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Chris Richards and the Subtractions | Sad Sounds of the Summer

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Jason Falkner Marshall Crenshaw Tommy Keene

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Pop: Power Pop Pop: Jangle Pop Moods: Mood: Upbeat
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Sad Sounds of the Summer

by Chris Richards and the Subtractions

If you dig Falkner, Sweet, Keene, or any of the other giants of the power pop continuum, you need to seek this record out
Genre: Pop: Power Pop
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. I Can\'t Quit Her
2:56 $0.99
2. Consolation
3:59 $0.99
3. I, Miss July
4:24 $0.99
4. Sunny Day
3:32 $0.99
5. Oh Canada (Pt Deux)
3:16 $0.99
6. Take It From Me
5:03 $0.99
7. Ordinary Man
3:14 $0.99
8. I Do Declare
3:52 $0.99
9. Beg Or Borrow
4:08 $0.99
10. Southern Belle
2:46 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Detroit power pop trio Chris Richards and the Subtractions will release their full-length debut Sad Sounds of the Summer on Gangplank Records on March 17th. Produced by Gangplank-founder David Feeny at his own Tempermill Studios just outside of Detroit, the album contains 10 songs of hook-laden, melody-intensive pop confection.

In addition to singer/songwriter Chris Richards, the Subtractions feature bass player Todd Holmes and drummer Larry Grodsky. While Sad Sounds of the Summer is the first release by the Subtractions, it follows a number of successful solo releases by Richards, who with bandmates Holmes and Grodsky have been fixtures on the Detroit scene since their time in 80’s and 90’s outfits Hippodrome and The Pantookas. Richards’ last release, 2004’s The Mystery Spot, received glowing reviews from The All Music Guide and Pitchfork.

Richards’ love of power pop, which combines an affection for the music of the British Invasion along with 90’s bands such as Teenage Fanclub and The Velvet Crush, is reflected in their guitar-driven approach. Says Richards, "We are all about songs dripping in melody and delivered with a punch! The simplicity of power pop makes it very endearing to us."

The band’s sound also has global appeal, thanks to power pop’s enduring popularity far beyond its British and American shores. According to Richards, “I've been fortunate to have my records released and do well in Spain, Sweden, Japan, and Australia and both the press and fan reaction have been amazing. It's a challenge trying to let fans in multiple countries know we’ve got a record out, but there’s such a great network of the genre’s fans out there that word just seems to spread.”

The recording of Sad Sounds of the Summer took place over multiple sessions in 2008 at Detroit’s Tempermill Studios, produced and mixed by Tempermill owner and multi-instrumentalist David Feeny (Blanche, American Mars). Richards and Feeny have a long history recording together, a relationship that Richards says thrives on Feeny’s sense of humor and his commitment to making pop records with our patented style of harmonies. “Working out harmonies can be a very tedious process,” says Richards, “so we tend to joke around a bit to make the whole process a bit easier to take.”
The band’s goals for Sad Sounds of the Summer are well-suited to their no-nonsense approach. Says Richards, “Our goal as musicians is to continue to create pop records for now people, to sell a few more records than the previous one, and to play our songs in far-away lands.”



to write a review

Absolute Power Pop

A must-have for classic power poppers!
Talk about patience paying off. The power pop community has been waiting a good five years for the followup to Chris Richards' Mystery Spot, a power pop disc so well-received that it even managed a 7.3 from Pitchfork. Well, our long national nightmare is over. The Detroit popper has added a backing band and released Sad Sounds of the Summer, and it's just what the doctor ordered - even if the sounds aren't sad and it's springtime. Some tracks jangle more than others (opener "I Can't Quit Her"), some rock harder ("I, Miss July"), and some do both ("Oh Canada"), but all are quite fine. Meanwhile, Richards' backing band really helps him focus his sound here, a clear case of addition by Subtractions. A must-have for classic power poppers.

christopher nickey

the perfect pop cd!!!!!
to say that this is mearly a good cd would be a GROSS understatement. this is a freakin masterpeice of power pop ! chris and the fellas have given the world the finest slab of gooey pop goodness since Mr. Sweet's "girlfriend " disc or teenage fanclub's "bandwagonesque" CD if you dig these guys (as well as tommy keene and orange humble band and a million more jangly bands for that matter)then you will love this cd ...not like it ...LOVE IT! prepare to listen to it over and over til your so sick of it that you lend it to your buddy and order pathetic history or mystery spot . this will be the soundtrack for you sad sad summer ! two thumbs way up for sad sounds of the summer . nicely done boys


lives up to the lofty comparisons
Not only does this album remind me sonically of the usual jangle/powerpop suspects (vintage Tommy Keene especially comes to mind) the songwriting stands up well to the comparisions. "I, Miss July" and "Oh Canada (Pt. Deux)" are particularly strong. Recommended.

Father Mosh

Top Ten of 2009!
Soaring lead vocals. Angelic harmonies. Chiming guitars. Driving rhythms. Yearning lyrics. A dab or two of distortion. An ironic title (how could music about feeling bad make me feel so good? -"Let me be the rain on your sunny day...")

"It's a pure pop delight!" says Bruce Brodeen, power pop entrepreneur, Not Lame dot com.

This is solidly in my Top 10 of 2009; in fact, something awfully good will have to come along to displace it from the #1 slot! (My sole criticism of the album is it only has 10 songs.) If you haven't bought a copy yet, shame on ya, mate!