Verbena – Souls For Sale/Into The Pink, AA Bondy- When The Devil Is Loose

Posted: July 24, 2010 in Uncategorized

Verbena is one of those bands you listen to in sheer wonder. Wonder as to how a band that blistered with the raw intensity can be so damn catchy at the same time. And even more profound wonder as to how they never blew up like they should have.
Formed by Scott Bondy aka A.A. Bondy in early 90’s Alabama under the moniker Shallow, the band put out a handful of singles before recruiting new members and a new name. Verbena recorded an EP for Superchunk’s Merge label in 1996, followed by their debut full length album, Souls For Sale, in 1997. The album hits you like a freight train going two hundred miles per hour and is over before you know it. Loud and grungy guitars along with the male/female snotty vocal trade off’s of Bondy and bassist Anne Marie
Griffin meet a sense of undeniable melody producing one of the best albums of the late 90’s. The album was so well received the Dave Grohl offered to produce their follow up album, Into The Pink (1999). Their major label debut, Into The Pink picked up right where Souls left off , only benefiting from Grohl’s thick production.

Griffin left the band shortly after the release of Into The Pink. Bondy continued with a new bassist and drummer, but the new line up lacked the male/female dynamic that was part of the band’s distinguishing sound. The absence of Griffin was noticed in what would become Verbena’s final album, La Musica Negra, in 2003. This, along with a more  radio friendly direction, truly set the album apart from the previous two. Regradless, the album is chock full of straight ahead rockers, leading off with their radio hit Way Out West. Following one last tour under the name The Alabama Boys Choir, Bondy disbanded Verbena to focus on his solo career.

Bondy’s first solo album signaled a completely new direction in the artist’s songwriting. 2007’s American Hearts showcases an alt country sound produced from just Bondy and his guitar. The album is an obviously drastic transition for him and though the songs are an easy listen, it shows. In 2009, though, AA Bondy hits his stride and perfects his craft with When The Devil’s Loose. Released on Fat Possum, the album is a huge leap from his solo debut and establishes the artist as a mainstay of the genre.

Anyways, check out the video for Into The Pink’s single Baby Got Shot, followed by some documentation of Scott “A.A.” Bondy’s musical history.

Souls For Sale (1997)

Into The Pink (1999)

A A Bondy – When The Devil Is Loose (2009)

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