Dark’s End – Dark’s End

Dark’s End
Dark’s End
1992 (no label)
Marbach, Germany

Uli Horner – Vocals
Martin Zettler – Guitars
Dirk Nising – Bass
Christian Schmidt – Drums

Side 1:

  1. White Dove
  2. X (instrumental)

Side 2:

  1. Signs
  2. The Tramp

While the cover looks pretty gothic, the tape opens up with some chiming alt rock guitars that sound straight out of an early Sixpence None the Richer song. Then the band kicks into a guitar rock song closer to something by Plankeye or Blonde Vinyl alt rock artists. The lead singer has a strong German accent, but she is still singing in English. There is also a shredding solo on the first track. The songs on the rest of the songs tends to follow the same sound: mixtures of different forms of late 80s/early 90s alternative and some hard rock influences here and there.

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Qodesh – Three Demo 1992

Qodesh
Three Demo 1992
1992 (no label)
Evansville, Indiana, USA

Kevin Thornton – Lead vocals, bass, acoustic guitar
Gerard Medicis – Guitar, vocals
Joe Feldpausch – Drums, vocals

  1. Dead in California
  2. The Changing
  3. Here I Am
  4. 1492
  5. I Gave In

Qodesh was a heavy metal band with experimental / progressive / alternative rock tendencies. Sometimes the vocals and song structures remind me of bands like 20/20 Blind, King’s X, and Atomic Opera. But they really don’t do the power/groove metal thing, either. Its kind of more mixed with traditional progressive metal. The label seems to indicate this is their third demo, but I have only heard of one other demo called Deuteronomy 14:2. We shall see if the others turn up some day.

Garden Bower – Sacred Ground

Garden Bower
Sacred Ground
1992 (no label)
Chicago, Illinois, USA

Dave Christensen – Vocals
Rob Bochnik – Guitar
Frank Tribuzio – Guitar
Joe Link – Bass
Ollie Bauer – Drums

Side 1:

  1. Sacred Ground
  2. The Shell and the Stone

Side 2:

  1. Love Song
  2. Tribal Dance

I’m still not sure why the band named themselves after a garden bower, but it is different. The band is a kind of grung-ish, slightly funky, slightly alternative hard rock band. They were kind of mixing together the various heavy non-thrash/hardcore sounds that were popular at the time. Technically, this was considered grunge before a slightly more generic version of grunge was codified a few years later. This was the point I liked it better, especially because of fact that bands could sound different from each other. They are best when more fully committed to the funky alternative sound, like in “The Shell and the Stone.” They find a slightly heavier Black & White World, or a less twisted Breakfast With Amy sound in those songs. They start sounding a bit generic when they move away from that.

Grease Pot – “The Beach” Cassette Maxi-Single

Grease Pot
“The Beach” Cassette Maxi-Single
1992 (no label)
Massillon, Ohio, USA

Spiney Cottage Cheese Butt Hair Lips
IDY

Side 1:

  1. The Beach (v1)
  2. The Beach (v2)
  3. The Beach (v3)
  4. The Beach (v4)
  5. The Beach (v5)

Side 2:

  1. ?
  2. (instrumental)
  3. Vinyl Dreams of a Leather Sofa / America / Snack Machine / (untitled)
  4. Let Me Speak
  5. (instrumental)
  6. America / (untitled) / America the Pitiful

This is one trippy 10 song “maxi-single.” Well, kind of ten songs. The five songs on side one are 5 different versions of a song called “The Beach.” Mainly they are messing around with the vocals and solo instruments on each “song.” Side 2 is also five songs (three without names) that are even more experimental. The liner notes imply this tape was improvised, and you can tell. Kind of alternative-leaning  experimental. This is the kind of music that would fit in with The Furnace Room, Plan 7 Dist., and Corpquii Music. In fact, IDY has also released some solo albums on The Furnace Room. Oh, and there is language on this one for those that have problems with that.

Brussel – Slowdown

Brussel
Slowdown
1992 (no label)
West Sussex, England, United Kingdom

Ian Stewart – Lead vocals, guitar
Les Driscoll – Bass guitar, backing vocals
Mike Randon – Drums, backing vocals

  1. Fluorescent Hat
  2. Slowdown
  3. Fire

British band Brussel (former Brussel Spaceship) really want you to know that this was a demo that was recorded live. They repeat some form of “demo tape” or “live demo” or whatever all over the cover and tape. Good to know, but honestly the sound quality here does not sound like it was live or a demo that much. So no need to make it known. Anyways, this is quality early 90s alternative rock. This was something like the bands 6th release, so they had the 80s alt thing down in the past. They seem to have made a good transition to some 90s alt here – with a bit of funk added in here and there. I don’t think they recorded much after this release, unfortunately.

Weeping Prophet – On the Verge of Tears

Weeping Prophet
On the Verge of Tears
1992 (no label)
Akron, Ohio, USA

Jim Workman – Vocals
Stewart Hilton – Guitars
Walt Wise – Bass
John Joyce – Drums

Side 1:

  1. The Voice
  2. Diotrephes

Side 2:

  1. The Warning
  2. p32

Finally – the long lost Weeping Prophet demo! Their later demo Broken seems to be all over the place if you dig for bootleg mp3s, but I have never seen this demo out there. Weeping Prophet are usually described as “progressive/thrash metal,” and that mostly holds true here. I would say this is less progressive and more thrash, but there are still some progressive elements. In some places, if they had pushed the progressive angle and made the rough style vocal moments a bit creepier, they would have sounded like Tourniquet. As it is, songs like “Diotrephes” seem to still have a strong Tourniquet influence. Also, the sound on this demo is a bit cleaner than Broken was. The band member names really aren’t given on the tape. There is a drawing of the bands hair with mostly illegible signatures under each one, and then extensive thank you lists from Jym, Stu, Walt, Ed (the manger), and John. I am assuming that these were the same band members as listed on Broken later, so I have used that info above. It could be wrong, though.

Say-So – Wonderful World

Say-So
Wonderful World
1990 (no label)
Nashville, Tennessee, USA

Kim Thomas – Lead vocals, backing vocals, autoharp
Jim Thomas – Electric guitars, acoustic guitars, autoharp, backing vocals, keyboards, drum programming

Matt Pierson – Bass
Chris Rodriguez – Additional background vocals
Lisa Rodriguez – Additional background vocals
Russ Long – Additional drum programming

Side 1:

  1. Wonderful World
  2. Taken by the Moment
  3. Love is a Word
  4. Camella Sings

Side 2:

  1. Mercy Me
  2. Waiting for You
  3. Monday’s Child
  4. Beyond the World

Another unknown release from Say-So appears out of nowhere! This makes 4 releases of theirs outside of their two label releases that I have uncovered (still waiting to hear two of those). There are still some gaps in their discography time-line, so there could be even more out there. This particular project is more driven by the husband/wife duo than a fuller band, but the result is still the same. Say-So always seems to produce high quality alternative pop. You can see why they go signed, you just have to wonder what took so many years for it to happen?