Solving For X
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Solving For X

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The best kept secret in music

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"Solving For X"

In their debut album What Planet Are You?, Solving For X managed to accomplish a rare feat in popular music today. The album is another in a long line of post-punk/alternative pop-rock music making, but it actually stands out as unique and provoking. So much of the “new” music that is put out today is so formulaic and stale that I can only listen to it once or twice before I’ve had my fill. However, since I still enjoy quality alternative pop/rock music, when a good album of this nature comes along, I can’t help but get excited. I have to tell you, after listening to What Planet Are You?, I am smiling from ear to ear. With traces of U2 and R.E.M., Solving For X reminds me of why the sound of good alternative rock can be so charming.

Solving For X excels in many different aspects of songwriting and performance. The vocals (Bill Spencer) and guitar (Dave Gee) are good, the lyrics are often very funny and imaginative, and each part works well together, so that the whole is much better than the sum of the parts. However, beyond the effective synergy of elements, the bass (Brian Wheat) particularly stands out. It is not often that the bass is even altogether noticeable in the collage of instrumentation, but Wheat manages to maintain a very essential and foundational presence within the music without ever becoming too overpowering. “Hey Darwin” is a perfect example of the bass on display, demonstrating an impressively clear and bouncy dexterity. In it, Wheat carries much of the melody, later accompanied by guitar. The song also exhibits some of the wittier songwriting in describing Bobby Nance, a “special” kid with some unusual habits: “[He] hides his house key under the big mat, / Just inside the door… Joins the Navy ‘cause he respects that / Captain Kangaroo / Hey Darwin, / what about young Bobby Nance? / Natural Selection never stood a chance. / Hey Darwin, / how’d he manage to advance? / The one exception to your rule, / He’s drowning in his own gene pool, / Let’s throw a line to Robert Allen Nance.”

The best vocals on the album appear on the fourth track, “Eden.” It is very reminiscent of Johnny Rzeznik, but the lyrics are not bogged down by the syrupy quality that dominates much of the Goo Goo Dolls’ music. Spencer performs with excellent range and clarity, singing of “Grooving in a meaningless haze / Live and learn the scars we earn we keep / Moving into meaningful days / Open wide the you, you hide down deep.”

In “Crush,” Solving For X presents a defining song that captures the spirit of the album. From the beginning, the song builds with a palpable tension that continuously hints at the climax to come. Snappy drums and rhythmic guitar gradually crescendo, and at about the 2:30 mark, after ten seconds of a wavering, teasing stall, the vocals and instrumentation all explode into beautiful sonic fusion. The chorus is the sort that gives you chills, and the arrangement of the song is absolutely perfect; it marks a musical intuition that bodes well for Solving For X’s future. If you are looking for a refreshing return to quality pop/rock, What Planet Are You? is sure to satisfy your craving.

- Seth Steiling, CDREVIEWS.com


"Reviews for "Crush""

"Angelic Pop that rivals the best stuff that U2 recorded on "The Joshua Tree"...
- HuskerB from Fort Lauderdale, Florida

"Way to build tension you sexy bastard! Brilliant! Wow!"
- joejacks from New York

"What starts off with a very simple arrangement builds into a veritable wall of sound".
- FBMAustin from Austin, Texas

"Very well produced, showing discipline in your arrangement skills, found usually only on top label productions".
- seventhson from Dallas, Texas

"I really like the feel of this track. I sense some geniune craft in the songwriting"
- BlueBackground from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

"5 STARS, ALL THE WAY!!!"
- bozefactor from Culver City, California

"Seriously -- when he starts to shout, towards the end, I got the shivers"
- indiefox from Owensboro, Kentucky

"Great arangement, great production and songwriting, great performance.."
- Misunderstood98 from Denver, Colorado

"a timeless piece of work..."
- yeahokaymusic from Bellevue, Tennessee

"this is a real strong song great build up feel to it, very rewarding chorus..."
- spark74 from Dublin, Ireland

"I really dug this song... and am adding it to my collection!"
- ShroomDuck from St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

"...I loved this song".
- olsons3 from Eagle Creek, Indiana

"several thumbs up!"...
- PhilipZeplin from Copenhagen, Denmark

"Ecclectic acoustic pop morphing into rock"
- oldguitarguy from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

"This is great material! "
- Taradawn from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

"Stays in the head after the song has ended"
- Peter_GREED from Paris, France


- GarageBand.com


"Reviews for "Hey Darwin""

"Great up-tempo feel good tune".
- sundholm from Los Angeles, California

"I like this song, it just keeps driving, and has an urgency to it".
- Kippster from Portland, Oregon

"Very catchy song that keeps me interested".
- famousshoes from Hereford, Arizona

"Great upbeat sounding rock tune...a really fun track"
- duaneanz from New York

"...a catchy, well done song. Sounds like you guys have fun too...".
- lowlandr from Cumming, Georgia

"VERY COOL! This song got better and better as the song progressed"
- nateb23 from Nashville, Tennessee

"This is something i would listen to again"
- Blackcomedy from Swamp Petersburg, Florida

"This song feels great. Like the peppier mid nineties R.E.M. stuff"
- WaterSchool from Baltimore, Maryland
- GarageBand.com


"Reviews for "Eden""

"This is an excellent song!"
- kramnav from Bruges, West-Flanders, Belgium
"...nice production, Good musicianship, great song!"
- GiasFix from Hollywood, California

"....love the melody...i dig this!"
- Moodshaker from New York City, New York

"Lyrics are awesome .....overall great job. Enjoyed the song a lot".
- awesome0 from Provo, Utah

"I love story telling songs with good music. This one fills the bill to the tee. I like what you do"
- RegOwens from Elberton, Georgia

"...cool..lots of energy...good lyrics, great vocals...good stuff"
- jimirezin from Houston, Texas

"Cool 80's vibe...smiths, cure feeling. I like the line "Dragons, kings, and all the things they say".
- WaterSchool from Baltimore, Maryland

"Right away I could find myself falling deep in trance with this song. Good sound"
- AcousticAbuse from Dundee, Illinois

"An excellently produced track, with every band member playing well, and a good singer"
- LemonadeJoe from Cambridge, Cambs, United Kingdom

"The lyrics are great - very poetic"
- kristilyn from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

"What a great flow. Lyrics are cool. Fun melodic melody"
- Handfed from Toronto, Ontario, Canada

"The melody sticks after the song is over"
- grandpa50 from Kittredge, Colorado - GarageBand.com


Discography

LP-"What Planet Are You?"

Now available at iTunes Music Store, Yahoo Music Unlimited, MSN Music, Amazon.com, Tower Records, and CD Baby.

Tracks:
1. Crush
2. Hey Darwin
3. Young
4. Eden
5. The Onceler
6. What Planet Are You?
7. Good Things
8. Figure It Out
9. Shame On Me
10. Silverman

All songs ©2004 Solving For X
Except "Good Things" ©2004 Spencer, Gee, Wheat, Hannon

Bill Spencer - vocals, piano
David Gee - guitars
Brian Wheat - bass

Additional Musicians:
Devon Ashley - All drums except "Young"
Lon Paul - Drums on "Young"
Andy Fry - Percussion.

Produced by Andy Fry and Solving For X
Recorded at Queensize Studios
Mixed at Echo Park
Mastered by Roger Siebel at SAE Mastering

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

"When a good album of this nature comes along, I can’t help but get excited..." Seth Steiling, CD Reviews.

SFX Latest News:

- "Hey Darwin" has been selected as track of the day on Garageband on May 28. This feel good hit of the summer is now getting airplay on over 15 radio stations across the U.S.

- Solving for X is booked as the national headliner for Walleye Weekend on June 11 in Fond du Lac Wisconsin. This three day event attracts over 100,000 visitors each year, making it the second largest festival in held in Wisconsin.

- "What Planet Are You?" digital downloads are now available at iTunes Music Store, Yahoo Music, and MSN Music. CD's are available at CD Baby, Amazon.com and Tower Records.

BIO:

SOLVING FOR X formed in Indianapolis as a result of two existing yet separate friendships of bassist Brian Wheat. Vocalist Bill Spencer and guitarist David Gee were introduced in the basement of Brian's home in early December, 1999 and developed their sound playing cover songs of classic alternative songs such as Modern English's "Melt with You", REM's "Radio Free Europe", and The Violent Femmes' "Add It Up".

The band began writing thier own material in early 2003. Their impressive debut LP entitled "What Planet Are You?" was released in late 2004 and is quickly becoming a favorite among those who appreciate the "college rock" of the early 80's.

Touring in support of thier new album, Solving For X is quickly building a sizeable and rabid fanbase.
Joining popular 80s revivalists like Interpol, The Shins, and The Killers, Solving For X is helping to bring the sounds of the 80s back to modern music . This Indy-based quartet cites The Cure, XTC, REM, and The Violent Femmes, among others, as the inspiration for their own sound, a renewal of 80s "college rock."

At GarageBand.com, the world's largest website featuring independent music, SOLVING FOR X first single, "Crush", rifled past 22,000 songs to reach the top 1% of sites enormous catalog of pop/rock tunes. Other songs have performed impressively as well on GarageBand.com, winning 5 Reviewers Picks Awards including Best Bass, Grooviest Rhythm and Best Dance Track for "Hey Darwin", Best Beat for "Crush", and Best Feel Good Track for "Young".

At cdreviews.com, one of the most visited and highly regarded music review sites on the Internet, Seth Steiling writes: "In their debut album 'What Planet Are You?', Solving For X managed to accomplish a rare feat in popular music today...it actually stands out as unique and provoking" Seth hails the album, highlighting "Crush" as a defining song: "The chorus is the sort that gives you chills, and the arrangement of the song is absolutely perfect; it marks a musical intuition that bodes well for Solving For X's future".

SOLVING FOR X is getting attention from Internet radio as well, including Pulver Radio, an independent radio station that streams their live show on the Internet to a global audience. "Pulver Radio's soul purpose is to showcase great bands and great music", says Michael McClenathan, the station's program director, "Solving For X addition to the Pulver Radio playlist is a very good one".