Submitted By: Darrin Snider (darrin at indyintune dot com)
Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I get to work with all types of bands doing this stuff, and like the random shuffle of the new radio station (you know about that, right?), I always get a kick out of the "musical whiplash" you get from the unexpected left turns.  My sadistic nature probably does nothing for setting a consistent mood or tone, but it sure keeps things interesting.  This week's guests are also fitting examples of this.  Jason Milner is best remembered as a founding member of an industrial band called Form30, while Leslie Benson fronted a folky/bluesy/alt-rock band called Burning Veda.  In retrospect, it was only natural that these two crazy kids get together and form an acoustic piano/lounge singer act called Irene and Reed that itself is now evolving into ... what?

As the Sweetest Condition, the former Irene and Reed bill themselves as "Dark-Tinged Americana."  Now, I barely know what Americana is as it relates to folk-rock, bluegrass, cowpunk, and acoustic singer/songwriter.  Certainly, I don't know what "dark-tinged" refers to other than making it sound like something really cool and unique that you have to listen to.  Billy Corgan plays the hits of Steven Faulkner?  Wait, on second thought, that's not too far off.  Any way you slice it, Jason and Leslie are the type of supremely talented songwriters and performers that have sufficiently proven themselves to the point that you now "trust them."  While you may not know at this point what to expect at the end of this musical journey (the forthcoming "third album"), you can be guaranteed these two are going to give you an enjoyable ride.

Links referenced in the show:     

  • The Sweetest Condition can be found here: Web Site | Facebook | Reverb Nation | Twitter and under their former moniker, Irene and Reed, here: Web Site | Facebook | Reverb Nation | Twitter
  • Jason Milner is the former front man for the Industrial/Gothic band Form30.
  • Leslie Benson is formerly of the alt-rock group Burning Veda
  • Their first album, "Closer to Home" (as Irene and Reed) is available here iTunes | Amazon
  • Their second album, "Struggle, Strength, Reclamation" will be out sometime early next year.  You can hear demos of it on their MFT page.
  • As Sweetest Condition, they have done a great cover of  No Light, No Light by Florence + the Machine can be found on their YouTube site.
  • Irene was named after, and took her look from, actress Marlene Detrich.
  • They use Apogee Duet in their home studio.
  • If you have a modified DeLorean or TARDIS, there's still time to catch their show at the White Rabbit Cabaret.
  • Theremin Cello's are friggin' cool.  Possibly even cooler than the Warr Guitar.
  • As we often do when we older folks get together, we reminisce about The Patio and The Chatterbox, then we get all defensive and play Axel F on the keyboard to prove our musical chops. 
  • Our fourth track, Wild Abandon, was remixed by Von Stultz who played with Jason in the band Nimbus

Currently Listening To:
Irene and Reed: Closer to Home
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Previous Show:
Show #116: Vessel
Next Show:
Show #118: Shadyside Allstars Forever

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