|Released January 2003|
Bandees look back and ahead
REVIEWS - January 10, 2003
"Neverland" SLD Music
Bandees upped their periscope for their new CD and took a long look
backward. And what did they see, this Edgewater-based pop-rock duo
composed of husband-and-wife multi-instrumentalists Stephen and Patricia
saw an eclectic, clever, semi-arty body of pop-rock stretching all the way
back to the dawn of MTV, where Stephen and his band Novo Combo landed with
a Top-5 video for their song "Animation Generation."
Bandees then trained their periscope on the future. The result is "Neverland,"
a combo of new songs and old, some revamped and some not. The Bandees are
not claiming this is a greatest-hits retrospective, but "Neverland"
feels that way because the 16-track CD contains so many cool mondo-rock
songs -- from Devo-like new wave to delicate, exquisitely crafted ballads
that seem like a Rossetti Pre-Raphaelite painting cast in sound.
finds Stephen and Patricia Ann going back two decades for a remake of
"Up Periscope," that 1982 hit he penned with Novo Combo. The duo
make the song both familiar and fresh thanks to vaguely new wave-ish
guitars, an insistent cello riff and a melodic hook far more contagious
than any of today's boy-pop stuff.
song and others -- "Psycho Boy," the flute-accented "Nobody
Likes Me" -- point up an important rock music history lesson, so
listen up boys and girls: There is a type of guitar rock that's
post-classic, pre-grunge and pre-"nu-metal," and that's every
bit as at-home in the new millennium as the Limp Creed System of a Down
Bizkit folks. And the Bandees are masters at such pop-rock.
you mad or just insane?" Patricia Ann coos over slinky guitars on
"Psycho Boy," "You possess a major damaged brain. You might
think that you're a spy. Geek boy, you're not FBI."
the Bandees go the full new-wave, pogo-pop route with "Pretty, Pretty
Dr. Smith," detour for some Beatles 'n' Badfinger-style piano rock on
"You Are My Baby," and deftly crossbreed Tom Petty and
rockabilly on "Kids Go Out and Play."
more: lots of gorgeous, exquisite ballads fueled by Patricia Ann's flute,
oboe or penny whistle, and guest musician David Turner's cello -- ballads
that meander from the delicate, baroque "Lily of the Lake" to
the Celtic-flavored title track.
many textures aren't as scattershot as they may seem. Rather, the Bandees
are chameleon-like in the manner of David Bowie -- artfully so, and
confidently so. It's time for the Bandees periscope to come up.
REVIEWS – August 2003
By Sara Wilsey [Connections Magazine]
Bandees, "Neverland" Rating: ***** (out of 5)
too bad more people don’t check out local bands. They’re missing out
on some really good music. One such example is the Bandees’ Neverland.
The duo of Stephen and Patricia Dees have put out some
top-notch professional records in the past and this one is no exception.
With a jangly pop sound reminiscent in part of the Beatles and
Spiders from Mars-era Bowie, the songs are well-crafted, recorded and
mixed. Neverland is another first-rate effort, but we expected
nothing less. "
CD REVIEWS – July
By MELANIE CAMPBELL [Backstage Pass Magazine, Central Florida’s East Coast, Assistant Editor
Bandees, "Neverland" SLD Music
Once upon a time, we wrote up Edgewater’s the Bandees, calling them “pure pop for the new millennium.” It was an apt description then, and it still holds true today on the latest release, Neverland. This time around, the Bandees—Steven and Patricia Dees, and a stellar cast of guest musicians—settle into a somewhat simpler, yet still musically-multi-faceted groove. The Dees opt for a bit less whimsy and stick to more basic themes this time around. Check out the plaintive, yet fun romp through “Zachary,” a tale told from a little guy’s perspective; “Is It Something I Said,” with lyrics chock full of the insecurity we’ve all felt in a love relationship; and the utterly simplistic brilliance of “Nobody Likes Me,” a sardonic take on homelessness, as well as an excellent reworking of “Up Periscope” from Steven Dees’ Novo Combo days, the 18 tunes on Neverland continue the Bandees’ tradition of building accessible, Beatle-esque pop with thoughtful lyrics and just enough musical quirk to keep even the most jaded listener’s attention.
REVIEWS - November 3, 2003
music make a better world? The answer is a resounding Yes. Music can
both literally slow the heart and calm the nerves, as well as excite and
convey ideas. The Bandees seem to have rediscovered it's the
songwriting that matters, the writing combined with various musical
influences and arrangements, reassures us all that there is still hope.
A duo tightly in sync with each other, their commitment to excellence is
evident in every song. Perhaps it would be asking too much to expect
this CD release to usher in a whole new era in music, but at the very
least, the Bandees should finally start to get recognized as a
truly creative and talented band. The Bandees deliver in every
sense of the word.
diverse sounds explode with energy as well as soothe the savage soul.
Without sounding the least bit contrived, they incorporate musical
styles from Rock, Pop, Folk, Celtic, Jazz and even a little Rock-a-Billy
makes its way into the unmistakable Bandees style.
The Bandees are Stephen and
Patricia Ann Dees; both share the vocals and play several instruments.
The two have clear, clean voices that blend so well, they seem to melt
together to become a single, larger voice. Stephen’s song lyrics are
delightful to read even without the music. Dees’ writes in a
variety of styles, and each song stands alone. Complimenting their
sound, guest musician, David Turner adds to the depth of this CD as he
lends his haunting and emotional cello accompaniment to many of the
fans of great, eclectic pop rock this
CD is a must have.