Hinkley
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Hinkley

| INDIE

| INDIE
Band Alternative Americana

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Apr
28
Hinkley @ Parkside Lounge

NYC, New York, USA

NYC, New York, USA

Apr
27
Hinkley @ Village Green

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA

Apr
27
Hinkley @ Jack Sprat

Chapel Hill, NC, North Carolina, USA

Chapel Hill, NC, North Carolina, USA

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Delusions of Adequacy – www.adaquacy.com
I suppose I’ve been a bit spoiled. After living for several years outside of Washington, DC, and then in Denver, Colorado, I’ve come to expect a strong local music scene. So moving to the small upstate city of Rochester, NY, I was a bit disappointed. All I heard about or saw at the clubs were heavy-metal cover bands and hard-rock bar bands. Sure, some of them were probably pretty good, but I was still disappointed.
Slowly, over the few years I’ve lived here, I’ve come to discover that there are a surprising number of talented local Rochester bands. They may not play as many shows at local clubs, and they may be harder to uncover, but the ones I was lucky enough to discover have proved me wrong about my initial opinion of the city. And, just maybe, Hinkley is the cream of the crop.

The six-piece band is a fantastic combination of indie rock in the vein of Pavement or Built to Spill, with hints of more Americana ambitions a la Wilco and Sparklehorse. A nice mix of guitars and piano and assorted instruments, led by Will Veeder’s strong voice (which remind me a bit of Clem Snide’s Eef Barzelay), makes these five songs in the first of a series of EPs extremely strong.

I love the way the album opens up, with some toy piano sounds and gorgeous female vocals before the guitars and drums kick in on “Superman,” taking things into a nicely flowing track with some great edgy guitars. “Cocaine” is more folky, a kind of alt-country vibe with a nice male/female vocal combination. The best song here is the middle track, the upbeat, poppy, incredibly fun “The Queen of May,” which has the best feel of Neutral Milk Hotel and bands of that ilk. The title track is a bit more laid-back, a nice indie-pop song that flirts with an acoustic alt-country flair, and the closer, “Lonesome Whistle,” is incredibly infectious. Upbeat and poppy, the production isn’t as good here, but the vocals are so good and the guitars and rhythm so catchy, that it makes me want to start the EP all over again.

I really, really like this band, and it may almost do Hinkley a disservice by starting this review with the whole ‘local band’ approach. These folks have the talent and uniqueness to go far beyond Rochester. But I hope they will embrace their roots, and one day when they’re playing the big venues in cities around the country, I can say they’re Rochester folks who made good. And I wouldn’t be in the least surprised.
- Delusions of Adequacy – www.adaquacy.com


Mystery and Misery – www.mysteryandmisery.com
…. The final performance of the night was from Hinkley. I have been talking this band up for quite a while now on this website, including them on two mixes, but never have been able to see the band play live. Truthfully, I was half expecting to be unimpressed. The mp3s off their website are great and I have been burned in the past by bands who sound good in the studio but sound horrible live. Hinkley, though, probably sound great no matter where they play. Led by singer and guitarist Will Veeder, the band pounded through their very energetic and intense set. So energetic, that they intentionly spilled off the stage before even playing a note, so I imagine they could move. I was also impressed with how the band played well together. Not one musician stood out more than the others, which is great to see.
The band played both upbeat and slower, ballad type of songs and were joined by Kelli Hicks on a few songs. Although, their mp3s are great, I really think Hinkley was born to play live. And it is a shame that they do not get to perform live more often. Will mentioned that we have to wait until December to hear them play again. I have a hunch that Hinkley is one of those bands that make or save a label, they’re that good.
- Mystery and Misery – www.mysteryandmisery.com


Delusions of Adequacy – www.adaquacy.com
…..But then there came Hinkley, who no doubt is my new favorite Rochester band. Playing for about an hour, Hinkley, one that’s more obvious on the band’s upbeat, rocking songs than the quieter, country-tinged ones, but when he sang with Hicks’ backing him up, the combination – although a bit hard to hear – the combination was perfect.
I likened Hinkley to bands like Neutral Milk Hotel and Built to Spill with a bit of Wilco thrown in, and that combination is suitable to the band’s energetic live show. These guys never stood still, playing wild and obviously having fun. Unfortunately, Hinkley doesn’t play out too often – day jobs and all that – but there’s no doubt I’ll catch the band’s next show, if I can stand waiting until December.y showed me that this is not just a studio band; these guys can rock. Singer Will Veeder has a great voice
- Delusions of Adequacy – www.adaquacy.com


Hinkley - Frail and Poker Faced

The EP for the Rochester, NY band Hinkley is a bargain at $5. You might as well buy it now before they start selling out premier venues and appear on acoustic specials. Hinkley reminds me of the Wrens, writing catchy lyrics while adding a Chapel Hill punch of indie rock. This unassuming band rocks with an untainted energy that when you hear them live, everything but the beer in your hand and the band on stage are insignificant. - jason w. - www.75orLess.com


Number 1 record of 2004 -

Hinkley gets the nod for number one. This band is absolutely amazing. They are playing at the Luna Lounge on January 27th in NYC. If you live in the area, check them out. I recently plugged them at 75 or less. - www.MysteryandMysery.com


Estate Sale coolly exposes a wide variety of musical styles, all or which flow gracefully amongst each other while still maintaining a sound to identify as a band called Hinkley. The Rochester, NY group is fronted by songwriter Will Veeder. This surprisingly sublime collection of songs was recorded with the help of Adam Lasus (Clem Snide, Yo La Tengo). Languid alt. country tunes, with traditional strains, fuse into a kind of highly melodic bruised pop that suggests an appreciation for The Beatles and The Beach Boys. Consider an indie-rock ethos, (ala The Shins and Built To Spill) coupled with an eclectic core of Americana, and its easy to hear how comparisons to Sparklehorse and Wilco might arise. -- Robinson, Miles Of Music (Carbon Records)
- Miles of Music - http://store.milesofmusic.com/Compact_Discs/Hinkley/39588.html


HINKLEY- ESTATE SALE- CARBON- Other than the Goo Goo Dolls (ugh….ok, when they first started out they actually had a kinda cool Ramones sound but what the hell happened ???) Rochester, NY ain’t known for much (and if it is, will someone please tell me ). Then along comes Hinkley….named after either the guy who shot Ronald Reagan (or Jim Hinkley the goofball I went to high school with – I’m guessing the former). The band is led by main guy Will Veedder and ESTATE SALE is full of the kind of melodic Americana that most bands written about in the pages of NO DEPRESSION would kill for. The record starts off with the gentle acoustic of “Hanging Tree” then dives right into the more rockin’/ melodic “Casino” and the record goes back and forth mixing the quieter, gentler tunes with more driving pop tunes. I think my favorite cut is the amazing “Ballerina” with the bouncy piano , jangly guitars and out of nowhere comes this killer blasting trumpet ( some nice trumpet work will always sell daggerboy on a song). Go on and open your door for Hinkley, they might be the best company you’ve ever had. ( www.carbonrecords.com ) - Dagger - http://www.indiepages.com/dagger/reviews


On their third release and second full-length, the Rochester musicians in Hinkley offer a brilliant album of perfectly produced, stylistically diverse pop music that is sure to find widespread appreciation if given the opportunity. If every city has its band of hard-working artists who cause locals to scratch their heads over why the band hasn’t reached worldwide acclaim, Hinkley is Rochester’s act. Almost an all-star cast of local talent – now with singer/songwriter Gregory Paul on guitar and backing vocals – Hinkley has proved with stellar live shows and the release of Estate Sale that there’s no justice in musical popularity.


Mixed in part by Adam Lasus (it-band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Yo La Tengo), Estate Sale shows the band’s penchant for diverse pop styles, adding melancholy country-tinged ballads to upbeat and insanely catchy pop songs. There’s hints of acts from Neutral Milk Hotel and Guided By Voices to Sparklehorse and Clem Snide, and what makes this album work is how well those styles mix. It doesn’t hurt that the five- or six-member line-up is present in each song, with stellar recording allowing even the most subtle of instrumentation to shine, while the focus still remains on frontman Will Veeder’s vocals and the band’s three-guitar approach.


The album opens with the softly strummed country-tinged melancholy of “Hanging Tree,” featuring hints of keys and harmonica to back up Veeder’s emotive vocals and guitar. It leads into one of the band’s most memorably catchy songs, the surprisingly pretty for being so upbeat “Casino,” which bounces along happily along with backing vocals by Stacey Ackerman. From there, the album does a nice job of mixing the slower, more melancholy ballads and the upbeat, catchy pop songs. “Party on the Sun” is a pretty song, with gently picked guitars and a country-styled rhythm, while it’s followed by the can’t-get-it-out-of-your-head “Ballerina,” one of those toe-tapping, head-bobbing pop songs that stick with you for weeks. Local artist Darren Dewispelaere (Veluxe) adds trumpet to the mix for a nice touch.


There’s a few timeless songs here that are sure to end up on some mix CDs. “Where the River Meets the Sea” feels like a timeless country/folk song given a more modern rock approach. “Mary Lincoln” is a pleasantly mid-tempo track, poppy but also nicely restrained and rich with deep bass, piano, and sweet backing vocals. Then you have the brilliantly up-beat and rocking “Build Me Something in the Sky,” filled with edgy guitars and a fast beat contrasted with a sweet chorus. It’s like a cross between Polyphonic Spree and Built to Spill, perhaps. The up-tempo “She Loves the Sun” takes a similar approach for perhaps the most rocking track on the album. And one of the album’s most memorable moments is the glorious “Horse of the Wood,” featuring gorgeous, booming drums, the album’s best vocals, and a deeply emotional feel. That being said, my favorite track here is “Memory in My Heart,” a staple of the band’s live shows, which is incredibly rich in sound and perhaps the band’s most catchy song yet. Even the “ooo-eee-ooo-eee-ooo” from backing vocals feels fitting to this sweet and bouncy pop song, which has surprisingly edgy guitars for being so poppy.


Previous Hinkley releases and incredible live shows convinced me that Estate Sale couldn’t live up to my expectations. I was wrong. This album has been on near constant rotation in my collection, and each listen gives me a new favorite song to hit replay or move into a new playlist. The band spent more than a year working on this release, and it’s evident in the recording quality, the tracking, and the perfect songwriting. This one’s sure to hold a high spot on my best-of lists for 2006, and I couldn’t recommend it any higher.



-Jeff Marsh
06/26/06 - Delusions of Adaquacy - http://www.adequacy.net/review.php?reviewID=7061


(June 15, 2006) — The album as Great Deceiver: Is Hinkley an excellent new local band, or did it just get lucky with Estate Sale? Cast your vote as the Rochester group plays the music from its excellent new album at 10:30 p.m. Friday at Spy Bar, 139 State St.

Estate Sale goes on your shelf right next to a Miami curio named Sam Beam, who records under the name Iron & Wine. It's lo-fi, as in production matters less than capturing a raw, you're-in-the-room feel.

Will Veeder, one-time bassist of the excellent but now-dead local outfit Muler, is handling the lead vocals and guitar. After second guitarist Otto Hauser moved on to join the elegant Philly-based psychedelic-folk group Espers, Veeder didn't lose a string by signing on one of the best players in town, Gregory Paul, who opens at 9:30 p.m. Two guys from Visionstain, guitarist Jona Toll and drummer Charles Leport, are also in the band.

Hinkley was first heard from in 2004 on the brief debut disc, Frail and Poker Faced. While there is an Americana sensibility to the band, it's done in the modern style of acts such as Wilco and Sparklehorse.

Estate Sale sways between the opening creepiness of "Hangman," which draws to a close over a wall of percussion and guitar noise, to the fuzzy XTC/Beatles pop of "Casino." A strong '60s presence lurks in the speakers: Hinkley's exciting "Ballarina" could be Donovan or the Monkees feeding off extra oxygen and the lesser gravitational pull of the moon.

The band dips into speed-jazz instrumentals ("Endless Probe, Secret Result"), zither instrumentals ("Stacy & Will") and abstract lyrics ("All my crazy songs couldn't reach her, she lies in our back yard, we can see her.")

Estate Sale is literally a yard full of odds and ends that fit together with surprising ease. You hate to see promising bands like Muler and Visionstain fall off the scene, but sometimes it yields a really nice opportunity for a band like Hinkley to amble in.

Hinkley makes beautiful, euphoric indie rock with an edge. Now, to prove it's not simply luck, can the band do it again Friday?

By the way, there's also free popcorn.

- Rochester Democrat and Cronicle


HINKELY - Such sweet sounds shouldn't go unnoticed, Formed out of the ashes of pop greats Muler, Hinkley has been crafting undeniably catchy slices of Americana in various garages and bars around town since 2000. But there are subtle touches here that hint at something slightly more musically disruptive lurking below the surface. A couple of recent tracks vaguely recall the early '90s guitar wash and girl-guy vocals of sonic trailblazers like Drop Nineteens, even early My Bloody Valentine.

Residing at Hinkley's core is singer-guitarist-songwriter Will Veeder. His knack for vernacular and ear for orchestration are simply stunning, certainly bigger than these parts typically produce. By surrounding himself with capable musicians (two-thirds of Visionstain and Otto "Sneaky Dragon" Hauser), Veeder's able to actually realize all of his beautiful ideas. And his traditional sensibility keeps things firmly planted, no matter how subversive the undertones. - City Newspaper, Rochester NY


Discography

Estate Sale - 2006 Carbon Records
Frail and Poker Faced EP - 2004 Silverdish Records
Listening For the breathing - 2000 Carbon Records, Rochester, NY

Photos

Bio

Hinkley, formed in 2000, is a Rochester, NY band whose influences run deep in traditional American music but are often likened to contemporary independent artists such as The Shins, Sparklehorse and Wilco.

Formed after another Rochester Band, Muler, was dropped from Dedicated Records in 2000, Hinkley originally started as a recording project consisting of Will Veeder, Sean Leahy (Bass and Drums in Muler) and Stacey Ackerman (Will's wife who provides much needed guidance and background vocals). The output of these early recordings was released later in 2000 under the title "Listening for the Breathing". In an attempt to play the recorded material for a live audience they solicited members of other fine Rochester bands for help. Their first show consisted of Will Veeder - Vocals/Guitar, Sean Leahy - Vocals/Guitar, Jona Toll (Visionstain) - Guitar, Keith Parkins (Quitters,Tiger Cried Beef) - Bass and Charles Leport (Pengo, Visionstain) - Drums.

Sean left the band to raise three boys sometime in 2002. He was replaced by Otto Hauser (Espers). Hinkley recorded a number of songs on their own and put out an E.P. titled "Frail and Poker Faced" in 2004. Otto moved to Brooklyn to play with Espers and was replaced by Matt Brauch (BirdCircuit) who was then replaced by current member Gregory Paul (Autumdivers).

In Spring of 2005 Hinkley started working on their latest CD, Estate Sale, with the help of Adam Lasus (Clap Your Hands and Say Yeah, Clem Snide, Yo La Tengo). Recorded in both Brooklyn and Rochester, the mixing and production duties of the record were split between Adam and Hinkley (Adam mixing half the record remote in Los Angeles and Hinkley mixing the other half in Rochester). Each mix was carefully constructed and well though out, in some cases changes to the arrangement or instrumentation occurred after all the tracks were recorded and mixing was well underway. This approach gives the record a unique feel.

Musically Estate Sale encompasses a wide variety of ideas weaving between country, 60's pop and indie-rock, while still grounded in the distinct sound that has given Hinkley its name. After about a year of recording and mixing Hinkley is excited to be releasing Estate Sale on the Carbon Records Label in spring of 2006.

Upon releasing the record Hinkley plans to play shows targeting the northeast, including Toronto, New York City, Buffalo, Boston as well as their hometown of Rochester, NY