Saturday, April 22, 2006

The Hero Cycle

As I've mentioned many times before, my resolution this year is to get more into the local music scene. So far, I've been excited about what I've heard from Fire the Cannons, The Jazz Guys, Neil Cleary and Kyle the Rider. That trend continued this past week when I saw a blurb in Seven Days about a brand spanking new Burlington band called The Hero Cycle. Casey's description of the band is spot on. So, here it is:

Anyway, there's another new group that I want to tell you about. Burlington's The Hero Cycle is something of an indie-rock big band, with seven members contributing to their multilayered sound. THC (how's that for an abbreviation?) features three guitarists, two keyboardists, a drummer and a bassist. Yet somehow the music never sounds cluttered.

Led by guitarist/vocalist Frank Smecker, the group combines shoegazer haze with yearning vocals and intricate arrangements. It's a bit of a departure for Smecker, who once skinned 'em alive as a member of on-again, off-again metalcore giants Drowningman.
From what I've heard about Drowningman, THC is a completely different direction for Smecker. THC reminds me a lot of Broken Social Scene with it's broad varied textured sounds. In fact, since I downloaded their three songs from their myspace site (which Smecker says will be on the debut EP they are working on), I've been playing them constantly. SOme of my favorite stuff at the moment. The other thing I like about THC is that they list an art designer as a band member. Nice artsy collective touch.

I know it's tough to judge a band from just three "unreleased" tunes but I'm certainly excited to hear more from them. So, add THC to a growing list of solid Burlington indie rock bands.

By the way, THC shares bass player, Shawn Flanigan, with Fire the Cannons. That means Flanigan is going to have a busy night on May 19th when The Hero Cycle will play their debut show at Positive Pie 2 with Fire the Cannons, Carrigan and Sharon Van Etten. I don't know anything about the last two bands but having THC and Fire the Cannons in Montpelier is a fun easy night of good music.

The Hero Cycle | Breathing In
The Hero Cycle | You vs Them
Fire the Cannons | Nowhere Feels Like Home


Actual Al said...

Good shout dude. Enjoyed their stuff and will keep an eye out for them if they ever make it over to the UK.

Anonymous said...

yum! the menu at positive pie looks real good! xxx, KHMatthew

Anonymous said...

love these songs!

Flatlander said...

I'm glad to hear folks are liking them. Good stuff.

Matthew, the food is very good there. If the staff smoke a little less pot, perhaps they'd get the orders right more often but that's my only complaint. I'd say are order is correct only about 50% of the time.

If you guys (Kamikaze Hearts) come back to play in Montpelier, it would be a good place to play. However, you guys got great sound out of Langdon Street so why mess with success.

jds said...

I'm digging them too. If only I didn't have to go out of town that evening. Ugh.

Yeah, Positive Pie is heavy on the VT stereotype. Not the type of place you want to bring your inlaws on April 20th (or 4:20 on any day). But the grub is great.

Anonymous said...

we liked langdon street, but we are always up for trying something new. thanks for the tip! when we get back from tour, i'm going to start thinking about a return trip up north. hope all is well with y'all! xo, Matthew

jds said...

Kamikaze Matthew got the y'all right. So many people butcher it with ya'll and the like. He'll be right at home down in Johnson City, TN.