Judged purely by the number of downloads accrued, one of my biggest successes to date was an album titled The Mermaid's Parade, by an obscuro shoegazer band from the mid-90s, Ultra Cindy. I posted it in April of 2008, and thus far it's reached almost 500 happy recipients. In fact, exposure to the album on Wilfully Obscure made it's way back to Ultra Cindy-alumni, guitarist Joshua Kraemer (yes, that's him on the left), who is currently involved in a musical project commonly referred to as Pan Am Down. In fact, he was kind enough to submit some of his music to me, some of which I'm posting tonight.
For all intents and purposes, Joshua is Pan Am Down, particularly on his recent solo album, One, featuring the accompaniment of additional musicians on only two of it's ten selections. The largely acoustic-driven album is as stark and contemplative as it is palatable, often capturing the vibe exuded by Bob Mould's earlier solo records, not to mention the unrelated Evergreen Trio, who I featured here a few months ago. For live performances, Pam Am Down is fleshed out with a full lineup, one that apparently carried over to the studio for an extremely limited four-cut ep, The Orange Avenue Sessions. The disk kicks off with the full-tilt, indie guitar stunner "A Walk in the Former Yugoslavia," sounding akin to the best damn thing Sebadoh never got around to recording, circa Bubble & Scrap or Bakery. The remainder of Orange Avenue is quieter by comparison, but equally inviting. In addition to the ep, I'm also tacking on one of my favorite cuts from One, "Tomorrow's Silence." If you like what you hear, the album is readily available on a shiny aluminum disk. You can inquire about obtaining one by dropping Mr. Kraemer a line via Pan Am's Myspace page. Enjoy.
01. A Walk in the Former Yugoslavia
02. Winter Near a Great Lake
03. Sweet Wishes From Afar
04. Seems Like the Times
plus: Tomorrow's Silence (from One CD)
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