murmur
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murmur

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Band Alternative Pop

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Sep
27
murmur @ The Oregon Express

Dayton, Ohio, USA

Dayton, Ohio, USA

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Music

Press


By Kris Neises | Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 10:52 AM

As I was driving to Canal Street Tavern to see more of the first round of the Dayton Band Playoffs, I heard on
WYSO that the moon would be a full moon and that it would sit lower in the sky than it has in 18 years. I took
that as a good sign and entered the bar energized and clear headed.

Clear headed, however, was not the appropriate state of mind to be in when I witnessed the tie-dye wearing jam band, The Sandals. This 4-piece, that included guitar, bass, keyboard, and drums, some how managed to fill 55 minutes by playing only three songs. There is something to be said for that, because that is what jam music is all about. The Sandals were talented musicians, but vocally they were goofy and range-less. They played a funk filled rhythm with blues leads. The five string bass broke through to single handedly carry the music. Meanwhile the lead guitar made the melody and with every bent note the guitarist made a face looking like Robert Dinero before he bashes someone's head in. The highlight for me came when during their second
song, entitled The Sandals Song, the drummer mixed in my favorite percussion instrument, the cowbell.

The Turkish Delights took the stage and reconnected me with reality with short, one to two minute long
smart-pop songs. With Genius written in black marker on the inside of his left forearm the main front man and
his brother performed thoughtful love and out of love songs. They began with a mix of a rainbow strapped
acoustic and an old violin instrumental. Then kept the same format spouting lines like "I thought about the things I'd like to say to you, but never do." The singer was charismatic in an awkward way by the
movement of his eyebrows up and down to the melody and his original style of playing with words like a younger and more articulate Colin Meloy. My favorite song was a stripped down pop song, I'll call Rabbits, that
began with the line "lets pretend were bloody rabbits and do it all day long."

The final act of the evening were the kings of harmonizing, Murmur. These guys play really fun pop music and
stand out from the crowd by bringing back a lost art form, harmonizing vocals. On most songs they effectively
used three guitars, bass and drums while occasionally throwing in the keys and a slide guitar for a bit of twang.
Their first two songs were upbeat pop songs full of hooks, harmonies, and power chords. However,, their slower
and less interesting piano-pop lost me briefly. The band ended strong knocking out pop hits with clever hooks like "innocent by-standing casually." I overheard someone say they saw these guys in last year's
playoffs and that they were impressed by their improvement. But, having not seen them last year, I could only
be impressed.

I left thinking it had been another fun-filled night of music, and as I drove home blinded by the moon I felt good about the band I circled, The Turkish Delights. They got my vote because they were the type of weird and interesting band that one could find in my cd collection. - daytondailynews.com


By Kris Neises | Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 10:52 AM

As I was driving to Canal Street Tavern to see more of the first round of the Dayton Band Playoffs, I heard on
WYSO that the moon would be a full moon and that it would sit lower in the sky than it has in 18 years. I took
that as a good sign and entered the bar energized and clear headed.

Clear headed, however, was not the appropriate state of mind to be in when I witnessed the tie-dye wearing jam band, The Sandals. This 4-piece, that included guitar, bass, keyboard, and drums, some how managed to fill 55 minutes by playing only three songs. There is something to be said for that, because that is what jam music is all about. The Sandals were talented musicians, but vocally they were goofy and range-less. They played a funk filled rhythm with blues leads. The five string bass broke through to single handedly carry the music. Meanwhile the lead guitar made the melody and with every bent note the guitarist made a face looking like Robert Dinero before he bashes someone's head in. The highlight for me came when during their second
song, entitled The Sandals Song, the drummer mixed in my favorite percussion instrument, the cowbell.

The Turkish Delights took the stage and reconnected me with reality with short, one to two minute long
smart-pop songs. With Genius written in black marker on the inside of his left forearm the main front man and
his brother performed thoughtful love and out of love songs. They began with a mix of a rainbow strapped
acoustic and an old violin instrumental. Then kept the same format spouting lines like "I thought about the things I'd like to say to you, but never do." The singer was charismatic in an awkward way by the
movement of his eyebrows up and down to the melody and his original style of playing with words like a younger and more articulate Colin Meloy. My favorite song was a stripped down pop song, I'll call Rabbits, that
began with the line "lets pretend were bloody rabbits and do it all day long."

The final act of the evening were the kings of harmonizing, Murmur. These guys play really fun pop music and
stand out from the crowd by bringing back a lost art form, harmonizing vocals. On most songs they effectively
used three guitars, bass and drums while occasionally throwing in the keys and a slide guitar for a bit of twang.
Their first two songs were upbeat pop songs full of hooks, harmonies, and power chords. However,, their slower
and less interesting piano-pop lost me briefly. The band ended strong knocking out pop hits with clever hooks like "innocent by-standing casually." I overheard someone say they saw these guys in last year's
playoffs and that they were impressed by their improvement. But, having not seen them last year, I could only
be impressed.

I left thinking it had been another fun-filled night of music, and as I drove home blinded by the moon I felt good about the band I circled, The Turkish Delights. They got my vote because they were the type of weird and interesting band that one could find in my cd collection. - daytondailynews.com


By Kris Neises | Monday, July 24, 2006, 11:45 PM

The division between Murmur and Smokey Basement Project was obvious both in musical styles and among
their fans. Half the bar was overwhelmingly rooting for the pop quintet, Murmur, and the other half for the acoustic trio, Smokey Basement Project. It was like a line was drawn down the middle of Canal Street Tavern
as the two acts fought it out to be the last band to join the third round of the Dayton Band Playoffs.

Murmur drew first blood by beginning the night with a couple hard hitting upbeat originals including the first song
the band had ever written, Stop Light. Next the band played back-to-back rock covers, Surgical Focus by
Guided by Voices and Sick Of Myself by Matthew Sweet. Both were done very close to the original recording,
but it was weird to see a GBV song live played by sober musicians. Murmur's music can be described by two words, hooks and harmonizing. The band lives on great pop-hooks sung in harmony by the goofy falsetto guitarists and the smooth front man. A happy, 4/4 bass and a sonic, metal-faced drummer held the rhythm together. The songs were then kept interesting by the thick rimmed lead player who's hands changed between a beautiful Stratocaster, banjo, and lap-slide guitar.

Murmur was very rehearsed and professional onstage leaving very little time between songs for the audience to wonder away. The crowd reacted best to there more up tempo songs, and seemed to waver on the slower,
sweet songs. My favorite song was the fun piano-pop song that included the hook "not gonna call you back/
just wanna get you in the sack." My least favorite was the out of place White Stripes cover.

When it was Smokey Basement Project’s turn to play the crowd was already warmed up and a little rowdy.
They reacted loudly to each twangy note the band played with supportive yelling, whistling, â€oeooo’s,â€
and â€oeahhh’s.â€

The SBP is just three guys pickin’ and grinin’ with a couple acoustics, an electric bass, and a mandolin.
Their songs are musically buoyant, but lyrically a little angry. The young cargo pants and gold chain wearing
singer sang partly pretentious lines like â€oethrow me a punch/ask for a kick,†and â€oeyou use that same old
bullsh** to only profit share.†However on songs like Only Cries his voice turned slightly compassionate and socially understanding as he sang awareness for â€oethe world we live in.†These guys are very musically
talented and showed it best on the instrumental Double D. The crowd favorite, Goddamn DUI, and had their fans singing along and dancing in front of the stage.

Being slightly partial to pop music I would have voted for Murmur. But, for those of you who love quick-fingered
blues and acoustic musicianship, then Smokey Basement Project was a good choice. - daytondailynews.com


By Kris Neises | Monday, July 24, 2006, 11:45 PM

The division between Murmur and Smokey Basement Project was obvious both in musical styles and among
their fans. Half the bar was overwhelmingly rooting for the pop quintet, Murmur, and the other half for the acoustic trio, Smokey Basement Project. It was like a line was drawn down the middle of Canal Street Tavern
as the two acts fought it out to be the last band to join the third round of the Dayton Band Playoffs.

Murmur drew first blood by beginning the night with a couple hard hitting upbeat originals including the first song
the band had ever written, Stop Light. Next the band played back-to-back rock covers, Surgical Focus by
Guided by Voices and Sick Of Myself by Matthew Sweet. Both were done very close to the original recording,
but it was weird to see a GBV song live played by sober musicians. Murmur's music can be described by two words, hooks and harmonizing. The band lives on great pop-hooks sung in harmony by the goofy falsetto guitarists and the smooth front man. A happy, 4/4 bass and a sonic, metal-faced drummer held the rhythm together. The songs were then kept interesting by the thick rimmed lead player who's hands changed between a beautiful Stratocaster, banjo, and lap-slide guitar.

Murmur was very rehearsed and professional onstage leaving very little time between songs for the audience to wonder away. The crowd reacted best to there more up tempo songs, and seemed to waver on the slower,
sweet songs. My favorite song was the fun piano-pop song that included the hook "not gonna call you back/
just wanna get you in the sack." My least favorite was the out of place White Stripes cover.

When it was Smokey Basement Project’s turn to play the crowd was already warmed up and a little rowdy.
They reacted loudly to each twangy note the band played with supportive yelling, whistling, â€oeooo’s,â€
and â€oeahhh’s.â€

The SBP is just three guys pickin’ and grinin’ with a couple acoustics, an electric bass, and a mandolin.
Their songs are musically buoyant, but lyrically a little angry. The young cargo pants and gold chain wearing
singer sang partly pretentious lines like â€oethrow me a punch/ask for a kick,†and â€oeyou use that same old
bullsh** to only profit share.†However on songs like Only Cries his voice turned slightly compassionate and socially understanding as he sang awareness for â€oethe world we live in.†These guys are very musically
talented and showed it best on the instrumental Double D. The crowd favorite, Goddamn DUI, and had their fans singing along and dancing in front of the stage.

Being slightly partial to pop music I would have voted for Murmur. But, for those of you who love quick-fingered
blues and acoustic musicianship, then Smokey Basement Project was a good choice. - daytondailynews.com


By Kris Neises | Thursday, November 2, 2006, 08:02 PM

In 2005 the Dayton rock band, Murmur, backed off of their busy show schedule to enter the studio and record their debut cd. However, in the mists of recording the band experienced a slight problem with their rhythm section. The problem was they could not find a reliable drummer.

Since the formation of the band two years ago, the stool behind the drum kit has been occupied by five different sets of sticks. This inconsistency on the drums stopped the recording process 7 songs into the new
cd and sidelined the band for the first half of this year.

But Murmur is finally ready to make their return to the Dayton Scene. The band’s lineup is complete with the
addition of Shawn Cruze, former drummer of the Cincinnati band, The Hinges. Cruze joins Chad Kouse (vocals, guitar, key), Sam Haschke (rhythm guitar), Nakesha Volk (bass), and Tim Staley (lap steel guitar, banjo).

With Cruze the band believes they are ready to finish the album (due out early next year) and fill the streets of
Dayton with the harmonious and catchy indie-pop that Murmur is known for.

The band is performing on Saturday, November 4th at the Oregon Express. The show starts at 9pm, but get
there early because Murmur plays first. The bill also includes two other top local bands, Sleepybird and The Bull and the Bear.

I got to chat with Murmur about their "rise from the ashes," and here is what they said.

KN - Will this be your first show with Shawn on Drums?

CK - Yes this is Shawn's first show with us. It feels like were starting fresh. But the entire show on
Saturday will be great. Sleepybird and The Bull and The Bear are very good bands and were excited to be
playing our first show back with them. Oh and Nakesha is going to play topless and that alone is worth the
cover.

KN - You say on your website that "Murmur is rising from the ashes," explain?

TS - Yea, were like a cockroach; you can't kill us. The past year we have just been hiding out working on
an album. I think we were gone for so long that it may have seemed like we went away, but now we have Shawn
on drums and were back.

KN - I got to see you guys in the Dayton Band Playoffs this past summer and on this blog some of your fans expressed that you guys were eliminated too early because people voted for their friends and not the best
band. Do you agree?

CK - Yea, we agree. But, we knew what we were getting ourselves into.

SH - Yea, we play from the heart. We can't play a 100 percent cover shows (like some of the playoff
bands). As an original band it may take a little longer to gain a following, but the fans you get will stick around.
I would rather play a show in front of 5 or 6 people who love our original music rather than a whole bar full of
people who want to hear us play other people’s songs.

Visit www.murmurband.com for more info and podcasts. - daytondailynews.com


By Kris Neises | Thursday, November 2, 2006, 08:02 PM

In 2005 the Dayton rock band, Murmur, backed off of their busy show schedule to enter the studio and record their debut cd. However, in the mists of recording the band experienced a slight problem with their rhythm section. The problem was they could not find a reliable drummer.

Since the formation of the band two years ago, the stool behind the drum kit has been occupied by five different sets of sticks. This inconsistency on the drums stopped the recording process 7 songs into the new
cd and sidelined the band for the first half of this year.

But Murmur is finally ready to make their return to the Dayton Scene. The band’s lineup is complete with the
addition of Shawn Cruze, former drummer of the Cincinnati band, The Hinges. Cruze joins Chad Kouse (vocals, guitar, key), Sam Haschke (rhythm guitar), Nakesha Volk (bass), and Tim Staley (lap steel guitar, banjo).

With Cruze the band believes they are ready to finish the album (due out early next year) and fill the streets of
Dayton with the harmonious and catchy indie-pop that Murmur is known for.

The band is performing on Saturday, November 4th at the Oregon Express. The show starts at 9pm, but get
there early because Murmur plays first. The bill also includes two other top local bands, Sleepybird and The Bull and the Bear.

I got to chat with Murmur about their "rise from the ashes," and here is what they said.

KN - Will this be your first show with Shawn on Drums?

CK - Yes this is Shawn's first show with us. It feels like were starting fresh. But the entire show on
Saturday will be great. Sleepybird and The Bull and The Bear are very good bands and were excited to be
playing our first show back with them. Oh and Nakesha is going to play topless and that alone is worth the
cover.

KN - You say on your website that "Murmur is rising from the ashes," explain?

TS - Yea, were like a cockroach; you can't kill us. The past year we have just been hiding out working on
an album. I think we were gone for so long that it may have seemed like we went away, but now we have Shawn
on drums and were back.

KN - I got to see you guys in the Dayton Band Playoffs this past summer and on this blog some of your fans expressed that you guys were eliminated too early because people voted for their friends and not the best
band. Do you agree?

CK - Yea, we agree. But, we knew what we were getting ourselves into.

SH - Yea, we play from the heart. We can't play a 100 percent cover shows (like some of the playoff
bands). As an original band it may take a little longer to gain a following, but the fans you get will stick around.
I would rather play a show in front of 5 or 6 people who love our original music rather than a whole bar full of
people who want to hear us play other people’s songs.

Visit www.murmurband.com for more info and podcasts. - daytondailynews.com


Discography

First LP is set to be released late-2008.
Tracks from the album streaming on www.antipopradio.com

Photos

Bio

With scenes that seem taken from "This Is Spinal Tap" and the book of Genesis, murmur has had more than its share of drama in just a few short years of existence.

The foundation of murmur was formed in spring of 2004 with Chad Kouse (Plain City Jumpers), Sam Haschke (DST) and Nakesha Volk meeting through an online ad. Two drummers had already come and gone by the time Tim Staley (Abbington) was added as a rhythm guitarist and connoisseur of things that make noise in spring of 2005. Three more drummers passed through the ranks before Dave Pope joined on drums and once again made murmur whole.

The revolving drum seat had already put murmur's debut album far behind schedule when a Chad's basement, which also doubled as the studio and practice space, was flooded with over ten inches of water. In spite of most of the bands instruments being in the basement at the time (and at floor level) there was only some minor loss of gear. Most importantly, the computer hard drives containing all the masters of the songs completed up to that point were salvaged.

With all of this drama well behind them murmur is stronger than ever, bringing their own unique brand of indie pop/rock to Dayton and beyond.