August 23, 2006
BAND OF THE WEEK: SNOWDEN
Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.
Members: Jordan Jeffares (guitar, keys, vocals), Chandler Rentz (drums, vocals), Corinne Lee (bass, keys, vocals), David Payne (guitar)
Fun Fact: At Snowden’s last show in Indianapolis, the band played for a bartender and five people. Payment came in the form of shots.
Why They’re Worth Watching: The band members are young, but Snowden fuses brooding melancholic lyrics and lush, expansive soundscapes with precision and maturity.
For Fans Of: Joy Division, Interpol, Starflyer 59
Two years ago, Snowden frontman Jordan Jeffares couldn’t imagine his musical career reaching beyond the confines of his Athens, Ga. apartment. A senior at the University of Georgia, Jeffares spent his last year of college a recluse to society in almost complete isolation. After devoting most of his time to studying and writing the music that would eventually evolve into his band’s set list, Jeffares recruited a gang of musical Atlanta suburbanites, and Snowden, deriving its name from Joseph Heller’s Catch-22, began to materialize beyond the written page.
Acclaimed for its dark, lush atmospherics draped over precise, post-punk-inspired guitar work and Jeffares’ deep, brooding vocals, the band has drawn heavy New York media attention. Fans are usually surprised at the band’s Dixie roots. “We definitely are not a Southern rock band,” Jeffares clarifies. “People want to be able to describe things, and it’s very easy to get pigeon-holed because people want things to be understandable and to be able to lump things into a category.” Snowden’s first full-length release, Anti-Anti, sees the band taking cues from bands like The Cure and Radiohead, without mimicking their music. “One of the things I love about these bands is their continual sound progression,” says Jeffares. “On this album, I try and jump all over the place, make each song completely different and never cross my tracks again.”
Some will classify the band as post-shoegaze, but Snowden aims to defy the concept of genre, choosing instead to preserve its independent integrity and strict DIY ethic. “If we have to be called a certain genre or we have to be related to the same bands over and over again, that’s fine for a while, because no one knows who we are,” says Jeffares. “But hopefully we’ll get out of that and be able to stand on our own.”
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