Say Good Bye Girl, Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey: The Promise Ring

The Promise Ring in Concert

With their pop-punk approach to music The Promise Ring, along with such similar groups as Jimmy Eat World, Braid, Sunny Day Real Estate and The Get-up Kids helped to bring emo out from the punk underground to a wider indie music audience.

Formed in 1995 the Milwaukee based band included guitarist/singer Davey vonBohlen (Cap’n Jazz), guitarist Jason Gnewikow (None Left Standing), bassist Scott Beschta, and drummer Dan Didier (Ceilishrine).

Their debut single, “Watertown Plank”/”Mineral Point,” was released on the small Foresight label, after which they signed with indie label Jade Tree. Their first release for Jade Tree was 1996’s three-song EP Falsetto Keeps Time, followed shortly afterwards with a split 7″ with Texas Is the Reason, that featured the track “E. Texas Ave.” Developing a following from touring and word of mouth Jade Tree released their debut album 30° Everywhere in 1996. An underground sensation the album also served to bring the band to the attention of some indie rock publications.

1997 found the band touring as a supporting act, re-packaging and re-releasing their early singles as The Horse Latitudes, and following their tour re-entering the studio and recording their sophomore album Nothing Feels Good. Poppier then 30° Everywhere the album received generally good reviews and helped to expand the bands indie audience. Following the album’s release Scott Beschta left the band and was replaced on the subsequent supporting tour by Tim Burton. The tour nearly proved tragic as the group’s van flipped over during a snowstorm, with most of them ending up in the hospital, and Gnewikow, for a time, in critical but stable condition. Burton who had broken his arm in the crash, but hadn’t been working out, was sacked in early 1998 and replaced by Scott Schoenbeck.

The band quickly released the three song ep Boys & Girls in 1998 as they worked on their third album, 1999’s Very Emergency. More pop than punk Very Emergency

“was the subject of a backlash among their earlier fans

but it helped to attract and build upon their indie audience and also garnered some much needed college radio airplay.

1999 found vonBohlen and Didier collaborating on an acoustic-oriented side project band named Vermont and releasing “We Only Have Each Other in the Night,” a split single with Ida, as well as their debut album, Living Together.

The Electric Pink ep was released in 2000, but that year also saw vonBohlen diagnosed with a brain tumor. Thought it proved benign the operation to remove it and a subsequent infection kept him in the hospital and the group off the road.

Severing ties with Jade Tree the group signed with Epitaph subsidiary Anti who released the bands last album, 2002’s Wood/Water. Influenced by the roots-pop efforts of Wilco the album with it’s “introspective tone and shimmering atmosphere” marked a drastic departure from previous albums. Although both the album and the bands new direction met with favorable reviews the band chose to disband in October 2002.

DISCOGRAPHY

Singles

“E. Texas Ave.” -The Promise Ring/Texas Is The Reason Split 7″ (Jade Tree), 1996
“A Picture Postcard”/”Saturday”/”Scenes From Parisian LifeFalsetto Keeps Time (7″) (Jade Tree), 1996
“Get On The Floor”/”Size Of Your Life” (Anti/Epitaph Promo), 2002
“Stop Playing Guitar”/”You Only Tell Me Love Me When You’re Drunk” (7″)
“Stop Playing Guitar” (Anti), 2002
“Stop Playing Guitar”/”Get On The Floor” (CD Single) (Anti/ Foreign Leisure), 2002

EPs

Boys & Girls (Jade Tree Records), 1998
Electric Pink (Jade Tree Records), 2000

Albums

30° Everywhere (Jade Tree Records), 1996
The Horse Latitudes (Jade Tree Records), 1997
Nothing Feels Good (Jade Tree Records), 1997
Very Emergency (Jade Tree Records), 1999
Wood/Water (ANTI Records), 2002

Compilations

“12 Sweaters Red”Ground Rule Double (CD, 2xLP) (Divot / Actionboy Records), 1995
“Ooh Do I Love You” – Ooh Do I Love You (CD) (Core for Care Records), 1996
“Pink Chimneys”
(Don’t Forget To) Breathe (CD, LP) (Crank!), 1997 )
“Gouge Away”
Where Is My Mind? A Tribute to the Pixies (Glue Factory Records), 1999
“You Are So Unreal”
Metroschifter – Encapulated (Doghouse Records), 2000
“Why Did Ever We Meet”
Nowcore! The Punk Rock Evolution (CD) (K-Tel), 1999
“Emergency! Emergency!”
Location Is Everything Vol. 1 (Jade Tree Records), 2002

30° Everywhere

Playing Time: 36 minutes 51 seconds

30° Everywhere

1. Everywhere in Denver (2:41)
2. Red Paint (2:55)
3. Heart of a Broken Story (2:45)
4. Scenes From France (2:32)
5. Anne You Will Sing (2:40)
6. My Firetower Flame (3:20)
7. Between Pacific Coasts (1:51)
8. A Picture Postcard (3:10)
9. Somebody’s Done For (4:15)
10. The Sea of Cortez (5:04)
11. Run Down the Waterfall (3:09)
12. We Don’t Like Romance (2:29)

Buy 30° Everywhere from Amazon.com

Buy 30° Everywhere from Jade Tree Records

Nothing Feels Good

Playing Time: 34 minutes 39 seconds

Nothing Feels Good

1. Is This On? (3:38)
2. Perfect Lines (2:27)
3. Red & Blue Jeans (2:55)
4. Why Did We Ever Meet (4:06)
5. Make Me a Chevy (2:35)
6. How Nothing Feels (1:13)
7. A Broken Tenor (3:26)
8. Raspberry Rush (2:38)
9. Nothing Feels Good (2:03)
10. Pink Chimneys (2:28)
11. B is for Bethlehem (3:16)
12. Forget Me (3:54)

Buy Nothing Feels Good from Amazon.com

Buy Nothing Feels Good from Jade Tree Records

Very Emergency

Playing Time: 35 minutes 11 seconds

Very Emergency

1. Happiness Is All the Rage (2:55)
2. Emergency! Emergency! (2:56)
3. The Deep South (3:43)
4. Happy Hour (3:06)
5. Things Just Getting Good (4:45)
6. Living Around (4:06)
7. Jersey Shore (2:40)
8. Skips a Beat (Over You) (2:01)
9. Arms and Danger (3:23)
10. All of My Everythings (5:36)

Buy Very Emergency from Amazon.com

Buy Very Emergency from Jade Tree Records

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