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Revolutions Per Minute

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Album Review

Seattle singer/songwriter Jason Trachtenburg released his solo debut CD in 2000 on Orange Recordings. His quirky songs and bizarre live performances instantly garnered him notoriety in Seattle and around the indie rock world. The music is simple and bubbly, dancing over Trachtenburg's offbeat vocals and playful lyrics. With topics ranging from politics ("Hierarchy Rock") to automobiles ("Used Cars by Bob") to toothpaste ("Much Has Been Told/Peppermint Tube"), his approach is easily comparable to Ween, Jonathan Richman, and Wally Pleasant. His good-natured and whimsical approach to music is most evident on tracks like "Ginseng High School March" and "Whatever Happened to You." The songs' playfulness could easily make them candidates for children's TV show theme songs. The songs are simple, goofy without being excessive, and most of the tracks fade to black before they become tiresome. The 12-song Revolutions Per Minute showcases Trachtenburg's poppy and good-natured musical vision. It's an ambitious and cheerful alternative to the murky and melancholy music that is often associated with Seattle. Revolutions Per Minute was produced by Chris Ballew of Presidents of the United States of America and Conrad Uno at Egg Studios. Trachtenburg performs guitar, piano, and vocals on the disc, while Ballew adds drums, bass, guitar, and piano. Mark Goldberg checks in on electric guitar, while Hugh Sutton adds accordion to some tracks and James "Bluz" Johnson offers violin on some songs.


Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

Jason Trachtenburg's musical career began in the late '80s in New York City, where he was part of the Lower East Side's anti-folk and performance-art scenes. In 1992, he moved to Austin, TX, where he worked with Daniel Johnston on music and video projects. He also formed the band the Pancakes With Cheese while in Austin. He relocated yet again to the Pacific Northwest in 1993 to collaborate with Chris Ballew of Presidents of the United States of America. Ballew produced Trachtenburg's early recordings...
Full bio

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