EP Review by Mark Bayross
Chosen by MTV Online as their “Band to watch in the year 2000” and Yahoo’s Internet Life as the “Best Unsigned Band In America” (beating 5,300 acts!), Milwaukee’s Spirit Creek may be yet to break through to the international (or national) first division, but, as this five-track EP demonstrates, all that may change soon.
CALL THE RAIN was produced by Steven Haigler (Fuel, Clutch) and is evidence that, while grafting away on their many support slots opening for the likes of Filter, Bush, Nickelback and Creed, Spirit Creek have been paying attention. The production is tight – sturdy drums, chunky guitars and driving bass are all present and correct – while lead singer Doug Schoeneck, with his highly personal “simply complex” lyrics and heartfelt delivery, has a touch of the Chad Kroeger about him. This is a sound that should shift units by the truckload state-side.
It’s hard to know what to make of this record. On the one hand, the band can seriously deliver the goods (…AND TOGETHER powers along in particularly storming fashion), and these songs ooze melody, but occasionally they veer dangerously into AOR territory (see IS THERE SOMEONE OUT THERE and WHY ASK WHY) and the last thing the world needs is yet another Nickelback clone.
But as NEVER CLOSE YOUR EYES finishes this EP off in explosive, rousing fashion, you’d be hard-pushed not to be impressed. For a band with no record company behind them, Spirit Creek have already honed their craft to a remarkable level and should make a chart-sized splash whenever they do eventually get snapped up.
You can buy CALL THE RAIN and their earlier album THE MASQUERADE from their official site.