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The Apples In Stereo
Tone Soul Evolution
Elephant 6/SpinART

Seeking some fruit-flavoured 60's inspired underground naivety-pop, to slip away from a dull and grey everyday? Have a bite of the most red and glossy Apples around. And they're even in Stereo! From Denver, Colorado: the Apples In Stereo! Formed in 1992, when Robert Schneider (vocals, guitar) just had met up with some new friends; Jim McIntyre (bass) and Hilarie Sidney (drums, vocals), who both shared the same affection for the Beach Boys (and related pop) as Robert, who has claimed himself to be "a certified lifelong Beach Boys nut". The friends became a band, with one Chris on lead-guitar, to let out their pop-obsessions by creating fine music. They even established their own record label, under the name The Elephant 6 Recording Co. Since then they've released some singles and EP's. Chris dropped out of the Apples in -94, Jim left some months later the same year. Robert and Hilarie continued, with a line of friends being on and off various instruments, in and out the band, and recorded the debut-album Fun Trick Noisemaker (1995), before launching this - their 2nd album, Tone Soul Evolution, late last year. The album is now tried being pushed out to a larger audience, as SpinART has a deal with Sire. So, to all of you with a slight desire for 4-track pop-charm, check out the Apples and their musical evolution.

The Apples is sort of being part of their own, "good-hearted pop-wave", together with friends in other bands, such as the Athens, GA combo Olivia Tremor Control, and its "offspring" Neutral Milk Hotel, the Lilys, the Minders, the Felt Pilots, and others. (A folky-psychedelic pop-scene described by Robert Schneider as: "friends making friendly music".) Inspired by the music of (as already mentioned) Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys, the Beatles, the Kinks, the Small Faces, Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd, the Velvet Underground, and others. Plus also the younger sound of the (late 80's/early 90's) underground, such as the "Flying Nun-scene" of New Zealand, the TeenBeat-pop of Unrest, and Pavement. Tone Soul Evolution is pop-confetti with a big heart, and a warming charm. This time it was recorded in a "real" studio, but with additional instrumentation/orchestration done at home, on their 8-track recorder. The time-machine ride starts with Seems So, a noble pop-song with beautiful harmonies. Followed by the very Kinksy What's The # ?. I must admit to be a big fan of Silver Chain with Hilarie - the drummer girl - singing. There are lots of kool guitar-work and nice backing vocals (plenty of "ooo-la-la-la" and "ba-ba-bah" refrains). One of my ultimate favourites is the wide-spread but yet discreet fuzzy noise-curtains of The Golden Flower, the b-side of the bonus single following this vinyl edition. (The single being sides 3 and 4 of Tone Soul Evolution!) Other favourite tracks are the mildly psychedelic Get There Fine, Tin Pan Alley (it somehow makes me think of the Rutles...), and the dreamy and sneaking The Silvery Light Of A Dream.

Yes, I've been having this dream; in which I see hundreds, thousands, suddenly finding out of the Oasis pop-hoax of vulgarity, to realise what's the name of the real retro-pop-oasis. Let the enthusiastic goodness of the Apples In Stereo fill you with pure joy. One song a day, and you definitely won't need any doctor for a long time. Hooka-hey!

Copyright © 1998 Håvard Oppøyen e-mail address

You may also want to check out our Apples In Stereo articles/reviews: #1 Hits Explosion!, - an interview with Robert Schneider, The Discovery of a World Inside the Moone, Velocity of Sound, Electronic Projects for Musicians, Holiday Mood, New Magnetic Wonder, Travellers In Space And Time.

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