Over the years, guitarist Steve Turner has appeared on countless recordings with Seattle-based bands -- his best-known being Mudhoney, but also Green River, Monkeywrench, and the Thrown Ups, among others. However, Turner never issued a solo release -- something he corrected in 2003 with the release of Searching for Melody. Although Turner will forever be synonymous with garage rock and grunge (after all, he co-penned one of the genre's all-time classics, "Touch Me I'm Sick"), Turner's solo debut is the opposite of what you'd expect. Instead of continuing with "the vintage stomp box sound," Turner focuses on singer/songwriter-esque material. Backing Turner (who also handles vocals) is his longtime Mudhoney bandmate, Dan Peters, on drums, as well as his brief bandmate in Green River, Stone Gossard, on bass, in addition to multi-instrumentalist Johnny Sangster. Stripped-down tunes that are almost in a roots rock vein are the end result, especially such tracks as "Living Through the Mistakes," "I Want You in My Arms," and "You, My Girl." And since Mudhoney have always had bluesy elements in their music (an element that most fans tended to glance over), the self-explanatory "Nothing But the Blues" shouldn't come as a surprise. Steve Turner's solo debut certainly won't be mistaken for a Mudhoney release, but this was obviously his intention -- to pursue a new musical avenue. As a result, Searching for Melody is a very pleasant surprise.
Searching for Melody Review
by Greg Prato