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Band Alternative Rock


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"October 2006: Puppies Music Review"


We’ve all heard of brother and sister bands, but what about cousins? Cousins have an interesting relationship, because they are family and they have that mental connection which creates a sort of creative symbiosis, but they also grew up in different environments and so can challenge each other with new perspectives. That’s exactly the combination that comes across in the music of the band Puppies, started by cousins Joshua Carter and Daniel Agee. Adding record producer Robert Wright with his bass guitar and Christopher McGuire with his drums, the cousins created an alternative rock band, which is doing well in the music scene.

The title of their first EP, and the slogan on their MySpace Page is “outcasts & astronauts.” While at first glance, this may seem like a meaningless phrase, it actually cuts right to the heart of what their music is all about. For that matter, it cuts to the heart of what created alternative rock in the first place. Outcasts are those people who lay on the fringe of society, testing boundaries without regard for what others think about them. Astronauts are a select group of society who test the boundaries of human exploration. The former are mistreated and the latter are revered but both are groups who exist on the outside of the main bulk of society.

The band sums up their belief in the value of the outcast in the chorus of “Trampoline,” singing that you “can’t find your place yet cause you’re jumping on their trampoline, you’d give your all to them, you’d bleed if that would be the means. Maybe the point is you can’t be what they want you to be. You’re going nowhere stuck there jumping on their trampoline.” This conveys the basic idea behind much of the alternative music scene – which you’ve got to do your own thing if you’re going to make a mark on society. You have to be an outcast or an astronaut because they are the ones who push the boundaries.

Puppies pushes those boundaries not by being particularly rebellious – after all, the days when alternative music is cutting edge are gone – but by offering a fresh voice on the scene. Perhaps the unique relationship of cousins contributes to their ability to offer music, which sounds complete without being boring. - Northeast In-Tune Magazine (Kathryn Vercillo, reviewer)


outcasts & astronauts ~ EP (2005)
Sick Machine ~ LP (2007)



Originally from Oxford, Ohio, guitarist Daniel Agee and keyboardist Joshua Carter formed Puppies in Nashville, TN in the summer of 2004.

In 2005 they released their first album, an EP entitled "outcasts & astronauts". It was an amalgamation of dream and emo rock, with influences from groups like Pink Floyd and The Beatles and the modern edge of the Foo Fighters and Radiohead. Their lyrics spoke of outcasts and astronauts, the physical, the metaphysical, unnatural fears and of leaving the weight of the world behind.

In September of 2005 Puppies was ranked one of the top fifteen bands in the Northeast by Billboard Magazine, TAXI and Disc Makers out of over 1000 submissions in the 2005 Independent Music World Series and are included on Disc Makers' IMWS "Heavy Hitters" CD ROM Compilation.

In 2006 Puppies joined forces with drummer extraordinaire Christopher McGuire (also an Oxford native) of the Japanese sensation Quruli, John Vanderslice, Mark Mallman and Kid Dakota, to record their second album, "Sick Machine", released in March of 2007. The new album takes the band's sound to the next level with heavier guitars, lush analog synthesizers and stylish drum work, while still highlighting the lead vocal talents of both Agee and Carter. The release of "Sick Machine" coincided with a performance in Canton, Ohio alongside the Canton Symphony Orchestra.

Puppies is currently recording a new album entitled, "War & Reconstruction", due out in 2009.

"[They] have a clear sense of song structure and delivery...good musical hooks...big lyrical hooks to match and high quality vocals... [they] definitely have [their] own identity amongst all the other stuff that is currently out there." --TAXI