riffs are repeated over and over and it remains a vocal free track.

Where are they now?  - As noted the band has remained together.  Blake, Love and McGinley have all stayed with the band and have done a few side projects.  O'Hare left the band after the follow up to this record (Thirteen) due to musical differences.

FDF Overall Take -  This is power pop at its best.  If you like guitars and layers of vocals, this is for you.  Run..don't walk for this.

Links -  find out more..follow and buy!

Official Site


Disclaimer – I am just a music fan.  Feel free to comment about something that may be written incorrectly about the band/members etc.  I strive to have a fun and enjoyable site.  This site used to post mp3s but ran in to many issues.  The audio clips provided are usually from YouTube.  No copy write infringement is intended.  Please alert me if something should be pulled.  Finally, support the artist featured, or your favorite artist by purchasing their music, seeing their shows if possible and saying hi.  They need your support.


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