10 Songs, 51 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

York Blvd. was Acetone's final release before singer Richie Lee's suicide. Their fifth studio album remains a favorite among fans as it contrasts higher production values with a return to the bare-bones, song-architecture of their 1993 debut Cindy. The opening "Things Are Gonna Be Alright" is a slow-burner that sets the tone with Mark Lightcap's lazy licks flickering like a flame under Lee's tastefully simplistic bass lines while drummer Steve Hadley's brushes on the snare and cymbals provide texture and shimmering resonance. The catchy and cool "Wonderful World" was the closest thing that Acetone had to a radio hit with its up-tempo chorus and hushed harmonies that make way for Lightcap approximating a Crazy Horse crunch on his guitar solo. Up until this album the Los Angeles trio had garnered many comparisons to Low (because of their nod-out tempos) and Spiritualized (for their ability to turn Velvet Underground- inspired tones into panoramic drones), but the twangy "Like I Told You" found Acetone's former flirtations with California country rock on 1995's I Guess I Would manifesting into their own original sound.

EDITORS’ NOTES

York Blvd. was Acetone's final release before singer Richie Lee's suicide. Their fifth studio album remains a favorite among fans as it contrasts higher production values with a return to the bare-bones, song-architecture of their 1993 debut Cindy. The opening "Things Are Gonna Be Alright" is a slow-burner that sets the tone with Mark Lightcap's lazy licks flickering like a flame under Lee's tastefully simplistic bass lines while drummer Steve Hadley's brushes on the snare and cymbals provide texture and shimmering resonance. The catchy and cool "Wonderful World" was the closest thing that Acetone had to a radio hit with its up-tempo chorus and hushed harmonies that make way for Lightcap approximating a Crazy Horse crunch on his guitar solo. Up until this album the Los Angeles trio had garnered many comparisons to Low (because of their nod-out tempos) and Spiritualized (for their ability to turn Velvet Underground- inspired tones into panoramic drones), but the twangy "Like I Told You" found Acetone's former flirtations with California country rock on 1995's I Guess I Would manifesting into their own original sound.

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Customer Reviews

5 out of 5

11 Ratings

For Shame

Dj Baby Nagi,

A fantastic band, that never made it as far as they should have. If you've never heard these guys, they're a real gem. Strongly influenced by VU, surf rock, jazz, country psychedelia. Sweet harmonies. Tremendous 3 piece. For newbies try Wonderful World and It's A Lie.

About Acetone

Largely passed by in the alternative music sweepstakes of the mid-'90s, Acetone pursued indie rock with influences from two of their Southern California forebears, the Beach Boys and Gram Parsons, with plenty of the Velvet Underground thrown in as well. Officially formed in 1992 by guitarist Mark Lightcap, bassist Richie Lee and drummer Steve Hadley, the group had actually existed as early as 1987, when the trio began playing around Los Angeles. After working for several years with a succession of vocalists, the group decided to keep it a threesome. After just a few months of recording demos, the band signed to the up-and-coming Vernon Yard subsidiary of Virgin Records (also the home of Low and the Verve) and in 1993 released their debut album Cindy, a collision of aggressive neo-psychedelia with pastoral harmonies reminiscent of the Velvets' third LP. Though Acetone toured in a quite visible role as support for the Verve, the album sputtered under a glut of similar-sounding releases. By 1995, the group had turned in a new direction, translating their affinity for roots rock and country into I Guess I Would, a seven-track mini-LP of inspired cover tracks, including the Flying Burrito Brothers' "Juanita" and the Kris Kristofferson chestnut "Border Lord." Though alternative rock was beginning to hit the trails of their roots-rocking ancestors, the album again failed to connect with listeners. The trio then recorded their second full-length, If You Only Knew, which charted a course between the aggression of the first album and the twang of I Guess I Would. Dropped from Vernon Yard in 1997, however, Acetone moved to the independent Vapor Records for their third, self-titled album. York Blvd. followed three years later. The album was critically acclaimed as a creative high point of the band's career, but it was followed by tragedy when Lee died after an apparent suicide on July 23, 2001, less than a year after its release. ~ John Bush

  • ORIGIN
    Los Angeles, CA
  • GENRE
    Rock
  • FORMED
    1992

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