The Lonely Now – Captive

The Lonely Now
1986 Narrowpath Records
Pleasant Hill, California, USA

Coach (Greg Sostrom) – Lead vocals, guitar
Kevin (Riemer) – Vocals, drums
Phil (Watson) – Vocals, bass guitar

Side 1:

  1. Reject a Thought
  2. If I Could
  3. Running Faster
  4. R.C.
  5. All My Dreams

Side 2:

  1. Captive
  2. Dead of Night
  3. Thunderclouds
  4. Traitor
  5. No Secrets
  6. How Many More

The Lonely Now is a relatively somewhat-known and respected alternative rock band in the Christian tape underground. This is also one of the first releases on Narrowpath Records, which went on to release classic albums by Breakfast with Amy, The Crucified, and many other artists. Greg Sostrom was the person behind Narrowpath, as well as The Lonely Now (although he was just listed as “Coach” on this release). Sostrom also released some solo albums under the name of “Greg Strange” after The Lonely Now called it quits. This demo found the band being influenced by all kinds of 80s alt – except for U2. It seems like they often tried to avoid a U2 influence, which was probably what made them stand out. The U2 clones were impossible to get away from, but to these ears I hear Sting and The Police mixed with The Smiths more than anything else. After this album, they released two more full length albums (Original Intentions in 1987 and Honest Tear in 1990) before calling it a day. You can hear a low quality rip of the entire cassette on YouTube as well:

Dance of the Porcupines – April Days

Dance of the Porcupines
April Days
1992 Narrowpath Records / Major Drone Records
San Mateo, California, USA

Danny Webb – Rhythm Guitars / Vocals
Reed Sutton – Lead Guitars / Bass Guitar
Patrick Roche – Drums

  1. Feels Like Rain
  2. The Fallen Ground
  3. You And I
  4. If You Believe
  5. April Days
  6. Little Children
  7. A La La The Day
  8. Happy Song
  9. We Are

All songs written by Dance of the Porcupines

Following the release of their 1989 Demo, Dance of the Porcupines signed with Narrowpath and recorded April Days. I have never really been sure if it was actually released or not – Narrowpath seemed to have a problem with getting albums out, even though many of them were really good albums. Since this was a Narrowpath album, Greg Sostrum (aka Greg Strange) helped out on production and mixing. Thankfully, the band uploaded the entire album on YouTube for your listening pleasure.

“Feels Like Rain” and “Little Children” from the 1989 Demo are re-recorded here. They continue developing their jangly alternative rock sound that is equal parts R.E.M. and The Smithereens. Listening to this again, I am reminded of how good they were, and sadly how overlooked. “April Days” from this release went on to be on their full-length CD And Why Not? in 1994. Also of note – I found files online a long time ago of a self-titled 1991 demo with the songs “A-La-La,” “Fallen Ground,” and “April Days” which pretty much sound like the version on this album. It might have been a pre-signing demo that was used to get signed. But there is no information about that one anywhere online. Thankfully, the band also uploaded And Why Not to YouTube as well.