Interior Demonstration


Back in the fall of 2001, I decided to hit Nashville to see Self, the aforementioned band Joe mentioned a few days ago that ties the three of us together.  They were performing at 328 Performance Hall (the venue has since closed) as part of the New Music Conference.  Self shared a bill made up of acts from the old Spongebath Records label (with the exception of Detachment Kit).  One of those bands – a gritty, tight, four-piece outfit from Sparta, Tennessee called The Features blew my mind and quickly turned into the highlight of the trip.  I attended the show practically knowing nothing about the band.  I departed a fan for life.

Their songs are blended with swirling guitars and mesmerizing keys while minced with a cadence of shotgun-triggered percussion.  On plastic, the band is quick and consistent.  On stage, they’re a unit possessed, determined to play every chord like it’s their last.

Earlier in the month, The Features self-released an EP entitled Contrast in hopes of generating label interest.  The theme of the five-song set surrounds a conflict with their previous label, Universal Records, which occurred just after the first of the year.  The band was met with an indirect ultimatum: either they had to agree to record a cover version of “All You Need Is Love” by the Beatles or face being dropped from the label before releasing another album.  The song was intended to be used in a credit card commercial, and subsequently released as the first single on the new album. 

Never one to give in to outside pressures, The Features decided to walk, and in doing so sacrificed their own future while leaving a potentially lucrative offer on the table.  The situation is best described in “Guillotine” when Pelham sings:

“Now they take you by the arm / And out the door you learn / As they’re driving you away, you hear ‘off with his head’ / Soon you’re surrounded / ‘cuz everybody knows / There’ll be no admission, ahh, to see your show”

The Features :: Guillotine

I’m quite fond of songs about wilted relationships, so I couldn’t resist posting this one about a guy attempting to make himself a new heart after having it broken, only to discover it just doesn’t keep the same beat as it once did.

The Features :: Wooden Heart

If you like these songs, please support the band and purchase the album here.


6 Responses to “Interior Demonstration”

  1. 1 Joe
    September 29, 2006 at 3:26 am

    Tight review. I hadn’t recalled that’s how you were first introduced to The Features, though I remember you heading to that show. A prof here was just talking the other day about how she would have never imagined the music of her generation would now be used primarily for selling crap. Nice to see The Features buck the trend. A solid indie label will be better anyway (SubPop, these guys are better than Band of Horses!). Before realizing you had made this post, I actually listened to The Features debut Exhibit A tonight for the first time in about 6 months. Better than I even recalled, and it’s already made it to my MP3 player.

  2. 2 Dave
    September 29, 2006 at 5:31 am

    Outstanding! As I mentioned before, you were the one most equipped to do this post! It takes a little commotion…

  3. September 29, 2006 at 7:29 am

    Finally got the monkey off my back with this post, fellas. Thanks for the feedback. I’ve already made a few editing corrections.

    It’s a shame Exhibit A is their only full length release thus far. They have such a large catalogue of songs that have never been officially released (some produced by Matt Mahaffey). Hopefully this EP gives them the exposure they deserve.

  4. January 11, 2007 at 10:26 am

    guys in pickups are hot!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Upcoming Shows:


September 2006
    Oct »

%d bloggers like this: