AOL's Digital City

October 21, 1999 -- Hummer, called "one of the best bands to come out
of Boston in a long, long time" on

Shred- WBCN

i love the song "worried mind." i play it at the paradise constantly
and have known it to be caught in my head for extended periods of time.
it's like GEORGE HARRISON lives in this band.

Sound Check
My lord what a chorus (and this is just the first song-high hopes for the other two). The song is called "Sweetly." Got a walk-paced tempo and yup-it's melodic rock. Well thought out guitar and bass lines and a nifty echoed harmonica bit.
He's got a low-key vocal delivery (Not low pitched, just relaxed). Second song has the old guitar-through-the-Leslie trick and I'm getting the distinct impression of a heavy Beatles influence, say around the "White Cover" album.
Wonderful job fellers. Could you use a maraca player? (I'm available) L.A. Joe vol. 14 Feb./march

M3, Modern Musician Monthly
"You have to give this Boston- area band credit: they may only have three songs on this tape, but stylistically they do as much as they can in that short space! The lead track, "Sweetly," is by far the least "sweet" of the bunch, although it may be the best; a slowly building tune that has kind of a Cracker vibe to it (thing "Low") with moody verses that explode into driving choruses. What's particularly interesting in this tune is the written harmonized guitar lines in the verses that add a unique texture to an otherwise conventional alternative-guitar tune. Immediately the vibe is brought down to a mellow acoustic level with the lullaby-ish "Worried Mind," a simple waltzing acoustic and brush-laden tune..... Finally, the quirky "Facedown" finishes the mix with a trippy psychedelic tune that is somewhere between Jellyfish, the Beatles, and Squeeze. But does it work? From a writing perspective, yes. The hooks are strong and the song construction is quite good.... I'm intrigued by this offering, and interested where Hummer will go from here, because the writing is quite strong, and with that in their corner, the possibilities are endless.
---Rich Lupescu February 1997

Metronome Magazine
Doug's Top 5 for January.
3-song cassette
sweetly
worried mind
facedown
I can't be sure, but I think Hummer is the brainchild of two musicians, Stephen Mayone and Daniel Cantor. At least that's who's credited for writing these well crafted songs. If so, they're excellent musicians who play these three compositions with incredible vigor and precision.
They create a huge wall of sound filled with rhythm and heightened by enticing lyrics that grab the listener up into celestial bliss.
Michael Penn, The Beatles and XTC all have common ground with Hummer. So, what are you A&R guys waiting for? Sign 'em already, will ya! Douglas Sloan. January, 1997

ORB Confidential, The Musician's Trade Journal.
"This three song demo features Hummer, a duo out of Watertown, Ma. The band's music is based o simple, melodic songs played with a pseudo-psychedelic style and spiced with a thin layer of harsher guitar work. Three songs from this band really isn't enough and I can't wait for a full length release. J. Belanger. February, 1997

Northeast Performer
"It took me until the third and last song of this demo before I realized what these guys were up to and why I liked it so much. They don't sound too much like any particular other group, but they have borrowed some very familiar production and arranging techniques, and used them creatively to enhance their own work. I don't want to give anything away and spoil it for the listener, but the result is amazingly effective. I like their musical instincts overall, and I think they could continue to grow on their own, but I'd like to hear them with some "assistance." A full production studio would be good for starters, and maybe a little technical advice from time to time. Since the band has already begun to attract label attention, it wouldn't surprise me if everything starts coming together soon.
They open up with a semi-grungy rock ballad called "Sweetly," and the lyric builds from the opening line, adding color until they get to the chorus and the drums kick in. They add a touch of hysteria in the instrumental break with a bluesy harmonica going crazy deep in the reverb. "Worried Mind" changes the pace quite a bit. It has a very strong refrain and it's more of an acoustic number in 3/4 time. "Facedown" is upbeat, a little bouncy. The lyrics are playful, with just a hint of facetiousness here and there. Of the three, I like "Worried Mind" the best, but they are all solid tunes. As I said earlier, I like their musical instincts overall.
One word of caution is in order: without the j-card, I wouldn't be able to name you the title of any of the songs except "Worried Mind." I realize that the hook-type titles of Top 40 aren't for everybody, but you might want to reconsider where you've placed the titles in the other songs, or consider making them stronger in some way."
-David Robinson, April 1997

Mixx Magazine
"This is a three song tape, but it is packed with peanuts and really satisfies! Hummer is Dan Cantor and Steve Mayone, together this duo makes a group! Almost all of the noises heard on Facedemo are produced by one of these two multi-talented players. The pair uses their sizable amounts of skill to flesh out a sound that is much larger than the sum of their parts.
Either one or both of these boys has a serious amount of studio smarts, because the project fairly reeks of D.I.Y. I can't imagine anyone besides the duo themselves in the studio creating this masterwork. If they had other help, it is not noted in their sparse but humorous demo package. The short one-sheet and accompanying cover letter gently cradled a modest, clear-shell tape, with a clean and effective label. However, no information was provided about the recording process, and I found myself cursing Hummer for this glaring oversight!
These veterans of more than a dozen regional bands seem to have found a real sound together. You will hear more on Hummer when I review their full-length CD "Premium" which my mailbox is currently salivating for...
In the meantime, get this tape and whet your appetite for Hummer, ... -Christopher Marz, Mixx Magazine, 4/97.

Jim Santo Demo Universe/Web Magazine

Three enjoyable numbers from Stephen Mayone and Daniel Cantor, d/b/a Hummer. Inhabiting the same corner of the pop universe as Matthew Sweet, Hummer sways from alt-rock ("Sweetly") to country-rock ballad ("Worried Mind") to George Harrison-influenced whimsy ("Facedown"). Dunno who does what here, but it's all done exceptionally well.

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