Paw – Dragline (1993), Death To Traitors (1995) , Palomar – World Without Horses (1998)

Posted: November 16, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

As referenced in yesterday’s Kill Creek post, another band that helped establish Lawrence, KS as a significant music town was Paw. Forming in 1990 and releasing their first single in 1992, the band’s sound bared more resemblance to the Seattle’s then exploding Grunge scene than they did to their Lawrence town mates. It was because of this that they quickly the object of a major label bidding war  involving the labels who were sure that Paw would be to them as Nirvana was to Geffen. 

Eventually A+M signed Paw to a three album contract, the first of which being their 1993 debut, Dragline. Although Dragline produced five singles, Lolita, Jessie, Couldn’t Know, The Bridge, and Sleeping Bag, the extent of their exposure was limited to alternative radio and music video shows such as Headbangers Ball. Dragline was perceived as an underground success instead of the Nevermind smash that A+M had anticipated. Thus , as with countless other talented young bands of the mid 90’s, they were all but made a bottom priority for their label. 

1995’s Death To Traitors saw the band moving into a less abrasive direction. Though shades of that Nirvana comparison were still evident, the album ventured off into an alt country/Americana direction. Though significantly more dynamic and mature than their debut, the album failed to make any significant impact in the mainstream. Critical reviews were extremely positive, but the album sales were poor enough for A+M to drop Paw from the label and essentially sealing their fates.

Three years later in 1998, Paw’s drummer and guitarist, brothers Peter and Grant Fitch released an album under the name Palomar. The album was entitled A World Without Horses and it focused on the more subdued elements of Paw. The distorted guitars are replaced with jangly ones and the songs are more likely to be found on old episodes of Dawson’s Creek than they would be on Headbanger’s Ball.  Perhaps Paw all grown up? Either way, it ended up being Palomar’s only album.

Paw vocalist Mark Hennessy and bassist Dan Hines regrouped with the Fitch brothers briefly in 2000 to release a mini album entitled Home Is A Strange Place. The album shared some similarities to the Palomar album as well as showcasing a stripped down bluesy influence. The album is the final studio album Paw recorded. After an 8 year hiatus, the band reunited to play at the 2008 Wakarusa Fest in their home state of Kansas. This was followed by a handful of headlining shows around the Lawrence area at the end of 08.

Check out the video for Jessie (1993)

                       Dragline – (1993)

                Death To Traitors – (1995)

Palomar – World Without Horses (1998)

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