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21 May 2008 @ 07:52 pm
Song of the Week #13 - Schrodinger's Cat "Headline"  
This link takes you to their myspace page where you can hear "Headline" - it will auto-start a random track - click "Headline" and crank it!

I can't say enough about Schrodinger's Cat. They opened up for Kansas on Nov. 12, 1995 in Poughkeepsie, NY and I was blown away. I scribbed my radio station info on a sheet of paper and passed it to the singer after their last song and within a week I got a call from frontman, Michael Horne. Possibly one of the nicest guys I've met in the business and I was thinking about it this week and he is definitely one of my favorite male vocalists.

The whole band is amazingly nice and I hope before the year is out I can see them onstage again :-)

Fast forward to late summer 1997 with 2 opening slots for Marillion. On 8/31 in Rochester after my interview in the bowels of The Spectrum Theater with Marillion frontman Steve Hogarth, I ascended and proceeded to watch not only Marillion's soundcheck, but S'cats as well. To that point I hadn't heard any material from their to-be sophomore release and this was one track that floored me during soundcheck. The power, the dynamic changes, the soaring vocals - I have a bad cassette tape of that soundcheck somewhere, I need to find it.

I photographed the entire night and was feet away from Mike during my favorite S'cat song, "Loch Ness Monster," and to this day I get chills when I think of it... "it's like I'm walking on a thin line, between the pleasure and the pain..." The next night they asked me to shoot from the stage at the Chance in Poughkeepsie (I wish the lighting had been as good as in Rochester).

I was lucky enough to see them a few more times, including a blistering gig in Albany at the somewhat legendary Bogie's in 1998. Their first time in Albany...I made the 90 minute trip, got there early, and was treated to an unforgettable mid-week show (sadly it was for myself, the bassists wife, and some regulars - it was when Bogie's was on it's last legs and they didn't promote anything - I'd love to see the video that Mrs. Armstrong taped that night). Mike's farewell show before heading off to CA in April of 1999 in Poughkeepsie was emotional and powerful. Then the reunion show at Wesfest later that year - another magical evening!

If you're interested in some very melodramatic text, the edited bio I wrote for them is still up at their myspace and the full length version on CDBaby.com - here's what I had to say at the time about this track:

The rocker of the album, 'Headline', takes a look at some of the more aggressive and negative ways the media handle the news of the day: "Seedy correspondents get the story of the times, never really caring what was true". Aggressive guitar driven verses are juxtaposed by flowing acoustic based choruses on this track.

Here's a shot I always liked from the Rochester show.

Click the photo and you'll get to the myspace page where you can hear "Headline" - it will auto-start a random track - click "Headline" and crank it!

(random notes while listening)
:07 what a groove
:24 great transition
:27 male/female harmony over great acoustic guitar
:50 love the enunciation accent on "rage" and "page"
:59 pickslide!
1:13 killer fill
1:21 killer transition fill #1
1:31 "believe what we read" harmony
1:35 nice keys underneath
1:45 great acoustic
1:58 double pickslide
2:04 groove
2:11 guitar lick
2:19 killer transition fill #2
2:31 mini break
2:38 key melody
2:51 add bass
2:58 add drum & guitar - saga-like
3:14 Brems, soulful and emotional guitar
3:25 add keys to mirror melody
3:38 Brems cuts loose but restrained
4:00 "whoooooa whooooooa"
4:10 guitar/key melody under Mike
4:19 add Susan
4:32 groove to end

I would gush more about these guys here, but I've already done that in the bio and you can see that on the myspace or cdbaby pages, so I'll refrain, but I will introduce the band:

Michael Horne - Vocals, Keys
Paul Bremner - Guitars
P.J. Müller - Keyboards
Mike (Jr) Armstrong - Bass
John Balducci - Drums
guest vocals on "Headline" - Susan Davis

More Schrodinger's Cat:
CD Baby - 2 minute samples of some great songs:
Same Old Storm
Potter's Field
At the Myspace link (above) check out:
All I Need
Talk to Me