Venice Is Sinking
Hailing from Athens, GA, the five-piece Venice Is Sinking specializes in lush, anthemic orchestral pop with occasional dalliances into both the Americana and experimental. Venice Is Sinking makes songs about moving out, breaking up, moving on, and dead pets. Sorry About The Flowers is the band’s first full-length; it is scheduled for release in Spring 2006 on the One Percent Press label. Venice Is Sinking has existed since the mid-90s, when guitarist/singer Daniel Lawson and a friend from New York, Kevin J. O’Neill Jr., began trading 4-track tapes in the mail. The first Venice Is Sinking “album” came out in the summer of 1997 in an extremely limited release of 50 handmade cassettes in Lawson’s hometown of Peachtree City, GA, whose previous cultural achievement was the ability to park one’s golf cart at the local Chili’s. Six years and one coffee house show later, Venice Is Sinking rebooted in Athens, GA on a strictly home recording basis. Viola/flute/violin/cello player/singer Karolyn Troupe and drummer Lucas Jensen (formerly of Pacific UV) were brought in as ringers for scattered recording sessions and practices. Lawson and fellow landscape architect/neighbor/keyboardist Alex Thibadoux began a series of extended jam sessions at the unfortunately addressed 666 Pulaski St. house where Thibadoux resided. Troupe and Jensen were brought back into the fold, and Venice Is Sinking was born. Again. To call the early practices of this lineup loose would be an understatement, but eventually Lawson started bringing in songs that had been dormant for years. Thus ended Venice Is Sinking’s brief, yet infamous, Experimental Phase of September 2003 as the band, for better or worse, began its journey into the world of dark orchestral pop formalism. After a while, the band decided that they actually had to do something with the music they’d been playing, and, furthermore, they needed a bassist. Enter Steve Miller (not the famous one), a prodigious talent who may or may not be a member of sixteen bands at any time. Venice Is Sinking played some shows, including an extremely cramped performance supporting the Helio Sequence and the Secret Machines. They began recording an album at Radium Recordings in bucolic Commerce, Georgia under the watchful eye of ace engineer Chris Bishop (Macha, Circulatory System). What you hold in your hands now is the product of said sessions. Sorry About The Flowers is an album that reflects the personal upheavals that surrounded its making: the band lost a beloved practice space to gutter punks, Lawson and Troupe ended long-term relationships (and began one together), and, in the biggest blow, Troupe lost her brother. Sorry About The Flowers loosely revolves around an exploration of spatial and situational transition, the power of location, and the hopeful side of loss. Since the album’s recording, the band has gone through yet another period of “transition” as keyboard player Alex Thibadoux packed up and moved to NYC and was replaced—amicably—by James Sewell. Lawson and Troupe ended their now two-year relationship as well. Maybe the next album will be the band’s Rumours! If nothing else, it has made for some “fun” moments in the band’s tour van (nicknamed “The Baptist Bump”). People have described the Venice Is Sinking “sound” as slightly dark, pretty pop music, heavy on the strings and keyboards. Reference points mentioned have included the Cure, Galaxie 500, Low, Hetch Hetchy (whom none of the band members has ever heard), Ida, Hugo Largo, and the Delgados. One Percent Press recently released a split EP featuring three Venice Is Sinking songs and two by Atlanta act What We Do Is Secret. It has been selling quite well locally and online. Listen at Last.fm
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