Tsunami fans learned of Geek retroactively, and I stand guilty as anyone. Tsunami were one of many indie propositions in the '90s that encouraged genuine fandom. As if three albums (Deep End, The Hearts Tremolo, and Brilliant Mistake) and a copious number of singles and comp tracks weren't enough, some of us were compelled to investigate the back pages of it's architects, not the least of which chanteuse and prime mover Jenny Toomey. There were no less than three Tsunami precursors that involved Ms. Toomey: Slack, Choke and Geek. Of this monosyllabic trifecta, the last of that bunch was the most visible, having released a cassette album, Hammer, as part of the 1992 Simple Machine Records Tool series. Recorded in 1990, that fifteen song tape was an ambitious, but not all-the-way-there endeavor, functioning if anything else as a springboard for Toomey's soaring and throaty timbre.
However, before Hammer came Herasure, yet another cassette-only release, this one dating from 1988. Equally as DIY as it's follow-up, Herasure benefits from surprisingly better fidelity, creativity, and hook-savvy charm. The short of it all is that Hammer sounds more like a debut, but all comparisons aside this six song artifact houses some really stunning tunes and bears a sophisticated prowess than it's nascent copyright date might otherwise suggest. In fact, Toomey coveys some of the most affecting melodies of her career on "Anthem (of Sleeping Mama)" and the unsettling title cut. Derek Denckla's chiming guitar fills are no slouch either.
Incidentally, I posted a cassette rip of Tsunami's '91 demo, Cow Arcade about three months ago, which is still available here.
04. anthem (of sleeping mama)
05. polly breedlove