Posthumous collection of unreleased recordings, previously vinyl-only tracks, live songs, covers, etc. from this great band lead by Elizabeth Elmore. Distant closes with two new, unreleased acoustic songs - just a girl and her guitar - hinting at things to come.
There was a band named Sarge. They've disbanded and left us with a scrapbook titled Distant...
1998 was a breakthrough year. The band's second CD, The Glass Intact, received rave reviews in SPIN, Salon, The Village Voice, and the band toured coast-to-coast from their base in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. Sarge closed out the latter half of 1998 by being named "Hot Band" in Rolling Stone and one of "98 for '98" in SPIN.
There were a few lineup changes, 100 more live shows across the US, some large label offers, all leading to& Elizabeth Elmore attending law school at Northwestern University. In the fall of 1999 the band continued to do weekend warrior live dates in the Midwest around Elizabeth's class schedule, even extending to NYC in September for the CMJ Music Marathon. And then, for reasons best described as contributing-factors-too-numerous-to-enumerate, Sarge decided to split. And we're all left to wonder what could have been.
Nevertheless, Elizabeth has compiled a document in Distant of what was. Booklet photos chart the lineup changes. The CD leads off with three new, unreleased tunes recorded by Sarge's final line-up, Elizabeth calls them 'demos', we call them smashing and beautiful.
Crackling with energy the album then lifts off with six dangerously electrified live tracks, blistering versions of "Stall", "Fast Girls", "Half As Far", "Dear Josie, Love Robyn", Homewrecker" and "The First Morning". This batch was recorded at Chicago's Cabaret Metro and notorious Champaign-Urbana rock club Mabel's in 1999, during fellow local scene heroes Braid's series of farewell shows. The teenage kicks and twenty-something lusts that made SARGE such a powerful spectacle on stage are documented herein.
Distant also includes their cover of Cyndi Lauper's "Time After Time" from the "Stall" 7-inch single, available for the first time on CD, plus SARGE's wholly unreleased version of Nancy Sinatra's you-go-girl classic "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'", and their cover of Wham!'s seasonal smash "Last Christmas" from the 1998 My Pal God Holiday Compilation appearance.
The album closes with two new, unreleased acoustic numbers, Elizabeth and her guitar, pure pathos. And the scrapbook closes.
From the liner notes, written by Elizabeth:
Well, this is it. Three new songs, six live, three covers, and two more to finish the CD. Most of these songs were never intended for release. The first three were demos. We had no plans of anyone but us hearing the live ones but here they are, albeit a little, um, rough. We played the last Braid shows and since our friend Lance was recording them, he offered to record us too. Had I known they'd eventually be released, I might have tried to sing a little more in tune. Anyway, they're energetic right? Right. The covers are pretty goofy but we figured what the hell. The idea for "These Boots..." came from a bump-and-grind karaoke version I did in Tucson a couple of years ago. The semi-acoustic version of "the end of july" is the final song we ever recorded and probably a pretty fitting ending for the CD. We included as many pictures as possible from over the years. This CD is sort of our own personal scrapbook, the good and the bad. We had a great time doing this band and touring the country. Thanks to all of you we've met over the years. See you around...