Friday, May 4, 2018

Forgotten Fridays: Frogpond - Safe Ride Home

Forgotten Fridays is an occasional feature here at If It’s Too Loud... where we go back and find the lost records of our glory days. We played these on our college radio shows, put them on countless mix tapes, and then forgot they existed. We go back and remind you of their existence, and help decide if they were any good.

I recently discovered I could use the Google to look up old top 30 lists for my old college radio station, so there went a huge amount of productivity. It brought back this insane flood of memories of bands and albums I adored but had forgotten about. But then I saw the name Frogpond, which did not sound familiar at all. Their album Safe Ride Home was up in the top three albums of the week way back in 1999, but the name didn't sound familiar at all. I decided to do some research.

Frogpond formed in 1994 in Warrensburg, Missouri. They took local opening slots for Everclear and the Toadies. Mike Mills became a fan and Frogpond played R.E.M.'s tour wrap party for the Monster tour. Art Alexakis from Everclear produced their 1996 debut, Count to Ten. 1999's Safe Ride Home was the band's second, and last, album, and featured Louise Post from Veruca Salt on backing vocals for "Whatever." Frongpond broke up in 2000.

Safe Ride Home is a pretty great album. It has that sound that was fairly big in the mid 1990's with bands like Veruca Salt and Letters to Cleo, and seems bigger now with current favorites Weakened Friends and Speedy Ortiz. It's a female fronted band with loud, crunchy guitars and plenty of fuzz, but with insanely catchy hooks and pop melodies that we never would have admitted to back then. It's late 90's power pop that hearkens back to grunge just slightly. This all fits right into what I was into back in 1999, and, to be fair, 2018.

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