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"Soundcheck Magazine reviews The High End"

Well I know Din means “a loud continued noise” but really I think the band is selling themselves short if that’s what they think they are. After all, how can dreamy vocals such as those of co-lead vocalist and bassist Carlene Barous fronting alternative pop/rock songs or even the quirkier rockin’ feel of the other lead vocalist and guitarist Glenn Steedman’s songs be considered “noise.” No way. Din blend both vibes into one resulting in a seven-song collection that I admit took more than one listen before I “got” their groove – but once I did, I found myself latching onto their harmonic modern pop sound. Alluring, while holding their own as rockers, I’d like to see what a live show holds (note to Bob Palumbo – yeah, yeah, I know I had a chance and JUST missed one of your best shows! Next time…!). Oh and this was produced by Sir David Minehan at Wooly Mammoth Studios – a credit that always makes me pick up a CD to review.
- Debbie Catalano
- Soundcheck Magazine

"Boston Groupie News reviews The High End"

The editor of the Boston Groupie News sent me this gem. I'd avoided listening to it at first because with a name like Din I was expecting to endure some face-melting, ear-bleeding noise ala the dreaded Slick Pig or Government Dictatorship. Din turns out to be a very catchy pop-rock band featuring dreamy-voiced Carlene Barous (also on keyboards and bass) showcasing plenty of strong material all expertly captured on disc by David Minehan. Carlene floats her melodies over tight hooky backings on "I'll Find a Way" and "I Want You". Co-writer, singer Glenn Steadman ( also on bass and guitars) keeps things edgy, executing his very convincing baritone Iggy vocal track on "Crazy". Expert drummer John Gulizia ( ex- Moving Targets) and rocking guitarist Bart Lo Piccolo (ex- Scatterfield) complete the quartet.
These Boston players all have straight-ahead punkrock in their blood but now they have chosen to slide sideways into this groovy sounding Din territory.
The smooth sounding 7 song collection was recorded and mixed in Boston at Mr. Minehan's Wooly Mammoth Studios with mastering done by Colin Decker at M Works in Cambridge. Don't miss this one.
Cowboy's Picks To Click: I'll Find A Way, Crazy, Hung, I Want You, The Fall
Cowboy Score: 845
- Boston Groupie News

"The Noise Boston reviews live Din (Jan. 15, '05)"

Din at The Overdraught Pub, Cambridge, Mass., on January 15, 2005 (with The Prime Movers). The greatest strength of this band is their eclecticism, if you're willing to bear with them, as I am. This is on display in their very first song, a new one that repeatedly shifts sound and mood between a tuneful indie rocker and a slinky, almost Latin vibe. The same shifting dynamic operates on a slightly broader scale across their set: Carlene plays keyboard on about half their songs, and these are more delicate and nuanced numbers, with pretty piano lines. Then she'll switch to bass, and a second guitar will be added into the mix. These songs are more muscular, with the addition of a rhythm guitar freeing the lead guitar player to employ a flashier, more dynamic style. With good male and female singers trading leads and lovely harmonies, it makes for a set that never gets boring. - Steve Gisselbrecht

"Boston Phoenix interviews Din"

Interview in The Boston Phoenix, December 18, 2003, by Brett Milano: There was a time when Carlene Barous had no desire to step on stage. Her older sister Terri was the keyboardist in the popular local band Tribe, and she figured that one rocker in the family was enough. "Then Tribe disbanded and I thought, ‘Oh no. I don’t get to live vicariously anymore! Now I have to find something to do with my rock thing.’" She’s since become a member of the Paula Kelley Orchestra, where her keyboards and back-up vocals are a feature of the lush arrangements. But she’s also played for the past few years in the punk-pop band Din, who released their seven-song disc The High End this month on their own label. Anyone who loves the blend of tough guitars and ethereal melody should be attracted right away. With Barous and guitarist Glenn Steadman splitting the songwriting and ex-Neighborhoods leader David Minehan handling the production, it’s loud and emotive with gorgeous hooks. Although she’s a life-long Bostonian, Barous’s vocals have a touch of vintage California pop about them, and the romantic exuberance makes the opening "I’ll Find a Way" a grabber. "That’s the first song I ever wrote," she notes over the phone from Paris, where she’s on a business trip for the biotech company she works for. Although Din have a previous full-length disc, she didn’t write or sing lead on it; this time she gets four of the seven songs. "When I joined the band, I just wanted to play bass and be the background person - I auditioned and they accepted me, even though my playing was worse than shite. Writing songs probably came out of frustration - I sat down at the piano and came up with some chords that sounded lovely to me, and I had to find a way to bring that to the band." On one of her other tunes, she did let slip a lyric reference - "Thank you, Mr. Grieves" - that reveals her love for the Pixies. "Yeah, Glenn heard that and said, ‘You’re in trouble, you just plagiarized the Pixies.’ Which I probably did, but it was subconscious. I was probably saying something like, ‘Be grateful for your despair.’" The occasional Tribe resemblance is also hard to miss, not least because there are two Tribe sibs in the band (guitarist Bart LoPiccolo’s brother Greg was also a Tribe member). "If there was any influence on me, it came from adoring the fact that Terri got as far as she did. I started playing classical piano when I was seven, but I was never a frustrated rock musician or anything like that. It only started coming out when I hit that Britney Spears age - not a girl and not a woman." - Brett Milano

"South of Mainstream reviews The High End"

The Website publication South of Mainstream gave Din a review in March, 2004 - check it out!: If you're in your early thirties, like me, you might remember the early 90's, spent in dorm rooms or cheap student apartments, surrounded by friends while you listened to and discussed music. It was the time of the Breeders, Veruca Salt and rise and swell of Nirvana. Din's The High End reminds me of those college evenings, when we had time to really listen to the music. It's quite listenable and pleasant in a very nostalgia inducing fashion, despite its lack of real groundbreaking sound. Reminding folks of their late youth can't be bad, and Din delivers. The album kicks in with I'll Find A Way a track quite reminiscent of early Veruca Salt. The female vocals and the energetic guitar add to the resemblance, but there's also the same energetic pacing. The vocals still remind me of Veruca Salt on the second track, Hung, but the musical style takes a turn toward the power ballad. Although there's a definite early 90's modern rock vibe, there are also moments of older influence, bringing to mind Husker Du, and Bob Mould's later work with Sugar and as a solo artist, as well as a bit of the dark drama of the Jesus & Mary Chain. This is most definitely apparent when the male vocalist adds his spin on the third track, Genuine. The only tune that seems out of place is Crazy which for some strange reason comes across like a missing cut from a Dire Straits album. This is a recording that should appeal to those who listened to music, both truly indie and radio friendly in the early to mid-nineties. It has the punch of the time, and will bring a nostalgic smile to your face.
- South of Mainstream Webzine

"The Noise Boston reviews live Din (May 25, '04)"

Din at TT the Bear's Place in Boston, May 25, 2004: Din are next, and they're like a completely different band than the other time I saw them. (They do have a different drummer.) I remember them being somewhat simple and heavy, so where did all this tunefulness come from? The songs are catchy and beautifully sung; the closest touchstone I can come up with is Luna. The band plays with several different configurations, switching in keyboards, and three different members play bass on various songs. I like the two-guitar configuration best, for the great leads, with beautiful tone and smoking wah-wah action, but there's also a song late in the set with a gorgeous piano part. Several of these songs are new, and I love them; I heartily approve of this band's vector. - Steve Gisselbrecht

"The Noise Boston reviews Longhair Music (March 2006)"

Longhair Music
10 songs
Longhair Music, Din’s third release, is reinforcement that one must diligently revisit music that one has previously dismissed. Five years ago I thought the band, then a plodding and hackneyed trio, was aptly named. But from the first track, “Fly on the Wall,” it’s clear that something is different. A bold, tight rock song packed with heavy guitar, potent vocal harmony and hooks leads the way through a CD that’s powerfully built, replete with explorations into piano wizardry in the quieter songs, killer guitar lines in the heavier songs and pleasing hooks in the pop songs. The stylistic gymnastics bring to mind influences as diverse as Bad Company, The Breeders (“Grable”) and Crash Test Dummies (“I Walk Alone”). Standouts are the crunchier, edgier “Devil’s Advocate” and “Lady Killer,” which churn and roll with gale-force rhythm and swirling distortion. Very cool. A nice new CD from an evolving band. (Lexi) - The Noise Boston

"Brett Milano reviews Longhair Music (Apr. 2006)"

*** ½ Din, LONGHAIR MUSIC: If you've seen Din play clubs, odds are you've been both impressed and confused: Few other local bands do lush piano ballads and heavy guitar rock in the same set; or feature both an ethereal female singer and a gutsy male one. On their third release, Din have enlisted producer David Minehan to make sense of their wide-ranging ideas, and come up with a unified album that honors the local tradition of edgy/brainy pop from the Cars to Tribe (two Tribe members' younger sibs play in Din; and "Funny Man" finds them channeling Tribe's sound). There's still a lot of stylistic ground covered - the opening "Fly on the Wall" is all guitars and testosterone, while the closing "Stoned" could be Kate Bush fronting Pink Floyd - but Minehan helps them get a consistent sound; partly by having singers Glenn Steadman and Carlene Barous make cameos on each other's tunes; they also play out a tense male/female dialogue on "Lady Killer." The guitar sound is just tough enough to avoid overwhelming the melodies; and singer/keyboardist Barous remains the obvious focal point. Her sly and catchy "Grable" would be an obvious radio hit if it were longer than 1:13. And when she slips into heartbroken mode on "Angel," she sounds like one of those mysterious women that Ric Ocasek was always writing songs about. - The Boston Phoenix, April 13, 2006


Title Longhair Music, LP, released Dec. '05
The High End, EP, released Dec. '03
Oleo, LP, released Jan. '01


Feeling a bit camera shy


Din was formed in early 2000 as a trio and included Glenn Steadman (Urban Squirrel) on guitar, John Gulizia (Moving Targets; The Feel) on drums, and Carlene Barous on bass. Glenn, John and Carlene recorded their debut album, Oleo, at New Alliance Studios in Boston in 2001 with producer Eric Brosius (Tribe). In 2002 Din acquired rock guitarist Bart LoPiccolo (Scatterfield) and in 2003 went into the studio again to record their second album The High End, a 7-song EP produced by Dave Minehan. This album showcased Din's evolving style which departed from its much loved rip-your-head-off punk pop, and introduced a rock pop feel driven by keyboards, crunchy guitars, and a focus on Carlene and Glenn vocal leads and harmonies. In June 2004, Din added new drummer Bob Palumbo (Four on the Floor, The Still). Bob enabled Din's two primary songwriters, Glenn and Carlene, to prepare and deliver brand new material to live audiences, drawing on both the Oleo and The High End styles. Din's live performances are schizophrenically appealing - listeners hear the eclectic product of punk, rock, and pop colliding. Glenn's songwriting evokes X and Iggy Pop with his simple straight catchy alt rock. Carlene's songwriting is more swirly AM radio, motown meets a nor'easter, Sheryl Crow joins Lush. Bart's nascent songwriting career so far had produced classic rawk vibrations. And you're not in Bad Company (his muse), because Bart provided two major tracks to Din's latest effort Longhair Music, release on December 17, 2005. Longhair Music is a full length LP featuring 10 diverse but beautifully, dinfully coordinated songs. The first track, Fly On The Wall, penned by Bart with lyrics by Glenn, is also featured on the RedOctane/Harmonix PlayStation2 video game called Guitar Hero. Longhair Music was also produced by David Minehan who managed to elicit performances from Din that truly represent this unique unit. Various styles of music connect somehow a la Fleetwood Mac in a compact rush of a cd. Worth the mania.