Volume 91, Issue 80

Thursday, February 19, 1998

warm buns


Sandbox solves conceptual mystery

IF WE FOLLOW YOU HOME – WOULD YOU KEEP US? The members of Sandbox try their best puppy-dog faces... but don't be fooled. Catch them at Call the Office on Feb. 26 with fellow Canadians Zuckerbaby.

By Monica Leone

Gazette Staff

Looking for a murder mystery to solve? Whether it is an intricate enigma you desire or just a great pop album, look no further than Sandbox's latest CD, A Murder in the Glee Club.

Released four months ago, this album is like no other previous Sandbox recording as it recounts the story of a murder. The title track, "A Murder In The Glee Club," has not been heard for nearly 65 years. Originally recorded by Freddie Corn and the Ohioans as an introduction to play back in 1932, this song was never again released or published. The album begins with the necessary information to embark on solving the mystery of the murder in the glee club and subsequently, the band's first concept album.

When asked why this album was created, Mike Smith, principle songwriter and guitarist, explained "it was a way of separating our record from all the other records in an attempt to make the record stand out."

"A Murder in the Glee Club is nothing more than an analogy for someone that does things against the norm," admits Smith.

The album's first single, "Carry," is an excellent example of a great pop tune. This song, in regards to the mystery, informs the listener that the murderer is totally rejecting society. Despite containing fundamental clues to solve the mystery, this song contains the necessary ingredients for a catchy, foot-tapping pop song.

Producer Don Fleming of Sonic Youth, Screaming Trees and Posies fame can be blamed for this very clean pop album. "Working with Don was a totally different kind of experience. It was a totally different approach to producing," describes Mike. This album, comprised of catchy melodies, is a result of Sandbox's unique approach to music, which has already produced three hit singles from the previous album and numerous award nominations.

Growing up together 90 kilometres north of Halifax in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, Paul Murray (lead vocals), Smith (guitar and vocals), Jason Archibald (guitar and vocals), Scott MacFarlane (bass guitar) and Troy Shanks (drums) formed Sandbox just after they completed university.

Currently on their seven-week tour with West coast pop rockers Zuckerbaby, the band is hoping to prove to be one of great music and performance. When asked why people should attend the shows Smith explained, "It's a great bill. We give 110 per cent every night and everyone will leave with a smile on their face." Sandbox have been very well received in Ontario and throughout the rest of Canada.

Apart from the tour, Sandbox's current video, "Carry," is currently in rotation on MuchMusic. The new single, "...to Red," will soon be heard on a radio near you. The video to accompany "...to Red" will be released Feb. 24. "It was a lot of fun to shoot," says Smith. "We shot it in Toronto at York University in the underground tunnels of the school."

So, if you are looking for something more interesting than Sherlock Holmes or Agatha Christie, check out Sandbox's new concept album. A Murder in the Glee Club is a great pop album – and that's no mystery.

To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazent@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright © The Gazette 1998