Braxton Hicks
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Braxton Hicks

Wilmington, Delaware, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2018 | SELF | AFTRA

Wilmington, Delaware, United States | SELF | AFTRA
Established on Jan, 2018
Band Alternative Indie

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"Allmusic Biography"

East Coast indie rock outfit with a melodic, distortion-friendly sound in the vein of contemporaries like Belly and the Breeders.

Taking influence from the more distortion-friendly corners of '80s college rock, Braxton Hicks' melodic, restless indie rock emerged from Delaware in the mid-'90s. After releasing their debut EP dissolve in 1997, they issued two albums before going on hiatus in the mid-2000s. With a lineup that included all four founding members, the band returned with the Getaway EP in 2018.

Magnet Indie Music Sampler, Vol. 5 Carrie Baith (vocals, guitar), Bill Bush (guitar), Roger Hillis (bass), and Rod Whisner (drums) formed Braxton Hicks in Dover, Delaware in 1994. The band began performing at clubs up and down the East Coast and self-released the five-song EP dissolve in 1997. Two singles off the EP, "Starry Eyes" and "Deep," gained significant airplay on regional commercial and college radio stations. The band also had tracks on several CD compilations, including the 58/59 Records/Tortilla Records music sampler Rosetta Stone: Explosion 1997, the Philly Music Scene 1996 compilation, DC's Frozen Tongue compilation, and the Magnet Indie Music Sampler, Vol. 5.

With new bassist Bill Degnan, the band signed to Miracle Baby Records at the end of 1997 and released its debut full-length, Where the Sky Meets the Ground, in September 1998. Whisner was replaced by drummer Chris Lausch following the recording; at the same time, original bassist Hillis returned to the fold, prompting Degnan's exit.

After adding Mike Fernandez (guitar) and Dave Manges (violin) to the lineup, they recorded the follow-up, Modesty, as a six-piece, releasing it in 2002. The band toured extensively in support of the release, including a stop at SXSW.

After a lengthy hiatus during which Baith became Carrie Baith Bush, she, Bill Bush, Hillis, Fernandez, and original drummer Whisner followed the lead of contemporaries like Belly and the Breeders and regrouped in the late 2010s. By then based in Philadelphia, Braxton Hicks issued the Getaway EP in November 2018. - Allmusic


"Where the Sky Meets the Ground - All Music Review"

The first full-length from Delaware's Braxton Hicks, Where the Sky Meets the Ground, at first seems to be exceedingly gentle to the point of almost evaporating into the ether. Part of the reason has to do with Carrie Baith's voice, an instrument with the lazy charm of Kim Deal.

The band members do not pummel their instruments, nor do they seem particularly angry or out to punctuate an idea with musical aggression. Instead, the music simply wafts out of the speakers demanding to be taken for what it is: tight and involved college pop. A certain degree of discontent is a running theme throughout the album. It is not quite angst, though, nor is it alientation or anger, but a sense of longing and regret. It is like discovering yourself alone on a hazy spring day without knowing how you arrived at that point, contemplative and unsure of yourself.

This excessive gentleness masks some pretty songs, but repeated listenings reveal their inherent beauty. It also reveals an idiosyncratic sense of romance. "Real World" is a paean to the plastic reality seen on the big screen, sort of a love song to television, if you will. Beneath it lies a restless sense of the life that we do exist in, sometimes messy, insecure, and never easy, and ultimately far removed from the neatly wrapped package of the small (or for that matter, big) screen. You can never quite pin down from which direction the band is coming or in which direction they are going.

The lyrics can be elusive to the point that "Sleeping Dog" could be a vengeful song directed at an old boyfriend or girlfriend, or it could simply be a song to a dog. That is part of the fun of the album. It is never in your face, but finally makes the listener pull closer to the speakers, especially when a ballad as soft and wispy as "The Last to Know" inches its way toward your ear. Where the Sky Meets the Ground is like that: a nice surprise that may catch you off guard. - Allmusic


Discography

2019: Extraordinary Girl EP

2018: Betwixt: The Missing Years

2001: Modesty

1998: Where the Sky Meets the Ground

1997: Incognito

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Bio

With their jagged guitar riffs, sweet-and-sour harmonies and Brill Building sensibilities, Braxton Hicks played the role of late ‘90s/aughts alternative rock foot-soldier, playing numerous SXSW showcases, notable clubs such as CBGB's and at one point courted by Ardent Records. Bettie Serveert, Small Factory, Matthew Sweet and Ivy all count as major influences and the band helped define that era's local alternative scene along with The Knobs, The Caulfields, Tisra Til, and Juliet's Wishing Well.

None other than the dB’s Chris Stamey counts as a fan of their release “Where the Sky Meets the Ground,” and an unanticipated 2018 reunion, subsequent opening slot for Matthew Sweet and furious writing sessions preceded their comeback EP, 2019’s well-received “Extraordinary Girl,” further cementing their status as crafters of meticulous, tuneful alternative rock.

Band Members

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