CD review of Redding by Redding

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starstarstarhalf starno star Label: Rock Ridge Music
Released: 2006
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Cool new bands show up from the strangest of places these days. Redding, an alt-pop four-piece from the small town of Greenville, Illinois, is proof of that. Yes, there is a college there (Greenville College) where the band met and began writing songs and performing together – but really, is there anything to do in small towns like this besides making music, tipping cows, or eating pork rinds? Not really, but then again, bands that come from these towns don’t always produce solid debut records the way Redding has.

Redding has an endearing dreamy pop sound that might remind you of British band Travis, indie popsters Daphne Meets Derby, or even a stripped down Hawthorne Heights. “Another Day” starts out with a modest wall of guitars, but they show an effective use of dynamics right from the start when the distortion pedals are silenced and lead singer Joseph Graves’ smooth vocals are paired with some really nice harmonies. “Gleam” is more of the same.

“In Montauk” is janglier and “All I Can Hold” has a Goo Goo Dolls meets Fall Out Boy’s pop sensibility. Drummer Jon Stamm shows his versatility with some well-timed snare rolls on “What You’ve Become,” which is easily the catchiest track on here. The last two tracks, “Bottlenecking” and “Concerning Our Escape” are more scaled back in a Death Cab sort of way, and are pretty decent songs with nicely understated hooks.

Redding is one of those bands that will not take the world by storm, and they probably aren’t trying to. They don’t fit squarely into a specific genre unless there is one called college/indie/alt/rock/pop, and that’s part of what makes them intriguing. But more than that, the songs on this debut are strong enough to suggest Redding will be hanging around for a while, under the radar or not. Many kids, as well as aging fans of Toad the Wet Sprocket or Better Than Ezra, are going to take to these guys immediately.

~Mike Farley