EDITOR NOTE MAY 2006: BAND MAY BE IN THE BAND GRAVEYARD? Let us know.
All it took to polish one of Los Angeles' gems was six months in Athens, Ga. That's how long Jack Burnside and his bandmates in the Few took up residence to make their debut album with production guru Andy LeMaster (Bright Eyes, Azure Ray). "We did it in chunks, whenever he was available," says Burnside. "Living there, and playing in the clubs, it raises your game." The result, an explosive, hooky collection that echoes Burnside's love of the Replacements and fascination with the Cure, is startling from a 22-year-old who took up guitar only three years ago. The Few's lineup includes Burnside's Buckley High buddy Jamie Zwick and drummer Pauline Mu, as well as recently added guitarist Jonathan Zeitlin. And if anybody at Friday night's show at the Knitting Factory detects a vocal similarity to Bright Eyes prodigy Conor Oberst, Burnside says it's coincidental: "I never envisioned myself as a singer. Things started to click when I quit trying to sound like anyone else."
- Kevin Bronson