Under the Weather

Under the Weather

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If Under the Weather's self-titled debut EP reminds you of the Sloppy Meat Eaters, it's no coincidence. Under the Weather's lead singer/lyricist Josh Chambers, aka "Sloppy Josh," is the former lead singer/lyricist of the Sloppy Meat Eaters -- and lead guitarist John Elwell, aka "Sloppy John," is also an ex-Meat Eater. Chambers, in fact, could have easily called this band the Sloppy Meat Eaters and gotten away with it. But because drummer Kevin Highfield, aka "Sloppy Kevin" (a founding member) had left the band in 2002, Chambers felt it was best to put the Meat Eaters' name to rest and market Under the Weather as a new band. After Highfield's departure, the band no longer felt like the Sloppy Meat Eaters to Chambers. However, this EP isn't a radical departure from the Meat Eaters' work; with Under the Weather, Chambers continues to thrive on introspective lyrics and favor a punk-pop/emo approach. But at the same time, Under the Weather isn't a carbon copy of Chambers' former band. They sounds a bit more polished, and some of the songs on this CD are slightly heavier -- especially "Bleed Red" and "Sun Salute." And the fact that Under the Weather provides a cover of Nirvana's "Verse Chorus Verse" signals a heavier, more biting direction. Nonetheless, Chambers' power pop instincts and strong sense of melody remain. For Chambers, this EP is obviously about evolution -- not a desire to forget about what the Sloppy Meat Eaters represented and distance himself from their memory. Under the Weather is unlikely to alienate the Meat Eaters fans; if anything, Chambers just might pick up some new ones.

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