Do you ever wonder what Kurt Cobain would have done if he had found Jesus? Well, just take a spin of this disc and find out. The opening song, "Drug of Choice," features a very Nirvana-like grunge sound with the lead singer sounding remarkably similar to Kurt Cobain. Later in the album he tries to execute some Eddie Vedder (Pearl Jam) phrasing, but it doesn't quite work out. A female vocalist takes over on a couple songs, and sings backup on a couple more. This is a nice change to the usually male dominated grunge sound, and her vocals aren't far from Leigh Nash (Sixpence None the Richer) in style and quality.
While the vocals are one the strongest aspect of this demo, the music itself isn't bad either. The grunge elements (and we're not talking post-modern grunge either) are well done--this isn't completely grunge, but almost. There's more keyboard, more wah-wah distortion on the guitars, and some slower less intense tracks. These guys could have come out right alongside Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, and Nirvana, and would have made a good showing of themselves. The lyrics are excellent. There is a story of a drunk who finds Christ in "DMS," a challenge to look at the friends we keep in "Like Demise," a reminder that God is always with us in "Downward," and three more nicely penned tracks.
The weakest part by far is the production and the drum line. The production is muddy, raw, and leaves a lot of the flaws in the music while the drums are just plain weak. The production I can excuse for an indie, but the problems with the drum tracks are just plain inexcusable. That aside, if you aren't scared away by indie quality production, Whistle for Fly is worth checking out. Give it a couple spins, and you'll be hooked.
By Mark Aylor