Reviews of Lizards & Stars
"Madison's Your Mom SRO (or "Standard Rock Outfit") was forced
to add the SRO to its name when another act complained. That's just
as well, since their sophomore album showcases a band that's worked
very hard to reinvent itself.
While its earlier incarnation at times fell into shambling flower-
child cliches, Your Mom SRO are now much more at ease in the recording
studio and far more certain of singer-keyboardist Stephanie Rearick's
central place in the mix. A crisp, playful singer, Rearick treats most
cuts as madcap show tunes and leaves the rocking-out to the band's dual
percussionists and Dead-inspired guitarist, Jon Hain. Whether offering
up a sly mind-game in the convoluted putdown track "Fiberglass Panties"
or tripping lightly through the contorted round "Happy-go-lucky," Rearick
radiates a genuine exuberance that makes even the most obscure lyrics
oddly touching. This is especially true of the title cut, a bit of por-
tentous prog that benefits enormously from her loopy blues wailing.
Some of the more experimental songs on this extremely varied disc are
apt to raise a few eyebrows among the dance-rockers and Deadhead noodlers
Your Mom SRO seem to be courting, but that's their problem. The fact is,
Lizards & Stars has an oddball brilliance about it precisely because
the players always caper in the direction of the looking-glass...and
occasionally step through it.
-- Tom Laskin, Isthmus 12/31/97
"The hyper-kinetic kismet of Stephanie Rearick's piano and
voice skitters The Your Mom SRO's new disc out from under the rocks
and into the open skies. Anything but your standard rock outfit,
Rearick and company created a cabaret of songs whose dizzying
spirals lift you up and invite you into a world of fiberglass
panties and erotomania. The aforementioned piano and voice bounce
and arc with lighthearted cadence as the four-fisted force of
percussionists Jeff Scott and John Driscoll propel the listener
into a pleasant hysteria, racing along a constant stream of poetry
and nimble eruptions from guitarist Jon Hain. Recorded over Labor
Day weekend at Optisonic Studios, the direct-to-the-boards production
gives a warm, natural feel that allows the friendly camaraderie of
like-minded eccentrics to shine through. It is this earnest sincerity
that wins over the listener with the revolving door revelations of
"Circular Reasoning," the schoolyard/barroom chant of "Culty's,"
and the runaway insistence of the chattering "Happy-Go-Lucky."
For all its sprightly manner, Lizards & Stars rumbles and twinkles,
with an undercurrent of dark mania peaking out occasionally from
brightly lit choruses. In plotting a course that avoids generic
definition, The Your Mom SRO may have found themselves at odds with
conventional beliefs, but everyone ultimately benefits from the
-- John Noyd, Maximum Ink 11/13/97
"YOUR MOM: NEW NAME, NEW CD
Because it conflicted with the moniker of some band in
California, Madison's Your Mom recently had to change its name.
Members came up with The Your Mom SRO, with SRO standing for
"Standard Rock Outfit," but as anyone who has heard the group's
music knows, that's not exactly truth in advertising.
For a Standard Rock Outfit, Your Mom plays around with genre
fusion an awful lot on its new "Lizards & Stars," toning down
some of the oddball psychedelics of its debut disc in favor of
more torchy jazz and swooning pop.
It's a decidedly unpredictable sound, held together by fine
instrumentation. There's great piano work on songs like "Wading"
and "Out of Breath," and "14" is anchored by a striking trumpet
solo as well as the the versatile vocals of multi-instrumentalist
Stephanie Rearick [In reality, Jon sings "14" --Ed.]
That sound can be smooth and stylish one minute, cloying and
goofy the next (see the shrill "Culty's" for proof), but most of
"Lizards & Stars" is restlessly inventive in the best way.
The Your Mom SRO will celebrate the release of "Lizards & Stars"
Saturday night at the Eagles Club, along with fellow locals Yid
Vicious, Verb!, Farmer, the Elizabeth Schaefer Band and Pascal.
The all-ages show starts at 6 p.m. Tickets are $7 in advance,
and $8 at the door."
-- Stephen Thompson, Rhythm (WI State Journal/Capital Times) 10/23/97
"Madison based Your Mom SRO will be hosts of a blow-out
celebration at The Tasting Room, 1100 E. Kane (corner of Kane &
Humbolt) on Friday, April 17th to kick off the Milwaukee release
of their new CD, "Lizards & Stars."
The band, led by singer, keyboardist, and trumpeter Stephanie
Rearick, has a sound uniquely their own. Blending styles ranging
from rock, jazz, funk, and classical they create a swirling,
pulsating groove that pulls listeners into a world entirely of the
SRO's making. Featuring both a drum set and congas, the complex and
compelling rythms are glued together by the tasteful stylings of
bassist Joey Zarda. Guitarist, Jon Hain adds his own odd ball tones
to complete the mix. Often drifting into circus vamps or off-kilter
caberet, the band never loses sight of the strong rock groove.
The new CD, "Lizards & Stars" is already getting airplay on radio
throughout the Midwest and in places as far-flung as Salt Lake City
and Burlington, VT. In Milwaukee, the disc has been getting played on
WMSE and on the local show on WLUM.
Milwaukee's own Les Lokey will get the party going with her own brand
of hell-fire rock and roll. She will be joined for this special show
by The Whole Damn Band. Les is a WAMI winner and current nominee."
-- Scott Barnett, Milwaukee Nightlife 4/98
"Lizards & Stars" is available at Mother Fools Coffeehouse, B-Side, MadCity Music X,
Strictly Discs, & Barnes & Noble (Madison,WI), Atomic Records (Milwaukee), Wee-Bees (Steven's Point, Wausau),
Inner Sleeve (Wausau) and online at Uvulittle Records.
This site © 1998, 1999 2000, 20001 by Your Mom SRO. (608) 259-1030 for bookings or info. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or comments.
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