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Lois


Country of origin:

U.S.

Type of music generally:

Aternative pop/folk

Status:

Most recent release, The Union Themes (with Brendan Canty, 2000)

See also:

Wikipedia's entry on Lois Maffeo

Comparisons:

Mary Timony, Kristin Hersh, Shannon Wright, Kat Terran, Liz Phair, Heavenly, Tiger Trap, Bunnygrunt

Covers/own material:

Own, occasional covers

General comments:

Lois is the band that surrounds Lois Maffeo, and pretty much defines lo-fi indie folky pop. They were doing it way before it became the in thing. (Neile)

LOIS! they are so great. i love lois. i love them. the lead singer (named lois) is so nice. a bunch of us went to one of their shows and they were so unpretentious. we kept on yelling for them to play "indie" and she kept on laughing because she thought that song was a throw away song (she did it for a 7" monthly vinyl thing, for the month of july...thus "indie" for independence's day). she finally played it solo and kinda screwed it up....but we loved it anyway. it has to be one of their best songs to date....
     lois are pure pop (great pop). catchy and fun and happy. i love to bop around my room listening to indie..... love her music, but let's face it, she only knows four chords. (iflin@speakeasy.net)

Lois! yay! She's one of my very favorite solo artists. The music is just her and an acoustic guitar, and sometimes bass and drums. (scottz@crl.com)

Comments about live performance:

The three times I've seen her live, it's been just her with her guitar, and a drummer (Heather Dunn, ex-Tiger Trap—greatest drummer in the history of pop music, no doubt :). Each of the shows has been really great! Lois always has the funniest stories to tell, and ooh, all those broken guitar strings..hee hee! I think she's touring at this very moment, so go see her, if you can! Live, she's a must. (1995, scottz@crl.com)

Recommended first album:

Strumpet

Recordings:


Butterfly Kiss

Release info:

1992—K Records—KLP 15

Availability:

Wide in U.S.

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended for fans of indie pop/folk

Group members:

Lois Maffeo—guitar, singing

Guest artists:

Molly Neuman—drums
Stuart Moxham (Young Marble Giants)—bass

Produced by:

Stuart Moxham

Comments:

Lois's indie folk sound does pick up a slight (Young Marble Giants)-like flavour from her work with Stuart Moxham here. Lois was way ahead of her time with the sound of this album. The songs are all short, punchy, catchy with driving yet minimalist backing. (Neile)

Strumpet

Release info:

1993—K Records—KLP 21

Availability:

Wide in U.S.

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended for fans of indie pop/folk

Group members:

Lois Maffeo—guitar, vocals

Guest artists:

Molly Neuman—drums
Donna Dresch—bass
Steve Peters—guitar
Stephen Immerwahr—bass, vocals

Produced by:

Calvin Johnson

Comments:

A prefect example of minimalist indie pop from this era. It's haunting, punchy, catchy, energetic. The kind of thing that you almost forget about, but the instant you put it in your player you're reminded of how great it is. I need to remember this one more often, because I really do enjoy it. Lois Maffeo has a lovely voice for this sort of thing and a great way with tunes and lyrics. (Neile)

Bet The Sky

Release info:

1995—K Records—KLP 36

Availability:

Wide in U.S.

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended for fans of indie pop/folk

Group members:

Lois Maffeo—vocals, guitar
Brendan Canty—organ, guitar, harmonica
Heather Dunn—drums John Goodmanson—bass

Guest artists:

Stuart Hallerman, Calvin Johnson, Lois Maffeo

Comments:

Minimal, rocky folk and an understated performance and song-writing style made this a stand-out disc for me. Lois demonstrates simple strength and proves you don't need 20 instruments to make a good album. Not a departure from the previous albums, and as good as they are but mostly a little more on the quiet side. "Shy Town" is a specially great song. (Neile)

Snapshot Radio ep

Release info:

1996—K Records—KLP 57

Availability:

Wide in U.S.

Ecto priority:

Recommended for Lois fans

Group members:

Lois Maffeo—acoustic guitar, melodica, electric guitar, vocals

Guest artists:

Heather Dunn—drums (1, 3)
Brendan Canty—electric guitar (1, 3), organ (3)
Alan Sparhawk (Low)—vocals (1)
Steve Wold—harmonica (1)
Damon W. Locks—percussion, vocals (2)
Tim Rutili—electric guitar (2), piano (2, 4)
Ben Massarella—percussion (2, 4), drums (4)
Brian Deck—drums (2)
Tim Hurley—bass, xylophone (4)
James McNew—synthesizer (5)

Comments:

A five-song ep. Though is this good and I do like it, it isn't her most compelling collection of songs. I actively don't like "My Souvenir," but really like "Not Funny, Ha Ha." (Neile)

Infinity Plus

Release info:

1996—K Records—KLP 58

Availability:

Wide in U.S.

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended for fans of indie pop/folk

Group members:

Lois Maffeo—acoustic guitar, vocals
Heather Dunn—drums
Brendan Canty—electric guitar, acoustic guitar, organ, tambourine

Guest artists:

Elliott Smith—acoustic guitar, vocals (1)
Ryan Baldoz—electric guitar (5)
Alan Sparkhawk (Low)—electric guitar (7, 8), tympani (7)

Comments:

I really enjoy this—my only complaint is that the songs sound similar enough that the album blurs for me. It still has the driving acoustic guitar with Lois Maffeo's slightly girlish but still compelling vocals over. It's just hard to distinguish between the tracks for me. That doesn't stop me enjoying it, though! (Neile)

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Entry last updated 2016-09-04 19:12:50.
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