Sunday, October 26, 2008

Speaker - Model Citizen (Capricorn, 1997)

Long Beach, CA's Speaker formed in 1995 as a creative partnership between friends. Guitarist/vocalist Tom Gonzales and bassist/vocalist Matt Jacovides played with various people in the local scene, but when Jacovides tried to help Gonzales find bandmembers, he realized that their collaboration was better than his current band. Drummer Scott Devours completed the lineup, and the trio began writing and playing their brand of dynamic, diverse music. Speaker's first release, Model Citizen, came out in 1997 on Capricorn Records, and after spending much of 1998 writing and recording with producer and friend Rich Mouser, they released Orizaba in 1999. (

There appears to be barely anything written online about Speaker and their debut EP, Model Citizen. The band certainly earn some cool points in my book for having choosen Don Fleming as producer, the man responsible for producing some of my favorite records (Teenage Fanclub, Sonic Youth, The Posies, among others). The result was six songs of fairly average post-grunge guitar crunch typical of the era. The band did however employ an interesting use of Prince-esque falsetto vocals at points, effectively adding a heavy dose of quirkiness to their sound. The band followed this EP with the more groove-oriented full length Orizaba two years later, which appears to be the last the world heard from Speaker. 

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1 comment:

Drive Texas said...

I actually picked up a promo copy of the "Orizaba" album and it was really good. It's interesting how pre-Myspace bands have faded into complete unknown obscurity but bands that are long defunct now can at least have some stuff online for people to find.