After spending four years of the '90s co-leading the Portland, OR, rock trio Spectator Pump, vocalist and guitarist Stephanie Smith decided it was time to strike out on her own and thus formed Kleveland in 2000. A hard rocking yet pop-oriented garage band for the dirty bars of Portland, Kleveland channeled the passion of acts like X and early Pretenders, and released an EP in 2002 entitled Everybody Wants To. The group next issued an eponymous album in 2006 via local label Pampelmoose, on which Smith joined forces with drummer Danny Carbo (of area rock band Thrillbilly) and bassist Matty K. The record was melodic and fierce, as much Blondie and Cheap Trick as it was Joan Jett and Iggy Pop. By 2008, Kleveland were comprised of Smith rocking out alongside Carbo, bassist Allen Hunter (of the Eels), and second guitarist/vocalist Morgan Grace.
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