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"New Music Guide 07: Sounds from the Underground"

Towhee - In the way that Death Cab for Cutie's understated rock captures the gloom and beauty of the cold Northwest, Ohio-based Towhee embodies breezy Midwestern suburbia with mellow songs and sounds of Americana garage rock. - Relevant Magazine (Issue 25 | MAR_APR 2007)


indie pop

Towhee illuminates the local music scene with its first full-length disc, “Streetlights.”

“Indie” is the renewed buzz word for wanna-be cool bands, but “indie rock” has kinda lost its fashionability. The biggest bands coming out of the indie fi eld these days have not exactly been head bangers. Enter indie pop band Towhee from Dayton. It slides into the indie pop category through a more melodic, melancholy vein.

Towhee’s vocals are performed by Brandon Clark, with the occasional addition of bass player Sarah Cooney, both with shy voices that almost whisper at times, reluctantly revealing past disappointments, what-could-have-beens and things that just didn’t work out.

The 11 songs on “Streetlights” fl ow together seamlessly, fi tting together like a puzzle — forming an overall personality of someone feeling low. The title track “Streetlights” might be the best single song in the collection and is one of the few energetic songs on this disc. It is also one of the saddest, with lyrics like “I’m prone to push you away, cause I don’t want to have to miss you when you’re gone, it shows in your eyes that it’s near.” This disc feels more like a book with chapters than just a collection of stories. Other single standouts on this consistently solid disc include the opening track “Party” (it can easily hook a new listener), and the disc’s fi nal song, “Now You Know,” in which the middle collapses into a beautiful, aching drone, leaving you wanting more.

For a first full-length disc, the advanced and mature production is very impressive. Complex sound combinations that usually go unnoticed on a rock album, thrive here. The joy that comes from music like this is not short lived. Grade: A

On the Net
• - Greg Lynch / Middletown Journal

"Talents blend to lend polish to towhee"

Friday, May 18, 2007

The roots of local indie- pop quartet Towhee date back to 2002, when guitarist Gerald Fullam joined singer-guitarist Brandon Clark's short-lived hardcore band. When the group dissolved, Clark and Fullam started playing together in an acoustic setting and experimenting with a more refined strain of rock that highlighted Clark's growing melodic sensibilities.

The duo led several other aborted bands before adding Jeremy Tumpak (drums) and Sarah Cooney (bass, vocals, glockenspiel) in early 2005 and changing its name to Towhee. Earlier this year, Towhee self-released its debut full-length Streetlights, the follow-up to a four-song EP from 2006. The 11-song disc was recorded by Brian Whitten of Auburndale at his Self Made Studios in Northridge and sounds as polished and self-assured as any local debut in ages.

"It turned out pretty good," said Fullam, who works for Cox Ohio Publishing doing Web site maintenance. "Brian Whitten is real talented with music. He acted like a creative producer and helped us come up with some additional instrumentation."

Clark is clearly the creative mastermind behind Towhee's catchy songs but the material gains character from Fullam's versatile guitar playing, Tumpak's unconventional drumming and Cooney's distinctive bass lines, vocal work and twinkling glockenspiel.

"I write a big part of the music," Clark said. "I kind of have it all together in my head and then just tell them what to do."

"Most everyone's parts are written by Brandon and then finessed by the individual players," Fullam said. "It's really cool because Brandon writes really good stuff and almost all of the work on there is almost entirely him, aside from us playing and then adding our own unique style."


WHO: Benefit for Peru Mission with Towhee and Cool Hand Luke.
WHERE: First Baptist Church of Kettering, 3939 Swigart Road, Kettering.
WHEN: 7 p.m. Thursday, May 24.
COST: $6.

WHO: Towhee with Toads & Mice and Vanity Theft.
WHERE: The Garage, 550 S. Main St., Springboro.
WHEN: 8 p.m. next Friday.
COST: $7.
MORE INFO: (937) 684-4219, or

CONTACT Thrasher by e-mail at - Don Thrasher / Dayton Daily News

"Towhee: Branding Around Birds"

Monday, 20 November 2006
I didn't know until this interview, all the kinds of towhees that exist, and how many can be found in Ohio. Now, I know this. As we ponder the subject, I wonder if they are trying to trick me into becoming a Towhee fan, by repeating their name over and over.

If so, congratulations guys, I'm a fan. But I think it was the product alone that made me remember Towhee, as a band first, and secondly as a bird. They love to play, and it shows. The show at The Garage 1919 is high-energy. Every other song could be that catchy one that ends up on the radio, or getting downloaded a bazillion times. You know what I mean. Towhee could be big.

We step outside for an interview shot like one of those "That 70s Show" basement scenes. All four are quite adamant about being labeled players of "indie pop." Deathcab and Shins are influences, and usually come up as comparisons. Towhee has been around for about a year, and the plan is for a few, or several, more. They plan on recording more this fall, and maybe even squeezing in another mini-tour sometime soon.

It's a tad difficult for Towhee (talking about the band, here) to get out and about, since they're all in college right now, but the will is there. Last month, they got their first taste of the glamor. In this case, I mean the glamor of long drives and small accomodations on a quickie tour out east. They're pretty down-to-earth, dedicated, and not yet jaded. They seem like they can all stand each other. In fact, they seem like great friends(That can only make your music better). So, it seems they're onto something with this new project, "Towhee." (the band)

Watch the video interview at -


Towhee - EP (2006)
Streetlights (2007)

Tracks that have recieved streaming or radio airplay...

from Towhee - EP:
"Oh I Swear"

from Streetlights:
"Pocket Change"
"This Is Harder Than You Know"
"I'll Fall In Line"



Towhee is a distinctive indie-pop-rock quartet from Dayton , OH. The band is made up of Brandon Clark on guitar/vocals, guitarist Gerald Fullam, Sarah Cooney on bass/vocals, and drummer Jeremy Tumpak. They have been performing in the local circuit since August 2005 drawing crowds with a unique sound-blend of meandering melodic lines and mellow vocals. Towhee's members are also known for their enrapturingly modest charm and entertaining stage presence.