Don’t let the name fool you, ladies and gentlemen, The Pathetic Sounds of Detroit is anything but, well…pathetic.
Instead, The Pathetic Sounds of Detroit, created by Joshua Woodcock and Lee Majors, is intended to be a follow-up to Jack White’s The Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit, the 2001 compilation album that achieved great acclaim and featured many of the biggest up and coming bands of Detroit at the time, including The White Stripes, The Von Bondies, and The Detroit Cobras.
So, their goal is simple: showcase the local up and coming bands and artists of Detroit in a way that they haven’t been heard before. Joshua and Lee wanted to find the local artists that have never been produced on vinyl or who didn’t have the means to produce on their own.
That doesn’t sound too pathetic now, does it? Then where does the “pathetic” name come from? Joshua wanted a name that would play tribute to Jack White’s project, but also not make the album seem larger than it was, so he spoke with Ben Blackwell, one of the two drummers in the Detroit-based band, The Dirtbombs (and nephew of Jack White and producer at Third Man Records), for inspiration.
Joshua adds “I really liked it…it’s very ironic…Sometimes less is more, and in today’s music scene, that’s a great message to get across.”
Joshua and Lee began researching local bands and seeing them play live over the summer of 2012. With all of the talent located in Metro Detroit, they were faced with a tough decision to make, so they decided to pick the bands that would go together in a cohesive way, rather than just a compilation of songs. And in the end, there were 11 bands left.
Each of the bands featured can be found below. Ch-ch-check it out…
The recording process lasted from early Fall 2012 to March 2013. Joshua decided to give the album a “timeless” feel, “We want someone to listen to it 10 years from now and not be able to place when it was recorded and just enjoy the music for what it is: a snapshot of what’s going on now in the Detroit music scene,” he said. Inspired by Jack White’s The Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit, each artist was recorded on a ¼” analog tape, all on the same recording equipment, with the same producer, so they would achieve that cohesive sound they were aiming for.
Joshua didn’t want the project to just be the bands thrown together on an album, but really a glimpse of what’s really happening now, so he filmed the recording process. Find that video here.
The Pathetic Sounds of Detroit will be released on June 8th, 2013, at PJ’s Lager House in Detroit. Ten of the eleven acts will play on two stages, and the $7 entrance fee will include a copy of the 12” vinyl.
The Ashleys – “Blonde Anita”
The ILL Itches – “Hallelujah”
The Boy Wonders – “Living in France”
Citizen Smile – “People I’ve Done Wrong”
The HandGrenades – “Her Eyes”
Nam Kook & the Typhoon – “Don’t Think Less of Me”
The Bad Mics – “I Feel Good”
Hit Society – “She Said”
White Shag – “Not Me”
Patrick Davy & the Ghosts – “It’s Never Easy”
Emily Rose – “Funfair”