Shaimus | Paper Sun

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Paper Sun

by Shaimus

Launched by the inclusion of their first single, "All Of This," in the Playstation 2 game "Guitar Hero," Shaimus' fresh-yet-familiar sound combines catchy hooks, soaring melodies, and searing guitar solos.
Genre: Rock: Modern Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Left To Dry
4:28 $0.99
2. Slow Down
3:47 $0.99
3. All Of This
2:35 $0.99
4. Run My Spirit Down
4:33 $0.99
5. Put It Off
5:29 $0.99
6. Old Fashioned Love
3:14 $0.99
7. Red White and Blue
3:34 $0.99
8. When I Dream
4:21 $0.99
9. The Book (Again and Again)
4:08 $0.99
10. Stay
3:28 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Between Guitar Hero and Rock Band, Shaimus has entered the homes of millions of people around the world. The Los Angeles-based rock band's song "Like a Fool" has lit a fire under plastic instrument-wielding rockers everywhere as a free download for Rock Band 2; the tune also helps to usher in the next phase of Shaimus music with their second album, The Sad Thing Is, We Like It Here—a collection of songs that showcases the band's knack for memorable hooks, soulful vocals and intricate-yet-somehow-tasteful playing.

The five members of Shaimus joined forces toward the end of 2004 while attending Berklee College of Music in Boston. Their mysterious band name origins and dubious character traits aside, the quintet began locking in with each other musically almost immediately, and soon began work on their debut album, Paper Sun. The disc had its genesis in the late night abandoned cubicles of the Rhode Island Food Bank where the drums were tracked (but no canned food was consumed by starving musicians). The recording moved on to cramped apartment bedrooms where most of the rest was completed. Partway through the hasty recording process, "All Of This" was tapped by a little known company called Harmonix to be in a quirky new game called Guitar Hero. This would become the catalyst for Shaimus' worldwide proliferation of rock.

In 2005, Guitar Hero exploded into a burgeoning pop culture phenomenon and left the band with an unexpected demand for their bouncy first single and its accompanying album. The album was self-released in February 2006 and met with a positive response—thousands of CDs sold, tens of thousands of iTunes sales, multiple five-star reviews, licensing for MTV Networks and an international cooking show seen in 22 countries, radio play on mainstream, indie and satellite radio, and an invitation to perform at the E3 video game convention—all without the help of a record label.

A tour would soon follow, during which the band honed their sound, songwriting process and performance chops. Their live shows, marked by energy, unadulterated volume, ripping guitar solos and sweat-drenched wristbands became the band's trademark and led to a win at B.B. King's Battle of the Bands in Universal City and a 7-month residency in an LA rock club. With a bevy of new songs that exemplified the newly refined Shaimus style and a steady demand from their fans, Phil, Evan, Cam, Dave and Johannes realized it was time to record a new album—one that would prove just how far they'd come since Paper Sun.

So, holing themselves up for most of 2008, Shaimus painstakingly crafted a follow-up that would define the sound of a band coming into its own (this time minus the food bank but adding a bathroom, a closet and The Record Plant). The result was 2009's The Sad Thing Is, We Like It Here, with themes of morality, mundanity and generational impassivity, plus the standard serving of love and ire that accompany most quality music. Add to that a rhythm section that's as solid as a petrified redwood trunk and guitar licks so acidic they could melt just about any face, and you have the rock gospel according to Shaimus.

Thanks to the inclusion of "Like a Fool" in Rock Band 2 and a music video for "Turn the Other Way" that features the cathartic demolition of an office by the band members, the buzz only continues to grow, and Shaimus has taken another step toward the band's single, modest goal: total world domination.



to write a review


Up and Coming Stars
I loved the CD. Most the time there are a couple songs I like on a CD but there were maybe two on this one I didn't love. I hope to see these guys spread their wings and fly


It wasn't what I expected at all, and I couldn't be happier.
Honestly, that's how I feel about Shaimus's album, Paper Sun. Having heard the band's amazingly catchy All of This months and months ago, I decided to pick up the album (actually available through the band's official website, I expected the entire album to be similar to that song, which is an up-tempo tune that keeps me from dismissing the genre of "Pop/Rock" completely. Now, I know this could officially be classified as "Indie Rock," but that's only because the band is not signed to a major label. Calling all independent music in the rock category "Indie Rock" is kind of like calling all Nascar fans rednecks.

Wait, bad simile.

Anyway, I'd venture to guess that the Pop/Rock genre of music is the most overcrowded, which would lead people to believe that it's easy to write a good Pop/Rock song. This couldn't be further from the truth. Maybe the genre lets in the most crap. Maybe this genre has allowed albums with one catchy (notice I did not say good, I said catchy) song in a group of twelve into the club.

I don't think any good or even average song is easy to write. The coordination and composition behind instruments or, in the case of techno and hip hop or rap, computerized beats and riffs, is not easy. Not anyone can do it, which is why good music is sometimes hard to find. A lot of garbage gets produced because people with a lot of money and no musical inclination whatsoever are letting it happen.

Writing a good Pop/Rock song may be one of the hardest things to do in music, yet Shaimus nailed it 10 times on the same album.

Why is Paper Sun so good? Quite possibly because Shaimus is independent. With no one to answer to, many independent artists are allowed to produce the kind of music they want, rather than having to have a "radio friendly" song to kick it off and something to eventually sell to McDonald's to use in a promotion. The song mentioned earlier, All of This, has wonderful coordination between the piano and guitar that makes you feel like you're bouncing through the song. Don't let that fool you, however, as a quick paced guitar solo sneaks in the song.

I suppose the album could be described as mostly mellow. Left to Dry kicks off the album with a dream-like guitar guiding the listener through the song to each time the chorus is sung. The up-tempo All of This is followed by Run My Spirit Down, a reminder not to get too low no matter what life throws at you. The opening lines immediately grabbed my attention the first time I heard them because of their unique way of looking at how we sometimes ignore the good things when times are rough:

"The earth went spinning 'round the sun today / A little faster than it did yesterday / Still I insist to ignore the steady pace of the passing days / And I run my spirit down."

Wisely, the slow tempo of the song is followed by the upbeat Put it Off. That cadence is what makes this album so good. The listener is never allowed to zone out, which is a problem with many albums that try to have several slower paced songs. Shaimus definitely can increase your pulse rate through intricate guitar play and excellent composition, then slow things down without making the listener think, "This doesn't fit." Even within slower songs, such as Old Fashioned Love, the tempo is kicked up at a point before the song ends and moves into When I Dream, which starts out simply, with only a voice and a piano for about the first minute and fifteen seconds. When the drums and guitar enter the song at that point, it makes the song seem complex despite its relative simplicity.

Simply put, Shaimus created a fantastic piece of art with Paper Sun. I cannot recommend this album highly enough.