Often music is nothing more than a reflection of environment. Cities have an influence on music that is created within their limits.
It makes sense that Punk originated in New York's derelict, run down Bowery and London's mean back alleys. Sunny Los Angeles produced some of the warmest Rock and pop. When the sun went down, L.A. wallowed in the dark side of the Hollywood/American Dream. Psychedelic music seeped from San Francisco's fog and mist. Amid Seattle's perpetual gray, dismal drizzle, Grunge roared out of garages.
Poet Walt Whitman once wrote "Oregon doesn't exist, it's a state of mind." Portland, Oregon's largest city, is a couple hundred miles south of Seattle. It gets far less rain (but then that's true of just about anywhere). It is an unconventional place, where free thinkers abound and individualism thrives. A river runs through it with one too many bridges crossing. It's from the Rose City (a nice place to jog), the Joggers emerged.
It happens all the time. Musicians going nowhere decide to jettison the baggage (present bandmates) and join forces. Trying to survive the Portland music scene The Joggers came together in '01 with the idea of pursuing a quirky acoustic/electric Rock sound. As evidence, they released "The Devil Wears Earplugs" on the "Startime Supercuts" compilation in '03. Later in the year, they issued their highly acclaimed debut "Solid Guild."
Almost as soon as the Joggers got going the wheels nearly came off. Burned out on group pressures and touring, Whitesides took an extended break. Fortunately, the songs kept coming. With the addition of vocalist Dan Wilson, the Joggers issued, in '05, "With A Cape And A Cane."
2003 Solid Guild
2005 With a Cape and a Cane
The Joggers play a loose, agreeable, jangle Rock with textured laid back, almost aloof, vocals. The slashing, razor thin guitar on "Back To The Future" provides the most excitement along with "Every Other Word." "Little Kings" with its jerky rhythm and the "so loose it's about to unravel" "Natural Novice" are captivating. The acoustic opener "Loosen Up" is OK but the Joggers do better when they ride some energy.
"With A Cape And A Cane" the Joggers deliver sharp, angular Rock. The set opens with the tense ("turn the screws") "Ziggurat Traffic" which also possesses an irresistible bass line. "Wicked Light Sleeper," the riff driven "Horny Ghost" and "Since You're Already Up" are tightly wound songs that unravel more by design than accident. How Oregonian.