Sixty Stories / Painted Thin
Different Places To Sit / A Loveless Kiss CD - Smallman

It’s always fun when you discover a new band. You pop a disc in the stereo, not having the faintest idea what you are about to hear, possibly assuming you aren’t going to like it simply because you have never heard of it, and what comes flying out at you simply knocks you back a step or two. You grab the case, looking at the band name, now wondering instead how you managed to never hear of these guys before. Put simply, Sixty Stories is a female-fronted Canadian indie rock band. Not that gender really matters, but it gives you a better sense of what is going on here. About half of the songs (“Bails,” “Sheila,” “Silence Song,” “In The Clear”) are pop rock of the more punky nature, while the rest (“The Place At The Top of The Stairs,” “Live Up To,” “Meetings”) are a little more laid back but just as catchy. From the computer bleeps to the swirling keyboards to the standard drums, guitar, bass and vocals, every song is warm and inviting in a raw sort of way, kind of like The Weakerthans, but minus any cutesy folk songs tossed into the mix. Painted Thin, on the other hand, is a band that no longer exists. In fact, Paul Furgale was the bassist in Painted Thin and is now the drummer in Sixty Stories. The band’s brand of artsy Canadian punk is represented here by five previously unreleased cuts, playing around a little with rhythms and feedback, offering up a heavier vibe to close out their half of the album. The abrasiveness of “Holiday” quickly tells you the bands have changed, but that abrasiveness remains just as melodic and endearing as the poppiness of Sixty Stories. “T.P.O.D.” and “Kandis’ Song” are real rockers, while “Shelter Worker’s Goodbye” and “Landmine” are a little slower and more accessible. So, whether you’re into head-bobbing indie pop with a slightly punky punch to it, or if you prefer more politically and socially aware art-punk, there is definitely something for you here. A dozen great songs from two great bands. Unfortunately, only one of them will ever be heard from again. (Eddie Fournier)



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