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Thunder Bay Down Under Summertime Spin Series – The Superjesus

Here is the usual prologue.

My blogger pal Deke over at Thunder Bay had a cool Northern Hemisphere Summertime Series between July and August.

Each week, he wrote about albums he spun during the summer.

Well, the real Earth summer is between December, January and February in the Southern Hemisphere.

So the good act that Thunder Bay is, boarded a Qantas plane, landed in Sydney, survived 14 days quarantine in a Sydney hotel and is finally here to present the “Thunder Bay Down Under Summertime Series”.

The Superjesus are an Australian rock band formed in Adelaide in late 1994.

Their debut album, “Sumo” released in 1998, peaked at No. 2 on the ARIA Albums Chart. They received high rotation on national youth alternative music radio station, Triple J and the album got a Platinum certification in Australia.

It was recorded at Triclops Sound Studios, Atlanta, with Matt Serletic (Collective Soul) producing and Jeff Tomei (Smashing Pumpkins, Hole) as audio engineer.

Guitarist Chris Tennent and vocalist Sarah McLeod wrote the songs and what you get is a rock album with some nu Metal influences and melodic vocals. It’s a shame this songwriting partnership ended when their personal relationship ended and Tennent also left the band.

And Tennent more or less disappeared from the music business after his departure but he left a legacy of some great riffs.

The other members in the band on the album are Paul Berryman on drums and Stuart Rudd on bass. Berryman also had success with the band Faker in the 2000’s.

It starts off with “Down Again” and a head banging bass and drum groove. The guitar plays some arpeggios to decorate before exploding into the main riff.

Then the verse riffs. Heavy and brilliant while McLeod sings about wasting a lot of opportunities.

I was alone ’til i thought it was better that way

You spend too much time alone, then there is nothing else but being alone.

“Saturation” is a interesting mixture riff wise, combining a lot of blues ideas with a Beatles/Oasis like progression.

“Now And Then” is an acoustic like romp merging bits that could have come from a Collective Soul or Jewel album.

“Ashes” has great riffs throughout. One of my favorites.

“I’m Stained” has an instrumental intro that goes for about 90 seconds and feels like those driving kind of songs, hitting the open road with the window down and a main riff that reminds me of “Shine” from Collective Soul.

“Milk” closes the album with a clean tone riff inspired by Seattle bands like Alice In Chains and Pearl Jam.

After the success of “Sumo” and the departure of guitarist Chris Tennent, the band went in a more radio rock friendly sound, victims of their own success to deliver a success-conscious follow-up, with “Jet Age” in 2001 and “Rock Music” in 2003.

But it was “Sumo” that gave them the victory lap.

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