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Album Review

These kids look so young in the inner sleeve photo that accompanies Discography, a museum of an album that preserves not only the memory of a band — Maximillian Colby — and its music, but also of an era. In 1994 and 1995 when these tracks were recorded (as demos, for a 7" on Nervous Wreck Kids, one with Rye Coalition, a Whirled Records compilation, and a split with Shotmaker), Drew Ringo, Dave Nesmith, Bob Baynor, and Tom Richards were students at James Madison University. Though not widely known beyond Virginia, the experimental hardcore music produced by this inconspicuous foursome was far ahead of its time. Picking up where Slint left off, these contemporaries of Hoover and June of 44 predated Mogwai with unhinged, intricately composed songs that are clean and mellow one moment, brash, raw, and jagged the next. All of the tracks on Discography seem simultaneously grounded in the innovation of mid-'90s post-punk and absolutely timeless. From the meandering, Slint-like repetition of "New Jello," with its characteristic epic explosion halfway through the song, to the on-again-off-again clatter of "Sifelaver," the distorted, psychedelic rant of "Coughfin'," and the Jawbox riffs and ripped-apart vocals of "Bluestone," Discography is vital, thrilling, and risky. Maximillian Colby concluded before its time with the sad and sudden death of bassist Bob Baynor. But this long-awaited collection is an indispensable record and a true tribute to an influential musical force.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

The sadly obscure band Maximillian Colby was on the forefront of post punk music descended from East Coast hardcore. Like Jawbox, the band managed to match an aggressive clamor with somber melodies and became legendary to a small group of devoted fans. Maximillian Colby began on the campus of James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia in the early 90s with Dave Nesmith and Drew Ringo on guitar and vocals, Bob Baynor on bass and vocals and Tom Richards on drums. Their first 7" on Washington...
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