Jamie and Steve | Circling

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United States - North Carolina

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Rock: British Invasion Pop: 60's Pop Moods: Type: Vocal
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by Jamie and Steve

British influenced clever catchy jangly pop with a new edge. 6 new songs from Jamie Hoover and Steve Stoeckel of The Spongetones!
Genre: Rock: British Invasion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Origami Woman
3:41 album only
2. Circling
3:15 album only
3. Skeletons
3:34 album only
4. Spin Drift
3:29 album only
5. You
3:23 album only
6. Wonder Girl
3:04 album only


Album Notes
Powerpop CD Review: Jamie & Steve’s Circling
Reviewed by: Richard Rossi
Circling offers up another collection of outside-the-box pop songs and much like a circus act, they’re guaranteed to both charm and amaze.
Just about everyone liked the Spongetones. If was virtually impossible not to get caught up in the catchy melodies, spot-on harmonies, and Beatlesque stylings of Jamie, Steve, Rob, and Pat.
As Jamie & Steve, Jamie Hoover and Steve Stoeckel push the envelope the way the Sponetones never did, embracing pop convention and turning it on it’s ear at the same time. Each of their prior efforts (English Afterthoughts, Next Big Thing, and Imaginary Cafe) were memorable for having their share of catchy, radio friendly pop songs while juxtaposing them with pieces that go in an altogether unexpected direction – so exciting and different they make one sit up and take notice.
Circling offers up another collection of outside-the-box pop songs and much like when the circus comes to town, it’s guaranteed to both charm and amaze.
circlingJust as with Next Big Thing’s “Half A Man” and Imaginary Cafe’s “A Dangerous Man To Know”, Hoover & Stoeckel do their best impression of tight-rope walkers (or knife throwers, maybe?) with “Origami Woman” and “Spin Drift”. The latter is a superb mood piece – It’s serene beginnings fool you as it later pulls you into a dark abyss….and then brings you back out again. “You” and “Wonderful Girl” finish the EP perfectly with their irresistible melodies and gorgeous harmonies, making it evident that Jamie & Steve have a firm grasp of the old PT Barnum adage.
Always leave them wanting more.



to write a review

Soren Roquentin

Almost Unbelievable
I heard Origami Woman on Lord Litter's show, and had to write Lord to thank him for the introduction. To quote LL on Jamie & Steve, they're "almost unbelievable." The vocal arrangements ... you gotta be kidding me. and some of the pitches, like they slur half-steps that don't quite span the entire interval. It's sick-cool. I found the song disorientating, in a thrilling way. Every other measure brings a new surprise. I don't want to get used to it, don't want to listen to the point where I know what's coming, yet I want to hear it again, right now in fact.


Jamie and Steve Raise the Bar, Once Again
Some may know Jamie Hoover and Steve Stoeckel as 1/2 of the Spongetones, that British invasion power pop band out that produced solid music with clever lyrics (e.g., My Girl Maryanne, Homonym Girl, King Ampersand). As graduates of the Spongetones school of rock, Jamie and Steve have spread their roots and taken their writing to a whole new level. Their music isn't just catchy with clever lyrics (although it is that). Sure, you can sit back and just listen and enjoy, but there's so much more here -- layers and layers. It's intellectual. It's art.

Stylistically, this CD is all over the map, which for a complete eclectic like myself, is a really good thing. Origami Woman is a psychedelic picture of man's quest to understand the mystery that is woman and includes a subliminal poetry reading. The use of descriptive term "Origami", a Japanese artform, reveals that the woman is viewed as a piece of art to be studied and understood. The lyrics to the song are reminiscent of E.E. Cummings, of whom I am a huge fan. At least as of now, it's my favorite. But as with prior CDs of theirs, my favorite changes over time as I dig and unravel the secrets to their songs. Skeletons and Spin Drift have completely different feels but are are equally as good and are clear candidates to knock Origami Woman out of my top slot. Skeletons sounds like pop country and includes a banjo, which is a first for this duo. Spin Drift reminds me a bit of Seaside Sparrow from The Next Big Thing, which is an amazing song of its own right. Spin Drift takes the listener to the ocean again where a scene of serenity and perfection is on display. It then reminds us that things aren't always as they seem on the surface. Spin Drift is poetry in song.

As a bonus, these two have published all the lyrics to their songs on their web site, so be sure to check it out at www.jamieandsteve.net.