Sixty Stories / Painted Thin

Sixty Stories / Painted Thin

Different Places to Sit / A Loveless Kiss

Smallman

A split CD of sorts that combines four Painted Thin-tracks from 1997 with seven new songs from Sixty Stories, released as a set now, I assume, simply because Paul Furgale is/was a member of both bands and wouldn’t want to see the Painted Thin recordings remain unreleased. And rightfully so. Painted Thin achieved a certain attention as a live act way back when, but they never really took off, which is a bit remarkable really, when one hear these recordings today. One of a billion post-rock influenced emo-core bands, Painted Thin have a sound that is by far more direct and in-your-face than you’d expect from all the mediocre bands in a similar vein. With Furgale’s impassioned vocals and some great material, Painted Thin is one of the bands whose legend deserves to grow with time.

The only good thing about Painted Thin breaking up is that this resulted in us having Sixty Stories, which is an even more thrilling, more adventurous band. No mean feat. Furgale has relocated to the drum stool and continues to do a brilliant job. But the one everyone will rave on about is Jo Snyder who isn’t only an accomplished-but-punky guitarist, but an exciting vocalist as well, with her energetic, deadpan singing. Add to that the steady bass playing of Keli Martin and the subtle, effective use of programmed keys, and this is a remarkable outfit, indeed. The lyrics are intriguing and eerily detailed narratives of break-ups and breaking away, endearing portraits of people on the verge of falling apart and going under, but who always, in the face of struggle and despair, still cling on. With a sound that blends emo with 1980s slightly-left-of-center pop, Sixty Stories have produced a captivating, engaging album, and I, for one, can’t wait to hear more from them.

Smallman Records: http://www.smallmanrecords.com

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