Pretend You Need Me
The Gimmick It's not often that "boosting morale" is part of a band's mission statement. For that matter, it's not often that a band has a mission statement-or at least not one it fesses up to. But Soft Gong's not your average band. First conceived as a house band for Wirestone, a marketing solutions company, the Gong quickly eclipsed the gimmick of "company band" to become the "Cadillac of cover bands," and has now-with it's debut album, Pretend You Need Me--evolved into a songwriting force to be reckoned with. The Goods Irreverent? Tongue-in-cheek? Post ironic? Call the lyrics what you will, but the Soft Gong sound is a heart-felt salute to the power-pop groups these boys grew up with-Big Star, Badfinger, Cheap Trick, Marshall Crenshaw-with a 21st-century twist. Whether it's the hyper-groovability of "What Now, Julia," the frat-boy sentiment informing "Night-School Sweetheart," or the breezy reggae thump of "Coat of Paint"-one of the disc's tracks is bound to sink it's hooks in you. Much of Pretend You Need Me was recorded with Soft Gong playing together live in the studio. The band's loose, the sound's tight, and you, dear listener, are in for a mystic power-pop 12-track meal served straight from the company store (watch your soul, now).