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Kerns & the Hemispheres | [Electron Drive]

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United States - Minnesota

Other Genres You Will Love
Rock: Progressive Rock Pop: Quirky Moods: Mood: Fun
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[Electron Drive]

by Kerns & the Hemispheres

A songwriter that melds unique melodies, harmonies and chord progressions trying not to sound like Ben Folds, Wings, King's X, Sting, and Blue Oyster Cult.
Genre: Rock: Progressive Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Wash Off the Airplane
4:48 $0.99
2. Baptized On New Years Eve
4:10 $0.99
3. Based On a True Story, Pt. II
4:37 $0.99
4. Me Haunting Me
5:14 $0.99
5. It's All the Same to Me
2:29 $0.99
6. Postcard Season
5:52 $0.99
7. Name in Frost
4:22 $0.99
8. Fallout Song
5:19 $0.99
9. Dyess, Ar 72330 (feat. Taras Umrysh)
4:53 $0.99
10. Peaces
5:26 $0.99
11. The Spring of My Discontent (feat. Taras Umrysh)
4:56 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
A REVIEW FROM Brian A. Smith at thephantomtollbooth.com:

If a group is the sum of its influences, Kerns and the Hemispheres is more than the sum of its parts. Electron Drive is a careening journey at breakneck speed through several different styles of music, yet somehow held together by a common thread, one which is nearly impossible to classify.

"Wash Off the Airplane" is bouncy, Ben Folds-style pop, followed by the Southern-tinged "Baptized on New Year's Eve." "Based on a True Story" is pure power pop, followed by a countryish intro to "Me Haunting Me."

"All the Same to Me" melds country, melodic rock, and Bleu/Jellyfish interludes of pop. "Postcard Season" just flat rocks musically, although the female vocals here don't necessarily live up to the dUg Pinnick-like bass part here. "Fallout Song" seems to be a modern retelling of Nero fiddling while Rome burns, or it may be an REM like defiance of the end of the world.

"Dyess Arkansas" invokes Johnny Cash with its title, and contains a touch of bluegrass. "Peaces," a folk rocker, could easily be covered by Jonathan Rundman and Beki Hemingway, and "Spring of My Discontent" mixes Fleetwood Mac and Over the Rhine, filtered through a more modern amplified sound.

In other words, I wouldn't try to pin this group's sound down if I had to. What I do know is this: it all works. If you don't get hooked by one song, wait for the next one. Something here will grab your attention, no matter what you normally like.

Brian A. Smith


REVIEW FROM Erik Ritland at curiousnorth.com:

Kerns and the Hemispheres are the sort of band I want to have. At least in the way they go about things. Kerns writes his own melodic pop/rock that is meant to be experienced with a full band. Yet they are also versatile enough to play covers at coffee shops and bars. I feel like that’s the only way I could make music for a living and still enjoy it. Kerns is also friends with one of the nicest songwriters I know, local Michigan transplant Jonathan Rundman, so I’m sure he’s a great guy.

Their music reminds me of other local bands like Soap and Radio Drive (and Rundman for that matter) in that it takes classic ’70s and ’80s rock sounds and makes them fresh and alive. They also have a strong, unique progressive rock vibe.

There aren’t any dull moments on Electron Drive, their debut album. Moody “Spring of my Discontent” is a vehicle for a number of impressive guitar and violin solos. It’s reminiscent of Kansas at their best. “Name in Frost” builds from a funky beginning with a unique chord progression into a big organ-led rocker. The heaviest song, and the most progressive, is “Postcard Season,” a melodic suite featuring some cool synths. Big organ driven ’70s rocker “Wash Off the Airplane” is the most “radio ready” and has the albums catchiest chorus.

’70s progressive rock was known for its, uh, interesting subject matter (think Yes’ Tales from Topographic Oceans or King Crimson’s “21st Century Schizoid Man”). It’s safe to say, though, that Kerns has written the only song in the genre about Christian baptism. On “Baptized on New Year’s Eve” he intelligently explains the newness that comes with baptism without sounding preachy. Musically it’s also one of the most interesting songs on Electron. It begins with a poppy rhythm (with hand claps even) over a bluesy chord progression before giving way to another memorable Kerns chorus.

It’s nice to know that there are so many bands in the Twin Cities that take classic sounds and make them their own. Kerns and the Hemispheres are one of the best examples.

Erik Ritland



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