Happy CD (2012)

Artist: Bush Tetras

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Product Overview


Label Roir Records/e1
SKU 242277631
UPC 053436832424
UPC 14 00053436832424
Format CD
Release Date 11/13/2012
Author Bush Tetras
Technical Info
Engineer Bil Emmons
Producer Don Fleming
CatalogID RUSCD 8324
Lable Name ROIR
Released 11/13/2012
Original Release 2012
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code n/a
Length 45m : 10s
Studio/Live Studio
UPC 00053436832424
Album Notes and Credits
Personnel: Cynthia Sley (vocals, percussion); Pat Place (guitar, background vocals); Dee Pop (drums, percussion, background vocals); Julia Murphy (background vocals).
Liner Note Author: Dee Pop.
Recording information: Dessau; Shelter Studios, NYC.
The Bush Tetras' Happy was originally recorded for PolyGram subsidiary Tim/Kerr Records in 1998. It was produced by Gumball frontman Don Fleming. When Seagrams bought Polygram and consolidated its host of labels, they laid off numerous employees including publicists, A&R people, and over 200 bands, the Bush Tetras among them. Happy was shelved. Numerous attempts to release it were thwarted due to lost contracts, corporate mergers, and other business snafus, while the band continued to play live. Happy was rescued from obscurity by ROIR -- a label that has been associated with the band since its founding. ROIR issued a compilation in 2007 entitled Very Very Happy, which contained earlier versions of "Nails" and "Motorhead," which are also found here, but this is a completely separate album, and these versions are the originals. To date, this 1998 record is the last studio recording from the band, whose original lineup of vocalist Cynthia Sley, guitarist Pat Place, and drummer Dee Pop was enhanced by bassist Julia Murphy after Laura Kennedy left (and eventually passed away). The Bush Tetras of Happy offer a fuller, more aggressive, looser, rawer, darker sound than the one displayed on 1996's Nona Hendryx-produced Beauty Lies. Sley's voice is right up front in the mix where it belongs, but its edges and limitations are accented more than disguised. While Happy is quite consistent, there are standouts, including the two aforementioned songs, which have remained staples of their live set. Also notable are "You Don't Know Me" and "Chinese Afro," both examples of maximal, rockist funk. Place's guitar fractures riffs, taking melody to its most angular extremes while spitting out distorted vamps and power chords. Murphy's basslines are complex, funky, and in the pocket, while Pop plays with a jazzman's sense of time and adventure, and a rocker's sense of attack. The moody darkness in the band's mature sound can be heard best on "Heart Attack," "Buckets of Blood," and especially "Oceans." Happy finds the Bush Tetras at a fully mature peak, where they're clearly invested in the creative aspect of the recording process yet in places they capture the chaotic energy of their live performances. Fleming's production is lean enough to allow the inspired playing to come to the fore and disciplined enough to showcase the BT's considerable songwriting chops. ~ Thom Jurek
Disc 1
1 Heart Attack
2 Slap
3 Trip
4 Nails
5 Chinese Afro
6 Pretty Thing
7 You Don't Know Me
8 Buckets Of Blood
9 Motorhead
10 Theremin
11 Ocean
12 Swamp Song
Product Attributes
Artist Bush Tetras
Label Roir Records
Music Format Compact Disc

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