Thursday, August 31, 2006

Pegasus Now- Careless Loveseeds


In some ways, nothing can be worse for a new local band than gaining instant recognition in the local press, especially when it seems that the press might have jumped the gun. Sure, it is probably quite a thrill to practically sell out the first show you ever play at a popular Dallas venue, and I would assume that it is a significant confidence booster to see your name in the Dallas Observer several times throughout your first month of existence. However, this kind of attention sets a fairly high bar for a band that is just starting out, making it difficult for them to avoid the dreaded "overhyped" tag that often ends up thrusting such bands back down to reality.

Pegasus Now has received this kind of early attention, and not surprisingly, they have yet to deliver on the promises of their buzz. The truth is that Pegasus Now, at least at this point, sounds like a fairly talented but solidly average local band that could easily become either a successful local act or a perennial opening band at the Barley House, depending on where they go from here. The level of attention they have received really shouldn't factor in to an honest assessment of their output, but such things are unavoidable. The buzz is the reason that most local music fans have even heard of them, and it is certainly a factor in our decision to review this record. And although it is easy to see why people around town might be optimistic about the band's future, their present output doesn't really warrant the current hype.

Careless Loveseeds, the band's debut EP, showcases a group of musicians that might have their shit together, but clearly haven't figured out what to do with it. Of course, this is a common problem with new bands, and it is something that we have written about on this blog many times before. Styles and influences are all over the place and often don't mix quite right, transitions aren't executed as well as they could be, and certain parts of certain songs are underplayed, overplayed, too long, too short, underdeveloped, overly ambitious, or just simply need a bit more or a bit less of whatever they have too much or too little of. But on the bright side, there are flashes of inspired songwriting, strong guitar work, catchy choruses, and tight playing that reveal enough potential to save Pegasus Now, even if their debut is little more than an average local release.

Pegasus Now is a guitar pop band at its core, and if thats your thing, there are several songs on this EP that will probably please you. Lead singer Neu LeBlanc has a capable and soothing voice, and also appears to have quite a knack for writing catchy choruses when he wants to. "Stranger to the Dayes" displays the kind of memorable songwriting that draws people into local music venues, and also features an airy, post-rock keyboard hook that hints at a band willing to go beyond the conventions of indie pop, despite many signs of restraint and trepidation concerning how far they might want to take it. Throughout the record, a diverse range of influences are revealed, with Steely Dan, Sea and Cake, Jamiroqui, the Who, Catherine Wheel, and various elements of shoegaze, r&b and late period britpop dominating the palette. This diverse blend works well on closer "Dance on Pure Glass," where the band eventually allows its rhythm section to take control and set a spacey, low key electrosoul groove behind LeBlanc's soft vocals, playing on all of the band's strengths. But on songs like "Mr. Greycoat" and "Babydoll," the band doesn't seem to know what it wants to do, as bits and pieces of bold, structured pop fade in and out of songs that are otherwise lose and hazy in construction and delivery, often changing the mood before they set it and leaving the listener a bit puzzled. Diversity isn't a bad thing of course, but when too many styles are thrown at you at once in an often awkward manner, it starts sounding less like diversity and more like indecision. Along with "Pure Glass," opener "Tea for Two" is probably the strongest song throughout, and it is also by far the most cohesive, with a simple guitar hook and chorus that avoids stalling and meandering, which many of the other songs on this EP tend to do.

Of course, it would be interesting to hear some of these songs taken in different and more challenging directions, but it seems that Pegasus Now is more comfortable within the framework of straightforward pop. In fact, they could probably become one of the more popular indie pop acts in the area if they can find themselves before the buzz well runs dry.

39 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, you pretty much hit the nail on the head. I think with some time to gel, these guys are going to be capable of making an excellent album. It seems like this release is basically a bunch of guys learning how to musically communicate with each other, which is kinda cool. If having too many cooks in the kitchen, or too much buzz too soon doesn't kill them, I predict these guys, within a year, could be delivering material that manifests their potential. Hope they stick to it.

10:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i agree too. they're new (well, bandwise at least) and they still have to figure out where they're going and how that's going to sound but they aren't wearing skinny ties or singing songs about the wonders of androgyny so there's definitely hope yet.

they're no black tie dynasty. just wanted to try to kick that dead horse one more time.

11:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just hope they ALL take their shirts off, next time they play.

11:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ya - here here on the black tie dynasty comment. Thank God they aren't like those morons.

11:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's strange that Pegasus Now have a sound that could totally end up on KDGE, but they don't make me cringe like I do when Black Tie Dynasty is within a 2-mile radius. I guess it's the pretensiousness factor. or the hairspray factor.
But no, I don't want to see any of them with their shirts off, thank you very much.

12:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They put on a good live show - I'll say that. And, again, thoughts of suicide don't come to mind when I hear them or think about them (see Black Tie Dynasty)

12:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wait, how did black tie dynasty get brought into this?

those poor bastards.

12:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

black tie dynasty got pulled into this because they are actually the axis of the free world. all topics eventually come back to black tie dynasty. the answer to the actual value of pi? black tie dynasty.

1:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pie is tasty. Unless from Black Tie Dynasty made it.

1:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the only thing Black Tie Dynasty got pulled into was a circle jerk.

1:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

someone from Black Tie Dynasty, that is.

1:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I fancy Black Guy Die Nasty quite a bit, thank you. It's one of me favorite pornographic snuff films.

1:15 PM  
Blogger delmorepilcrow said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i'm starting to think j.r. and the people who shot him have jumped the shark.........

1:44 PM  
Anonymous whomever said...

WSJ's review reads as if there somehow some kind of importance to the local press/scene (or lack thereof). I don't have the recording, and I'm sure it's nothing to write home about, but making reference to a band's local "hype" in the first paragraph makes want to not read the article and just listen for myself. who gives a fuck about hype anyway? It would be really nice if certain "journalists" in the "indie" scene would just listen to fucking music for a change. "Oh such and such band are so over-hyped that I know I won't like their record." This attitude is more antiquated than, i dunno, ian mckaye and henry rollins on the same stage. Hype only exists if you pay attention to it, and journalists should spend more time listening and less time reading.
That being said, I'm sure the Pegasus Now EP isn't that amazing, but i never expected it to be. If and when I listen to it, I'll judge based on whether or not I like the sound. They are definitley way cool live, and I think they'll be really incredible if they stick to it.

1:51 PM  
Anonymous whomever said...

oh yeah black tie dynasty sucks goat dick in satan's inner-chambers.

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's really a good cd. Sure it kinda varies between different styles of music, but look at the group of musicians and their differing backgrounds as local musicians. You can tell they're still a band developing their sound, but it's a promising development.

If everyone here claims to be such free thinking music fans, who don't give a shit what the observer tells them, they shouldn't be buying into local "hype" anyway.

Fags.

2:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Neu LeBlanc should run for governor.

2:02 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

We've jumped the shark? How? I love these stupid little comments that insult us without any examples or even a concrete point.

And who says that anyone is buying into local hype, or that we even really care? Of course local hype doesn't matter in the big scheme of things, but isn't it noteworthy that Pegasus Now has received so much attention early on? I'm beginning to think that some of you people don't know how to read.

2:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i don't know how to read. can black tie dynasty teach me to read?

2:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, you were spot-on Stoney. It analyzed the disc from a social perspective,rather than a marxist, feminist, or purely aesthetical p.o.v.
Any of these are valid forms of critique, but your readers wouldn't know that unless they'd taken a journalism course.
There's no precedence, template, or editors for blogs people! That's why they're interesting.
The Pegasus Now CD is great, by the way. "Stranger to the Dayes" alone is worth the price of admission.

2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and i am the world's critic on music

Black tie is way more tolerable than
the Pegaus but thats not saying much

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Black Pie Tastesnasty

5:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PEGASUS NOW IS THE WORST BAND IN TEXAS. THE END.

5:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

love seeds is the perfect name for this sperm they call music.

5:27 PM  
Anonymous dancingdragon said...

this blog adds to the hype of this band. so to write about how they are an average band that could go somewhere is fine,But no you want to dog a band for having a buzz in Dallas. PLEASE!!! Sounds like this blog has issues with their friends bands not getting love from the press and the cool kids in Dallas. Who gives a fuck! Get a job where you have the power to change that. And get some therapy for your envy issues.the world is not fair. get over it! As far as your review of the band's ep your right on.

5:52 PM  
Blogger jamo said...

worst band in texas? worse than the burden brothers? worse than south fm?

6:46 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

dancing dragon, you've done such a good job making yourself look like an idiot that I don't have to.

7:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wait, who is this band? i've never even heard of them and they're getting a review on this blog? smells fishy.

9:02 PM  
Anonymous anonymous said...

i think that's strident zend who keeps writing in all caps. what's their prob anyways?

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haven't heard of it? It was #2 on Good Records and CD Worlds charts. I think it's selling pretty well. Nothing fishy about that.
Y'all should review Red Monroe's new one too.

10:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pegasus Pie Dynasty

11:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes, i'm sure weshotjr.com envy's your hype, dumbasses.


...like they don't have a hype to call their own.

2:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymous said...

i think that's strident zend who keeps writing in all caps. what's their prob anyways?
7:28 PM

--

I thought the same goddamn thing.

9:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Srident is, by far, my least favorite chewing gum

11:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

unicorns later.

11:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the previous comment is sooooo ironically hilarious!

10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

aren't Pegasus Now best friends with Sam Mackabitch?

4:54 PM  
Anonymous tiffany walsh said...

I hope that the band members of Pegasus Now have the common sense to consider the source when reading the negative comments and insults. I feel like I have been reading notes being passed back and forth from 1'st graders! I wonder how many of the people that criticize musicians even know how to hold a freakin guitar much less play one! And while I am on the subject of first graders, didn't your moms teach you that if you don't have anything nice to say don't open your mouth! Congrats to Pegasus Now for having the courage to go out and do what inspires you!
I went to one of their shows recently and I was very impressed with their talent! Keep up the good work and ignore the idiots. I don't normally like the style of music they play and I thoroughly enjoyed their show! All you first graders, keep doing your homeowork and maybe you will make it to the second grade!

11:00 PM  

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