(1999, Merge)

Another of those bands whose lack of mainstream crossover looks even more baffling in hindsight. Early 90’s Seattle band? Check. Early records on Sup Pop? Check. Ear for a glorious melody? Check.

Signed to a major label and then ignominiously dumped before coming back with an amazing swansong album back in the indie leagues? Check. This is that swansong, a glorious mix of grunge rhythms, post-hardcore howl with early emo feels, and big, big riffs.

LISTEN: Spotify

READ: Thankfully there’s been a few cheerleaders over the years. Here’s Spectrum with a great review of the album’s vinyl reissue, and another by Exclaim. And there’s a lovely retrospective of the band’s career over at Northwest Passage, which is a site I imagine I’m going to be linking to a fair bit over the next few years. Check them out if you can.