Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Eric's Trip Love Tara Appreciation Day

Love Tara was a pretty seminal album in my musically developing years, a friend turned me onto it after, I think, he saw them live. Anyways, I love the story behind this album, one of my favourites. Eric's Trip had been around a few years, fronted by its dating members Rick White and Julie Doiron. At some point before Love Tara was released, Rick broke up with Julie, but they kept the band going. Love Tara was the next album, and the entire album is about the slow, disintegration of their relationship, replete with anger, betrayal, drunken answering machine messages. So, first off, you have Julie and Rick listening to each other detail where the other went wrong. Not only that, but Rick had a new girlfriend, whom he would often sing about. So, you have Julie listening, and singing lyrics about the new girl in her ex's life. Now, here's the kicker, Rick's new girfriend is named Tara S'Appart (sp?), so the ENTIRE ALBUM is named after this new girl who is the love of his life, and Julie Doiron is stuck playing songs about her ex-boyfriend's new girlfriend. Surprisingly, they stuck it out for quite a few years after this.
Eric's Trip got signed to Sub Pop when everyone was trying to find the new Seattle, and sights were briefly set on the Canadian Maritimes. To me, Eric's Trip sounds exactly what the label "grunge" connotates. The guitars range from loud to quiet, the vocals are hard to hear, sometimes buried beneath layers of fuzz. The background is full of sounds, voices, conversations heard in passing.

Eric's Trip - Follow {xxhttp://s30.yousendit.com/d.aspx?id=1REHIBVTR8UJ934Z3EZ82O9THU}

"Follow" starts off with a big bang: fuzzy guitars colliding with each other, before settling into a mid-tempo mid-90s alternative rocker. It makes perfect use of Julie Doiron's little girl vocals, echoing Rick White's on the main choruses in some perfect harmonies. This is the noisy Eric's Trip.

Eric's Trip - Frame {xxhttp://s30.yousendit.com/d.aspx?id=1FB4YZRBJNS641TYS9Z94FIFMS}

But, amidst the drama of Rick and Julie's personal lives, Eric's Trip had two other members, drummer Mark Gaudet who was pretty content to sit in the background, and other guitarist Chris Thompson, who delieverd his greatest song ever right here with "Frame" a catchy rocker with a great hook that never fails to get stuck in my head. Since Eric's Trip broke up (reformed briefly to do some shows), Rick and Bob paired up to make Elevator, who sound like a much more freaky, guitary, psych-out Eric's Trip, a natural evolution of their sound. Julie Doiron went on to release quiet, sad, pretty quiet albums under her own name and the moniker Broken Girl. But, Chris pretty much disappeared, which is too bad, I liked a lot of his stuff.

I couldn't settle on one song, much less two, so here's a 3rd, all from the same album.

Eric's Trip - Blinded {XXhttp://s30.yousendit.com/d.aspx?id=08HD1SN4WS2NR2MF0YX8D3LBMK}

This one is pure rage. It seems like someone told Julie to make a song about how she felt having to play on an album about her ex's new girlfriend, and this is what came out. It's a total shocker if all you've ever heard is Doiron's folky, mellow solo output. The guitars are angry, snarling, and the vocals are just...pained. The screaming, the screaching... It kind of sums up the anger that seems to broil just beneath the melancholic surface of everything Eric's Trip put out.

That's all I got for now...

1 comment:

marshmellow_parade said...

OMG! Another ape site!! I'm freaking out! I run http://whenapesrule.blogspot.com ~When Apes Rule The Earth! It's not throbbing though, it's just skanky.