I took a completely "sound-unheard" chance on Gnome's debut Six-Hi Surprise Tower which I believe came in 1992. If I remember correctly, the band christened the album title after an item in a dessert/confectionery mail-order catalog. I just hope it wasn't of the fruitcake variety...anyway. C/Z positioned Gnome as "bubble-grunge." While they weren't nearly as flailing or wired as Nirvana and Soundgarden, Gnome possesed a lively sense of abandon all the same, not to mention pop-savvy. I always thought they gravitated more to the power pop, end of the spectrum, and in fact Jon Auer of the Posies shared mixing duties on the album with Phil Ek. Gnome were if anything, unique. To this day I'm still trying to discern what they owe their sound to, but I think singer/guitarist Loren Evans is the biggest part of the equation. Six-Hi... is a quietly charismatic album if there ever was one, and if you're anything like me, you won't truly sense it's brilliance until long after your initial listen.
The "13 Family" single on Blossom Records predates the album, I'm estimating by a year (no copyright date provided for either this or Six-Hi). "13 Family" is a different recording than the LP version, and I can't help but wonder if early incarnations of the album's other nine cuts are languishing in a shoebox somewhere. The b-side, "Dog Energy" is exclusive to this wax.
Gnome went onto release a second album in 1993, Fiberglass, and soon after a single, Pop Cred./Punk Sens. The band later recorded an ep titled Juicy Mommy, which never saw the light of day : ( Loren, or if anyone else related to the band reads this, please get in touch!
Six-Hi Surprise Tower
01. On the House
02. 13 Family
03. Up To
05. Go Go Go
10. Pig Roast
A. 13 Family
B. Dog Energy
Six-Hi Surprise Tower: http://netkups.com/?d=1e8851c292e65