THE STRAND - 'Seconds Waiting' LP (Dig! Records, 2016 - LST-001)
Reissue of circa '83 Virginian power pop LP Seconds Waiting (w/ an unreleased studio track) from regional under-legends The Strand!
DIG! Records proudly presents THE STRAND’s debut album, Seconds Waiting. Originally released by Wasp Records in 1983, the album was as unlikely a piece of the brimming underground music puzzle then as it remains now. THE STRAND hailed from Old Town, Virginia, a city more known for its Presidential Masonic Temple than a local music scene. Situated on the Potomac River directly across from Washington D.C. and its much-lauded harDCore punk scene, its no surprise Seconds Waiting is such an obscure treasure, misplaced and mostly misunderstood in the annals of underground excavation since.
By design, pop back-catalogues are a mess of two-or-so minute sides: one-hit-wonders, near misses and flat out failed attempts. Seconds Waiting, recorded in ’82 at Hit & Run Studios (home to local luminaries as varied as Tommy Keene and Void), makes good on pop's promise with a full album worth of hits. It’s a rare instance of the guitar-based pop gestalt fully-realized, melding anthemic punk energy and pop melodies with urgent delivery and bare-bone production. An American original, it’s wholly unique, and essential listening.
“You and Me” kicks the album off with a spot on slice of teenage naivety and a “96 Tears” caliber organ run. “Popular Girl” and “I Understand You” sidestep the saccharine moves of their bubblegum and glam rock neighbors, for more austere vibes of Kinksy doom and gloom, residue from a Brit-invasion hangover. Feedback cues the blitzkrieg of supercharged guitars on “Kids Today”, while the previously unreleased studio track, “Scarred Streets”, showcases the band at their most agro! “One More Ring” rivals Protex, The Nerves and Badfinger in the category of All TIME GREATEST POWER POP SONG FEATURING A TELEPHONE. Post-punk menace weighs in on the second half of the album, oddly climaxing with minor chords and a haunting bridge on the albums title track, for an out-and-out KILLER long player throughout!