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The Great Compromise

The Junior Varsity

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Album Review

The Junior Varsity's indie debut features a big and dense sound, messy on the surface but tightly crafted beneath. Singer Asa Dawson has one of those endearingly regular-guy Midwestern voices which sometimes sounds a bit like Robert Smith ("Introduction to the Faint Remembrance of a Dead and Dying Dream") and sometimes a bit like Freedy Johnston ("Peter Cottontail and the Demise of the Carrot Tree"). The band itself isn't above indulging a prog rock tendency every once in a while; the opening bars of "I Sang a Song to Be Sung," for example, almost sound like an outtake from Rush's Moving Pictures. That said, and as you may have already noticed, the band also has a less-than-endearing affinity for cutesy song titles, but luckily, you don't have to listen to a song title. Recommended.


Formed: 2002 in Springfield, IL

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Emo rock outfit the Junior Varsity originally came together in 2002 around guitarist Andy Wildrick. An EP, various shows around central Illinois, and several lineup changes later, the group released their first full-length, The Great Compromise, on British Records. By this time, the Junior Varsity comprised Wildrick, Chris Birch (drums), Serigo Coronado (guitar), Asa Dawson (vocals/bass), and Nick Dodson (keyboards). The album received good reviews, prompting the guys to quit college to concentrate...
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The Great Compromise, The Junior Varsity
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