days, it’s quite hard to listen to Sunny Day Real Estate without hearing the
echoes of the legions of tight-jeaned, funnily coifed nancy boys crying in their energy drinks in
the background. And though these recently-reunited Seattle greats have been saddled with giving
birth to the sound so revoltingly known as “emo” today, when the band first
emerged in the wake of grunge in 1993, what they created was a wholly unique,
explosive and, yes, emotive offshoot of heavy rock that sounded like nothing
else before it.
continuation of the excellent reissue series of their influential back catalog,
Sub Pop has remastered the quartet’s first two albums, their 1994 debut
masterpiece Diary and its self-title
1995 follow-up (lovingly nicknamed either the Pink Album or LP2 depending on who you talk to), complete with bonus tracks, new liner notes and
fancy packaging. The extra tracks are nothing too exciting, especially for the
diehard fans who already own the 7-inch singles for these albums. Apparently,
there was such a deficit in rare material to tack onto these reissues that for LP2, which in and of itself is considered
more of an odds and ends compilation rather than a fully realized album, they
used a b-side from the band’s 1998 quasi-comeback release How It Feels to Be Something On (the arrhythmic “Bucket of
Chicken”, which favors the end of the Sunny Day style gratuitously mined by
Deftones, one of the rare bands to actually do something innovative with the
SDRE sound). Plus, it seems like Sub Pop is holding onto their pre-Diary 7-inches for future utilization.
We will have to wait and see; one can only guess.
the fact that these two albums are now being reintroduced to a whole new
generation raised on the belief that the sound SDRE invented began with
Dashboard Confessional is a wonderful and much-needed thing.
Standout Tracks: “Seven”, “Shadows”, “Grendel” (Diary); “8”, “Red Elephant”, “Bucket of
Chicken” (LP2) RON HART