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Idaho

One of the most prolific, consistent, and unsung acts classified as slowcore, Los Angeles, California's Idaho is led by four-string guitarist and vocalist Jeff Martin, an unflinching songwriter who gained comparisons to Mark Eitzel (American Music Club), Mark Kozelek (Red House Painters), and Neil Young from the few journalists who paid attention. Despite the lack of recognition from the press and a low profile, Idaho gained a decent-sized underground following through a steady release schedule during the '90s, as well as sporadic touring. Through the 2010s, Idaho alternated between a full-band lineup and a solo outlet for Martin, who also plays drums, bass, and keyboards, and produces his recordings.

Martin and high-school friend John Berry began writing songs together in the '80s, meeting up occasionally throughout the years as something to do without a great deal of seriousness to it. They gave a tape of their work to an acquaintance who knew someone at Caroline, and soon enough, the duo found themselves with a recording contract. They debuted on the smaller Ringers Lactate label, however, with the "Skyscrape" single, and released the The Palms EP on Caroline later in 1993. The full-length Year After Year, with drumming duties split by Berry, Mark Lewis, and Unsane's Vincent Signorelli, was out by the end of the year.

Berry exited for 1994's This Way Out. Martin, joined by associates such as Lewis, Joey Waronker, Dan Seta, and Jeff Zimmitti, performed most of the instrumentation. Since Martin wanted Idaho to remain a touring entity, he enlisted a semi-permanent supporting cast and, in turn, gave up some of the writing responsibilities for 1996's Three Sheets to the Wind -- he had found it impossible to teach others the songs and have them play them the way he wanted. As a result, the bolstered lineup, which featured Lewis, Seta, and Terry Borden, made for Idaho's most muscular album to that point.

The band subsequently reverted back to a duo, with Martin retaining guitarist Seta as Lewis and Terry Borden formed Flotilla. They also signed on with the smaller Buzz label, releasing the less storming The Forbidden EP and Alas in 1997 and 1998, respectively. Martin then set up Idaho Music, thanks to a car accident settlement, and issued the live archival set People Like Us Should Be Stopped and the subdued Hearts of Palm in 2000. Martin continued to lead Idaho, often with involvement from familiar associates -- Berry included -- through the mid-2010s. Studio albums included Levitate (2001), The Lone Gunman (2005), and You Were a Dick (2011). During these years, Martin also assembled We Were Young and Needed the Money and The Broadcast of Disease, compilations of previously unreleased material; contents of the latter release dated back to the '80s. Berry died in his sleep in 2016. ~ Andy Kellman
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: We Were Young And Needed The Money

1. Social Studies

2. Teeth Marks

3. This Day

4. Come Over

5. Shoulder Back

6. Flat Top

7. Breathe

8. A Second Chance

9. Straw Dogs

10. Signs Of Life

11. Much Closer Now

12. Spiral

13. Nothing Wrong

14. Stayin' Out In Front

15. Traces

16. Carefully Turning

17. Drown

x

Track List: Levitate

1. Wondering The Fields

2. 20 Years

3. For Granted

4. On The Shore

5. Levitate (Pt.2)

6. Santa Claus Is Weird

7. Orange

8. Come Back Home

9. Carousel

10. Casa Mia

11. Levitate

x

Track List: People Like Us Should Be Stopped Live, Volume One

1. Intro (Live)

2. Here To Go (Live)

3. Fall Around (Live)

4. Star (Live)

5. Creep (Live)

6. Gone (Live)

7. Tear (Live)

8. God's Green Earth (Live)

9. You Are There (Live)

10. Segue #5 (Live)

11. Segue #6 (Live)

12. Autumn In Paris (Live)

x

Track List: Vieux Carre

1. Levitate

2. To Be The One

3. Shoulder Back

4. Flat Top

5. Rope

6. This Day

7. On The Shore

8. Straw Dogs

10. Carousel

11. Scrawny

13. Before You Go

14. You'll Get To The Bottom Of This

x

Track List: You Were A Dick

1. You Were A Dick

2. Weigh It Down

3. Reminder

4. Impaler

5. Structure

6. The Serpent & The Shadow

7. The Happiest Girl

8. The Space Between

9. Someone To Relate To

10. Up The Hill

11. A Million Reasons

12. The Setting Sun

13. Flames

14. What Was That?

Comments

Report as inappropriate
Fun fact: John Berry‘s father is legendary schlock sitcom actor Ken Berry!! If they had been signed to a hipper label like sub pop or quarterstick they world have gotten a lot more attention from the slowcore community. They certainly deserved it
Report as inappropriate
No kidding. Slowcore is actually supposed to be a musical genre ? Sounds like suckcore
Report as inappropriate
this song sucks
Report as inappropriate
Anyone who makes this kind of music probably isnt a wannabe,
Report as inappropriate
Never heard of these guys. Funny that they're from California. Must be Idahoan wannabees.
Report as inappropriate
mikem073
agree with the comment below about Hearts of Palm. Their best.
Report as inappropriate
what the hell is slowcore? not sure if I like these guys...not thinking so.
Report as inappropriate
Oh, if only your opinion meant anything.
Report as inappropriate
THIS SUCKS! Someone please beat the hell out of this singer!
Report as inappropriate
alas alas alas alas alas alas please pleas alas
Report as inappropriate
kenedamick
Holy CRAP! Vinny from Unsane played on Year After Year? That's nuts.
Report as inappropriate
Hey Pandora, their "Hearts of Palm" album would be a great addition.
Report as inappropriate
bromide01
Slow...core. . . . . . . . . r u l e s . . . . . . . . !
Report as inappropriate
From the above review: "California' s Idaho"
I love that
Report as inappropriate
very droll.
Report as inappropriate
how come i never hear good music on the radio?

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