285 West Broadway
New York City, New York 10013

price : $20 advance, $25
date : Feb-03-2006 (Fri)
door : 7:00PM
show : 8:00pm
genre : Rock
age : 21 and over
support: TBD
Music being one of the most abstract of the popular arts, it is hard to know exactly why some bands succeed and others fail. This much we do know: The Samples was once a band teetering toward failures. It was the early ?90s, and The Samples were playing competent post-folk rock reggae in the tradition of The Police and Neil Young. And in the post-folk rock tradition, the group was widely ignored. After a two-month affiliation with a major label, The Samples had its contract revoked. The band was deemed not only hopelessly un-commercial but also hopelessly uninteresting.
Lead singer-songwriter Sean Kelly had a degree in nothing, only odd construction and painting jobs to fall back on, but as he says now, ?What else was I supposed to do?? Instead of sending out resumes, he wrote many heartfelt songs about ongoing reflections of love and celebration, ? The irony of human grief and hope, "Feel Us Shaking". Kelly kept on writing and shuffled the lineup, and in one of those moments that make up for all the Rock Brain children in the world.
The Samples stumbled onto a sound of its own. The Last Drag, the 1993 reanimation of The Samples, was a brilliantly minimalist rock album about love (or the lack of it). It was hardened but not ironic, tense but not jagged, smart but not so smart that Kelly couldn?t sing, ?Every Time!? to get his point across. The songs were about small things?girlfriends, Marilyn Monroe and little silver rings?but they contained a multitude of emotions, and the music was so melodic that listeners were reminded just how great rock could be.
CD titles and songwriting that make up The Samples musical journey are as emotional and pure as the first Colorado snow. Titles such as The Samples self the titled Blue CD, Underwater People, The Last Drag, Autopilot, No Room, Here and Somewhere Else, Outpost, The Tan Mule, Light House Rocket, Transmissions from the Sea of Tranquility, Sparta, Landing On The Sidewalk, Return To Earth, Anthology In Motion, Seventeen (CD and DVD) and the most recent Black and White, unpretentiously captivate the listener.
Word spread, and 2004?s equally good Black and White enlarged the cult. As with R.E.M in the late ?80s, one senses that The Samples could be not just a distinctive band but the rare distinctive band that is also popular. Remarking on the 12 tracks on the Black and White CD, Kelly said, ?There?s great melodies going on in a lot of them. My favorite songs are minimal?Rocking in the Free World, Let It Be, Comfortably Numb. Those songs face the world, but they do it with just a few instruments. I can?t explain why,? he says, ?but that?s really all you need.?

Added by metrohybrid on November 7, 2005