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Monday, September 10, 2007

the world is awaiting

From bassist Bill Baird's blog comes the sad news that Sound Team is officially disbanding. The band will play their final show at ACL on Saturday, so come out and bid them farewell. Fortunately, Bill Baird will continue his always-improving Silent Sunset solo-project. Here's a great new video from Bill, featuring the unreleased "the world is awaiting." (video by Praveen Ayyagari)



****************************************

Also, according to Bill:

"Sound Team's Catalog will be available on our website, completely free, and in high quality digital format. Unreleased material will also be available, including live recordings, radio session, b-sides, and outtakes."

mp3:
Sound Team No More Birthdays (San Francisco Bay)

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29 comments:

Blogger Patrick said...

saddest day of my life. so far.

12:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

depressing

12:12 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

That sucks! They were such a great band!

12:37 PM  
Blogger connor said...

here's to the reverse Pitchfork effect, making and breaking bands since '97.

I was just listening to Movie Monster the other day and thinking how underrated an album it is, and wondering what they were going to do with their next release.

I know I've said it before, but FUCK Marc Hogan. He's utterly fucking clueless. Marc, if you're reading, I hope you're happy.

/rant over.

1:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Poor guys.. I agree - Movie Monster was kinda cool. Pitchfork was way harsh.. Pick on douchebags like Timberlake, dont smear indie kids... oh well..

2:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not to diminish Sound Team, but you've had a pretty good life so far if this is your saddest day. Kudos to you.

2:08 PM  
Blogger Danny said...

Boo-urns

2:28 PM  
Anonymous carlos said...

Movie Monster, more than any other album I can think of, is so unfairly hampered by stupid production choices that it deserves to be re-recorded.

The voices were mixed to sound like a mix between a 8-track recorder and whatever bullshit the guy from Nickelback, Daughtry and every other asshole who is still trying to sound like Eddie Vedder uses.

In theory, no two songs on this album really sound anything like each other - so the fact that everything boringly blends together sonically is really an amazing achievement in shitty engineering.

This is a sad day, they were a band with such strong potential. Either someone in the band was holding them back creatively, or Capitol hooked them up with the absolute wrong person.

That and 3.7 is total bullshit. Pitchfork needs to stop punishing bands for what it deems as pretentiousness. Nearly all the bands we know and love are guilty of some form of it and a perception of it shouldn't be allowed to subtract three whole points from a review.

I remember that before the review was out, I read "Pitchfork review coming soon!" on their official site.

It almost feels like a frat-house egging on a poor geek who rushed for them in order to completely humiliate him at the end for thinking he could fit in.

Fuck this Indie Frat-House mentality.

2:35 PM  
Blogger Sofiblu said...

This is so sad! I wanted to see them last summer, but decided against it last minute, and now... it will never be.
They were an amazing band, Movie Monster is phenomenal. I wish them luck :(

2:57 PM  
Anonymous schreiber's gait said...

Pitchfork is just a pathetic publication, and should be nothing to aspire to. Never have I seen a "media outlet" struggle so hard -- and fail so miserably in doing so -- to recover from the damage one polarizing review inflicted on the site and its reputation.

Shitfork's tone, writing, approach, and all else all shifted when it realized that they were going to cannibalize their clout if they were to continue the shit-talking approach that put them on them on the map to begin with.

Good.

Today, Pitchfork's just a murky bog of talentless hacks and PR-infused newsblips, a desperate, content-hungry yellow rag that, in the end, just sucks worse than it always has. The crap site offers no discourse, no prescient thought, just cheesehouse ego-stroking and endless, indiscernable clutter.

Sad society that we live in where pimpled, poor-postured denizens of purposeless hate-mongering somehow are paid to pretend to be cool.

3:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, Marc Hogan was way off base. I listened to Movie Monster this morning - nothing seriously wrong with it. The title track is even better than I remember, and the album as a whole has got more strengths than weakness. I remember hearing Brian Eno asked about what he thought of Franz Ferdinand and he pointed to their guitars and synthesizers, and then said they needed to concentrate more on the synths. Well, I think Sound Team had going for them (at least for a long time) in the way he probably meant, which is to say I think they did a good job of being a band's band and a popular band and it's a real shame it didn't last long enough to carry over into at least a label-supported sophomore album.

3:14 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

310--what in the world are you talking about? Are you actually saying that Pitchfork's review of Sound Team's album (a pretty boring and piss poor album if you ask me) is what caused their downfall? Like there was such a big backlash against them from, um, sound team fans that it led to a universal loss of credibility? Give me a break.

I agree with you in the sense that Pfork's writing has seriously declined over the past couple of years, and I also agree that they are playing catchup with the blogs these days (as evidenced by the fact that Chris seems to beat them on everything). But I hardly think that fucking sound team had anything to do with this turn of events. There was absolutely NOTHING special about that album, and although it might not have been QUITE as bad as a 3.7, it wasn't much better either.

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sound Team were great marketers...a good live band...but they went for the money and their egos, once they signed with Capitol, inflated into the size of a hot air ballon. Pitchfork was a bit off in their review...no doubt about it. But the album was not that strong either...sorry homies...

3:43 PM  
Anonymous deerhunter said...

This certainly didn't help p4k, and I think this is what 3:10 is getting at:

http://www.slate.com/id/2154469/

Straight from a MUCH more credible publication than Diarrheafork (to continue the fecal-themed name butchering).

The whole Deerhunter thing makes them look like asses, too, and the Slate article predictively touches upon stoolfork's formula:

"Typically—but not always—the big temples are defiled, the blog favorites are knocked down a couple of notches, and bands that Pitchfork has "discovered" are praised unto high heaven"

3:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sound team were incredible for a time and many took note. they blew people's minds. it didn't turn out in their favor -- egos must have gotten in the way -- but they had their time and hopefully won't be forgotten for that.

3:48 PM  
Anonymous matt said...

at least Pitchfork got Strawberry Jam right...

3:55 PM  
Anonymous critic said...

"It is infinitely better not to know anything about art than to have the kind of half-knowledge wich makes for snobbishness. The danger is very real. There are people, for instance, who. . .understand that there are great works of art which have none of the obvious qualities of beauty of expression or correct draughtsmanship, but who become so proud of their knowledge that they pretend to like only those works which are neither beautiful nor correctly drawn, They are always haunted by the fear that they might be considered uneducated if they confessed to liking a work which seems too obviously pleasant or moing. They end by being snobs who lose their true enjoyment of art and who call everything "very interesting" which they really find somewhat repulsive...

To talk cleverly about art is not very difficult, because the words critics use have been employed in so many different contexts that they have lost all precision."

- E.H. Gombrich, 1950

5:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

blogs and online magazines and all of that had nothing to do with it.
they got dropped because the album didn't sell. ego crush=fuck it, i'm done.
if a band doesn't have what it takes they call it quits.
that is what happened.
no minds (interesting minds) were blown away by this band and none are blown away to hear that they didn't have what it took.
bill baird is way more interesting than sound team. and he's not yet very interesting. but, at least he's doing something outside the lines.

now, if the animal collective make a hip-hop record, then chris would be in heaven.

9:04 PM  
Blogger gp said...

thanks for the kind words, guys. And for the less-than-kind words, I'm sorry that we did not please you better. I will say that we really gave it our all, for many impoverished and dedicated and strange difficult fun years of our lives, and we had a great run, and at one point real shot at the ring. And I think we recorded some great songs, and had some great songs that were never successfully recorded, and y'know, had soem real misses in there as well. Fuck, a lot of shit went wrong that nobody will ever know the story of. It definitely wasn't Marc Hogan's fault, or Capitol's fault (though these folks each had their role), but just a function of how hard all this really is to do, and how much sacrifice it requires of those involved (the absolute myth of major-label riches or even sustinence notwithstanding), which is soemthing that many people seem not to understand. For all you anonymous armchair quarterbacks out there slinging kind of glib, gloss verdicts, you may not realize the amount of blood and sweat that goes into these projects (if you did you'd probably evince at least grudging respect for those whose music was not your particular cup of tea). Thankyou very much to all of you who stood with us and propelled us forward lo these many years, you know who you are. I know Bill and Matt each on their own has some very good music in the offing that will be available as soon as they are able to get it out there. I myself have at least a couple of eps in me that I hope will succeed in being interesting to some. It's very nice to hear that some of you care so much. It means a great deal.
Thanks,
Gabe Pearlman

11:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks Gabe, looking forward to hearing your solo stuff.

11:49 PM  
Blogger Dodge said...

hey, that was brave. Bravo.

10:13 PM  
Blogger sam sanford said...

To clarify: Pitchfork's summary of our career - "a brief run in the majors and a handful of releases" - is inaccurate, to put it kindly. Actually, Sound Team was together for more than six years, and we put out two full-length cds, two six-song cassette-only releases, a full-length vinyl-only release, and a cd ep - all before we ever talked to Capitol.
Some more actual facts for those who would like to educate themselves before anonymously posting comments:
We worked very hard for a very long time to share music that we really loved. We never made any money before or after signing with Capitol; we spent tons of our own hard-earned money, and one of us went way into debt, in order to follow this dream. The reason the band broke up had nothing to do with Pitchfork or with Capitol; it also had nothing to do with financial problems (though some of the guys might disagree with me on this); it was a natural consequence of our continuing growth as people and as artists.
I would also like to say that I personally have no use for the unconsidered, ignorant judgments of people I don't know, especially those who are unwilling even to attach a name to their statements. We make music and art because it comes from inside us. I value the tastes and judgments of other artists I admire, of my friends, and to some extent of people who like other things I like - but if I took their judgments into consideration as part of the creative process, it would no longer be an honest expression of my self. I want the people I admire to like what I do, but I have to do what I'm doing whether these people like it or not - that's what makes it art. The opinions of anonymous commenters and of complete strangers who have never actually made anything have absolutely no meaning or value to me, and I believe most musicians and artists feel the same way. Gabe's characterization of you as "armchair quarterbacks" isn't quite appropriate - most armchair quarterbacks have at least played football once or twice in their lives. You are contributing nothing at all to the ongoing group project of creating culture. You are like squawking birds; you are not even speaking our language, you are only making noise. Your flimsy opinions will be carried away by the first breeze, but our creations will be around long after you are forgotten.
I would also like to state some of my own opinions about the merits of Sound Team's discography. (I should make it clear that I was in the band from 2001 to 2006, but I did not write any of the songs.) I think the greatest things Sound Team made were the two cassette-only releases (Yes! and Every Day Is A New Year) and the last release (Empty Rooms/Bedroom Walls 12"). There were some really great songs on Sound Team and Into The Lens, for example "Blindfolded in the City," "Paper Trails," "Jones St. Blues," "Mac 'n' Me," "Life is Rad," and the cover of "Glad Tidings." The problem with Movie Monster was the recording, not the post-production - the performances were mostly lackluster; the mixing engineer did a remarkable job of creating energy with more-or-less lifeless basic tracks. The main reasons the performances weren't that great were that we did too many takes, and not enough live tracking as a band. Leaving in some of the roughness that was completely ironed out in the recording would have improved the album tremendously. The other big reason was that many of the songs were already years old and had already been recorded several times; we were focussed on trying to create canonical versions of songs from the past, but we were no longer the same people we were when those songs were fresh and exciting.
I feel really grateful to all the people who encouraged us, came to our shows, bought our records, and gave us floors to sleep on through the years. I also feel grateful to my bandmates, Bill, Matt, Michael, Jordan, and Gabe, for all their hard work and all the sacrifices they made along the way to keep the crazy train running.
I feel really sad that this dream is over now, but I also feel really excited about the future, for all of us. Each of us will be able to pursue his own inner vision more completely. (Allow me to plug myself, Will, and Bill here.)
Finally, thanks to Gorilla vs. Bear for hosting this discussion.

3:43 PM  
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