Cher U.K.

While the scenery that surrounds its hometown (Kansas City, Missouri) may give the illusion of serenity, the wryly named Cher U.K. does its best to disturb the peace with metallically inclined garage-rock that dissects the local environment with a smirk. On the trio’s first album — a dozen brash ditties in 33 minutes — the…

L7

Like Lunachicks and Babes in Toyland, L7 emerged from rock’s pre-riot grrrl wing, seeking not to steamroller or dismantle the male mosh society but rather to join it. Girls just wanna bang heads, as it were. That’s a feminist stance in its own right, but in time L7’s four members would show they had plenty…

Uncle Joe’s Big Ol’ Driver

Reveling in the sort of post-punk disassembly of classic rock first attempted in mid-’80s Minnesota, Uncle Joe’s Big Ol’ Driver dug into big’n’beefy sprawling riffwork with gusto and a knack for songs that stick on its all-fun first album. Nodding enthusiastically toward the full-frontal melodic rock of the Replacements and Soul Asylum (as well as…

Cranberries

Hooking up with a Limerick trio (guitarist Noel Hogan, his bass-playing brother Mike Hogan and drummer Feargal Lawler) that had been backing a different singer under the name the Cranberry Saw Us, Dolores O’Riordan became the frontwoman and lyricist for the rechristened Cranberries. Drawing on the folky traditions of her nation’s music, the Irish singer/guitarist…

Dashboard Saviors

The ’90s roots-rock revival has allowed some fine bands to gain a deserved foothold. Others have merely had the good fortune to be swept up in their wake: Georgia’s Dashboard Saviors are of the second variety. While the band was enough of an Athens favorite to be able to enlist Pete Buck, Mike Mills and…

Ass Ponys

Seeking to remedy rock’s sickly lack of humor, Cincinnati’s Ass Ponys prescribe some wildly oddball tales of underappreciated aspects of America. The foursome coalesced in 1989, when singer/guitarist Chuck Cleaver (a veteran of the Lunchbuddies and Gomez) and ex-Libertines bassist Randy Cheek threw in their lot together. Mr. Superlove (produced by Afghan Whigs bassist and…

Chris Mars

Oddly enough, for a while, the most prolific artist to rise out of the ashes of Minneapolis’ self-destructive Replacements was drummer Chris Mars. The unfailing rhythmic glue that held the ‘Mats together through the wild digressions of its early days, Mars became so dissatisfied with Paul Westerberg’s intentions on 1990’s All Shook Down that his…

Tripping Daisy

Despite dissonant image-consciousness and a trace of Jane’s Addiction in its sound, this Dallas pop-rock quartet is, at heart, as innocuous and virtuous as a troop of boy scouts. The late cover codger on the band’s debut earns the band’s dedication and the admonition to “Be Kind. Respect the elderly,” while the unlisted hidden track…

Pete Droge

After honing his chops playing punk in Seattle’s March of Crimes (which also contained future Soundgarden bassist Ben Shepherd), singer/guitarist/pianist Pete Droge relocated to Portland, Oregon, where he became one of the better finds in the ’90s A&R scrounge for neo-folk artists. Entering the fray as a Northwestern troubadour who could easily be mistaken for…

Miss Alans

The Miss Alans formed at Fresno State University, majoring in dreamy pop with minors in R.E.M. jangle and lightweight psychedelia. Smack the Horse is a more apt representation of the band’s technique than All Hail Discordia, which was recorded and mixed live to 2-track in a club and has a rushed, uneven quality to both…

Ivy

Following the seductive cool-up of Everything but the Girl and Sade, dreamy French pop began washing up on American shores in the mid-’90s, coalescing into a minor stylistic development. Although formed and based in New York City, Ivy has a Paris-born singer, Dominique Durand, to give it a legitimate claim to the accent. Thanks to…

Kevin Salem

Since his days in Dumptruck, Pennsylvania-born guitarist/singer Kevin Salem has had his hands full producing (Madder Rose, Scarce, Grover), playing with friends (Roscoe’s Gang, Freedy Johnston, Yo La Tengo, Chris Harford, Miracle Legion) and doing session work (Pooh Sticks) — not to mention a debilitating bout with lyme disease. The New York resident also writes…

Keb’ Mo’

South-Central bluesman Keb’ Mo’ (Kevin Moore) knocked around the LA bar scene for years, backing veterans like violinst Papa John Creach and sax player Monk Higgins, before turning to the city’s theater circuit. Rainmaker is a collection of folk-tinged R&B and reggae originals, one of which (“Has Anybody Seen My Girl”) he reprised upon returning…

Mike Johnson

Where Am I? proves that there’s more to Mike Johnson than his role as bassist for Dinosaur Jr. While remaining part of the Mascis fold, Johnson has always pursued his own vision — first as a member of the defunct Oregon punk combo Snakepit and, later, as the arranger, co-producer and guitarist on Screaming Trees…

Lenny Kravitz

The old fart’s cry — that youth is wasted on the young — gets a new twist in the hands of Lenny Kravitz, a sprout who reckons that history shouldn’t be left to its ghosts. Reaching back to the era that ended with Woodstock, the singing multi-instrumentalist borrows from the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix and Sly…

Contributors

These folks either wrote reviews that appear on the site or wrote for Trouser Press magazine. If anyone listed below cares to E-mail us with a link you’d like added, just let us know. And ditto if anyone is AWOL from this list. Grant AldenDavid AntrobusJem AswadTroy J. AugustoMichael AzerradCary BakerMichael BakerEmily BeckerJohn BergstromArt BlackJohn…