SPRINGHOUSE From Here To OK (Self released)

After 15 years, this 90s shoe gaze band returns with a new album. This time around the effects pedals have been left at home and in their place the melodic quotient has been amped up. From Here To Okay will be released in October in a limited edition (550 copies) CD and free internet download (Radiohead style – i.e. pay what you wish).

Springhouse consists of Mitch Friedland (guitars, vocals, keyboards), Larry Heinemann (bass, guitar, pedal steel) and Big Takeover editor (and a big writing influence on yours truly) Jack Rabid (drums, vocals) and From Here To Okay was recorded by the trio over a ten (!) year period and yes, it’s definitely worth the wait!

In fact, it’s probably one of the better song collections I’ve heard this year. It’s sharp, intelligent, eclectic pop-rock created by people deeply steeped in rock history. Sure, there may be certain “spot-the-influence” elements in much of the music here. But that’s what makes it so fun.

And this is most evident in the Zombies-Pink Floyd channeling opener Passion – the slide guitar break is spine-chilling. Conceptually, the song speaks to the art of music creation on how “Passion creates a song”. Does, in this instance. 

Moving Van is refreshing jangle-pop that references the Who by way of Guided by Voices and might be something criminally left off Matthew Sweet’s magnum opus, Girlfriend. (Listen)

No More Yesterdays is mature folk-rock number that might have originated from the 80s British post-punk scene e.g. Josef K, Orange Juice, Aztec Camera etc.

Never Impossible is fashioned in the Nick Drake style – Pink Moon being the obvious influence. Whilst Mercedes Marxist is a Kinks-Move-Syd Barrett 60s jaunty nugget which thoroughly succeeds.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not dismissing From Here To OK as being derivative – some of my favorite albums indulge in what Elvis Costello called “creative plagiarism” (with tongue firmly in cheek) and isn’t what the best POP music has ever done? 

From Here To OK will definitely be one of Power of Pop’s albums of the year and if that’s not a recommendation….

Stay tuned for more information on how you can get hold of From Here To OK. Check out Springhouse’s Myspace page.

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