Trinity – New Dawn

Trinity
New Dawn
1989 (no label)
Anneberg, Sweden

Peter Anderson – Vocals
Fredrik Björk – Guitars
Patrik Carlsson – Bass
Pierre Andersson – Keyboards, backing vocals
Jörgen Björk – Drums

Robban – backing vocals

  1. A New Dawn
  2. Close to the Edge
  3. Bound
  4. One Who Cares

The information I can find on this band says that it was started by four members of Creed. But none of the people above were in the German band Creed (or the American post-grunge Creed for that matter). So there must be a third Creed out there from Sweden. Anyways, Christian “Rivel” Liljegren of Modest Attraction, Audiovision, Divinefire, etc fame was actually the first vocalist on their 1988 demo Soldiers of Freedom. Christian left and they got Peter. As you can guess, the sound here is the Swedish variation of 80s commercial metal. Well, with a noticeable neoclassical influence as well. Its very good, of course – but the band really didn’t seem to go anywhere after this demo.

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Vague – Rough Mix Demo

Vague
Rough Mix Demo
1990 (no label)

  1. Close My Eyes [rough mix]
  2. 2 Lonely People [very rough mix]
  3. Will You Stay [acoustic snatch mix]

My guess is that this is a collection of songs for the same New Talent Showcase at Cornerstone that other bands were making tapes for as well. Vague is known for being the band that evolved into The Wayside. “Close My Eyes” and “2 Lonely People” are basically just rougher mixes of the same songs that later appeared on A Glimpse of Deep Symbolism. The song “Will You Stay” is a slightly different version of the song that appeared on Collage. I don’t know if it was planned for A Glimpse of Deep Symbolism and then dropped or what. Vague was a bit more Alternative rock than The Wayside, but still very good at it.

Jet Jaguar – Jet Jaguar

Jet Jaguar
Jet Jaguar
1994 (no label)
Mesa, Arizona, USA

Keith Cordell – Guitar, bass
Ted Worthless – Bass, guitar
Theresa Hodge – Drums
Nathan Marlowe – Samples

  1. Impala
  2. 51 Pegasi
  3. Spy vs. Spy
  4. Needle in a Haystack
  5. Speed the Light
  6. Mariner

This is another find from when I found the website for the Right Reverend Theodore Munk, also known as Ted Worthless of No Laughing Matter fame. He had some mp3s of old bands up there, but this band I had actually heard of before. The information above is from a tape that I traded a few years ago. The online version has a different song order, renames “Needle in a Haystack” to “Angels 20,” and adds the song “Menudo Patrol.” This is some cool instrumental surf rock. This band seems to be one of the bands that filled the gap between when No Laughing Matter broke up and reformed later.

Innocence in a Sense – Trigger

Innocence in a Sense
Trigger
1993 (no label)
Florida, USA

Brad Boughton – Vocals
Eric Swanson – Guitars
Dave Scharr – Bass guitar
Mike Walker – Drums

Side 1:

  1. The End of Reliance
  2. Obscurity
  3. The Yellow Brick Road

Side 2:

  1. Persistence
  2. Scream
  3. Trigger

Okay, so I decided to check out this tape based on the band title and picture. They just scream 90s alt, don’t they? First track starts off a bit mellow, but it does pick up the pace. It sounds like it could have been on one of the Light From the Underground comps. I didn’t like it at first, but it’s kind of growing on me. The second song is more aggressive and I like it better from the get go. The rest of the tape follows suit – alternating between faster songs that I like right away and slower songs that are growers. A couple of songs don’t ever grow, but that happens with demos.

Skin Deep – Demo

Skin Deep
Demo
1987 Independent
Tempe, Arizona, USA

Mitzi Melville – Vocals
Theodore Munk (Ted Worthless) – Guitar
Marc Oxborrow – Bass
Dave Baker – Drums

  1. Buffalo
  2. No Clear Skies
  3. Jah (and Our Theory Of The Universe)
  4. Pretty
  5. Cajun Spiced Potatoes
  6. Butterfly
  7. Instrumental
  8. Which Needle Is Mine, Mon?

So while cruising the interwebs looking for info for the CUE, I stumbled across the website for the Right Reverend Theodore Munk, also known as Ted Worthless of No Laughing Matter fame. He had some mp3s of old bands up there, so I thought would add them to the website. The first up is Skin Deep, a band that existed around 1987 (about the same as No Laughing Matter). The sound here is kind of garagy, trippy form of alternative rock not too far off from NLM. Dave Baker was also the drummer on the first NLM demo as well. The recording quality these songs really isn’t that bad considering this was on a 4-track cassette deck. Interesting from a historical perspective as well.

Sovereign Steel – Demo

Sovereign Steel
Demo
19?? (no label)
Denison, Texas, USA

  1. Dark Hour
  2. By Our Love
  3. Market of Destruction

So all I have on this demo is in the picture above. Turns out that this, in fact, the same band that released a demo called Say Your Prayers in 1990. All of the songs here was also on the Say Your Prayers demo. So I don’t know if this an earlier or later demo that was re-recorded, or a sampler of their full demo. These sound like the same versions, but slightly different recordings. Either way, the sound is thrash metal with a heavy early Metallica influence. If you dig around online, you can find the six-song Say Your Prayers demo.

Missing Information: What year was this released? Who played on this?

Rise – …From the Ruins

Rise
…From the Ruins
1991 Awakened Records
Blacksburg, Virginia, USA

Allison Ballew – Vocals
John Sexton – Guitar, vocals
Steve Coates – Bass
Henry Anglin – Drums

Side 1:

  1. Director’s Chair
  2. The Bridge

Side 2:

  1. In Limbo
  2. Possibility

I really didn’t know anything about this band, but I converted it mainly based on the fact that Kevin 131 of Sorrow of Seven / Aleixa fame helped produce it, and there is a dedication to Mark Heard in the liner notes. Interesting mixture. So is this more folk / Americana like Heard, or industrial / metal of Aleixa? Does the presences of former So7 / Aleixa vocalist Laurel Snapper on backing vocals sway this more to industrial? Nope. This is alternative rock with female vocals. But Allison Ballew has more of the powerhouse vocals you typically see in metal than the forcefully fragile vocals you usually see in 90s female-fronted alt rock. The band utilizes this difference well, creating some moody yet driving alt rock that has just enough U2 influence to connect with 80s fans, but enough indie rock drive to propel it into the 90s. Don’t know if this band went anywhere, but it would be a shame of they didn’t. This demo is a bit different, but I really liked it. The last song “Possibility” is possibly my favorite track – very catchy but different and out there at the same time.