Sick Of Sarah Finally Gets Some Respect.

Wednesday, 09 March 2011

The excitement is really beginning to turn up to a fever pitch in the Sick Of Sarah camp. The band's new album, 2205, is out and generating some positive press, the shows the band has played most recently have been getting better received and have been really well-attended and it has all really boosted morale in the band; all five members of the Minneapolis-based, all-girl rock band are laughing regularly and freely and, according to singer Abisha Uhl and bassist Jamie Holm [who tag-teamed the phone line for an interview with Ground Control –ed] the best prize of all has been the respect the band has won with the release. “It was a while in getting to the point where we'd get any respect,” confesses Uhl. “We've been a band for six years and I guess now we're ready for this level of respect and we weren't before. Now we're actually hearing people say, 'Hey! I actually do like your music and I mean it!' [Uhl and Holm laughing] The critics are a little friendlier this time around and they have some really good constructive criticism and pointers as well and really good things to say about the new record.”

The praise that 2205 has received is most richly deserved. From the very beginning of “Overexposure,” listeners will be struck by the fact that they really haven't heard the sort of rock & roll that this band is making in a very long time, and how very missed it has been but, better still, there's power in this pop, not nostalgia. As Uhl spits the song's “Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run as fast as you can/ how low can you go/you're in out of control/And, oh no, you're over-exposed” chorus, listeners will sigh in ecstasy; those who thought (mourned) that they didn't make like pop like this anymore will dance a gleeful jig before they start a mosh pit. 2205 proves itself to not just be a “one-song stand” after “Overexposure” winds down as tracks including “Simple Parts,” “Kick Back,” “Kiss Me” and “Cigarettes” all play to the darker side of the adolescent female psyche, but do it in such a way that each song feels more like a kiss-off than a lament. In that approach, Sick Of Sarah sets itself apart from the troublegum crowd (like Care Bears On Fire) and barely even bears a passing resemblance to the tripe that flows a little closer to the mainstream; it's genuine, hooky rock-pop and, in being that, both the band and its' debut album end up being a brand apart from everything else currently being force-fed down the public's collective throat, it's actually good. “This is our second album and the changes we made from how we made the first one were really great,” says Holm of the process that ultimately yielded 2205. “I think the writing of it took the better part of two years, but the situation with recording at The Sonic Ranch was excellent. Our last recording was done in Minneapolis and there are a lot of distractions in that city for us. I mean, it's where we're from right? So there are jobs and people to hang out with but going away to Texas eliminated all of that. That was definitely helpful in getting the record done in ten days. We had demos of more songs, but we ended up recording just exactly what we wanted.”

“Yeah, we were living at the studio so we were pretty much existing in that space and we had it twenty-four hours a day,” adds Uhl. “There were no restrictions on when you could and couldn't record, which was great; you literally roll out of bed, grab a burrito from the kitchen, walk into the studio and record right away. Sometimes I'd be up early in the morning and our manager/producer Evan would already be there – he wouldn't have slept – working on the record. I'd be there sometimes at like four o'clock in the morning – a little drunk – with my camera, playing piano, messing around with Stevie Ray Vaughan's old guitar and other stuff like that; it was great.”

Now emboldened by the response to 2205 and the positive reception to the shows they've already done to support the album, the band has already begun to write new material for a another record, and is toying with the idea of playing some of those new songs live while out on the road, according to Uhl and Holm, and have started to tentatively plan on recording as soon as they've come off the road and get the green light to do so. “As far as writing goes in the future, I think there's going to be elements of both records in the new songs,” betrays Holm when asked what the band envisions the new material beyond 2205 will sound like. “There's always going to be both the poppier stuff and the darker stuff, but I think we're going to keep exploring new options too but the people who come out to our shows might get an early idea of what we're doing as we go. We might play some new stuff that we haven't recorded yet, but that usually comes up at random. Like, after we've written a song, we'll just randomly decide that we want to play it one night; it just depends on when it comes together because we're excited about it.”

“Yeah, we've already started working on new songs for the third one, but that's not going to happen for another year at least before we go into the recording studio,” continues Uhl. “We're working on them though, and working on our show, getting better at performances, touring, playing the shit out of the stuff that we already have. We love to write, so there'll be a lot more coming.”



Sick Of Sarah is currently on tour through the U.S. in support of 2205. Click here for an updated listing of upcoming shows.

Further Reading:
Review of Sick Of Sarah's 2205 on Ground Control


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