Need help remembering this obscure '80s college rock group
May 3, 2011 6:19 PM   Subscribe

Please help me stop thinking about the Goo Goo Dolls and tell me what '80s band I can't remember.

My local Mom Rock station has put the Goo Goo Dolls' Name back into surprisingly heavy rotation, and it reminds me of a band I listened to incessantly during the summer of 1986 or 1987 whose name I can't remember but would like to rediscover. Please help me figure this out!

Not the Replacements. A more obscure band, probably from the South, with a six-degrees-or-less relationship to R.E.M., Athens or Chapel Hill. I think I had this band's album on one side of a cassette tape with The Feelies' "The Good Earth" on the other side.

Not Let's Active. Not the dBs. More melodic than Love Tractor. Not the Connells.

The parts of the GGD song that remind me of Whatever The Hell Band This Is is the guitar on the tempo change and John Rzeznik's voice in general, but especially on the line about the tired song on the tired radio (which I realize sounds pretty Westerbergian).

Hope I'm not wasting a question here, but I have to figure this out and move on with my life. Thanks!
posted by Sweetie Darling to Media & Arts (23 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
The Judybats?
posted by kimdog at 6:26 PM on May 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

The Vulgar Boatmen?
posted by jabes at 6:36 PM on May 3, 2011

Beautiful South?
posted by DWRoelands at 6:36 PM on May 3, 2011

Several bands spring to mind: Dreams So Real, Guadalcanal Diary, the Reivers. I'll have more in a few minutes.
posted by otters walk among us at 6:38 PM on May 3, 2011

Gin Blossoms? Matthew Sweet?
posted by padraigin at 6:40 PM on May 3, 2011

Maybe something on this list of jangle pop bands will ring a bell for someone?
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:41 PM on May 3, 2011

A little late for your timeframe, but possibly Uncle Tupelo, The Jayhawks, or Buffalo Tom? The Jayhawks' "Waiting for the Sun" and Buffalo Tom's "Velvet Roof" came to mind right away (after I realized you had already said it wasn't The Connells).
posted by dayintoday at 6:41 PM on May 3, 2011

Drivin' and Cryin'?
posted by josher71 at 6:41 PM on May 3, 2011

OK, my initial guesses were stupid looking at the timeframe issue again.

What about Camper Van Beethoven? They're from California, but I can see a little South in David Lowery's voice.

Sorry, I'm having way too much fun trying to figure this out. As is otterswalkamongus.
posted by dayintoday at 6:57 PM on May 3, 2011

hmm, a lot of bands I would have guessed are already covered (Connells, Guadalcanal Diary, Dreams So Real)... could it be someone else from the Athens: Inside/Out film?

A couple of long shots: Soul Asylum in their pre-Runaway Train days? Lemonheads in their pre-Shame About Ray days?
posted by scody at 7:14 PM on May 3, 2011

If it IS the Reivers, they were originally called Zeitgeist until there was a lawsuit (or something). ...if that helps?
posted by Judith Butlerian Jihad at 7:14 PM on May 3, 2011

Wow, that jangle pop Wikipedia page is like stepping into a beer-soaked time machine.

Strongest possibility is that it's Dreams So Real, maybe Father's House? I had a slightly unhealthy THING for Peter Buck at the time and would have bought anything he was involved with). Other possibilities are Camper Van Beethoven and Dumptruck (maybe Positively Dumptruck, although I don't remember the song in the YouTube video).

Why did I give my albums away?!

But while we're reminiscing and while I try to track down something online so I can hear Dreams So Real, keep them coming.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 7:18 PM on May 3, 2011

Do you possibly remember a song by the mystery band? Even just a snip of a lyric?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:19 PM on May 3, 2011

More: Fatal Flowers, Winter Hours, the Rave-Ups, Hunters & Collectors, Verlaines, Big Dipper, and for something really obscure, Cleaners from Venus.
posted by otters walk among us at 7:21 PM on May 3, 2011

another guess: The Feelies? (Not from the South, but they had various REM connections.)
posted by scody at 7:21 PM on May 3, 2011

Dreams So Real was the first thing that came to my mind, and they were from Athens, so I think chances are good it's them. The Dumptruck song in the video was the "hit" and the first song on the album, so if you don't remember that, it probably isn't it.
posted by otters walk among us at 7:26 PM on May 3, 2011

It's available used on Amazon for $10. I have spent $10 on far stupider things, so I think I'll grab it and see if it's the match. Also need to find someone with a record player.

EmpressCallipygos, I can't remember a darned thing - not a song, not a lyric. It's a visceral reaction, where I hear this GGD song and suddenly I am 19 and back in my mom's car, driving around Raleigh listening to college rock, waiting for summer to be over and hoping there's a letter from a boy from school waiting for me at home.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 7:35 PM on May 3, 2011 [2 favorites]

Mostly successful in the 90's, but maybe Better than Ezra?
posted by miss_kitty_fantastico at 9:01 PM on May 3, 2011

They were Australian, but I mentally filed Hoodoo Gurus in the same category as a lot of mid-'80s Southern jangly college rock.
posted by lisa g at 9:26 PM on May 3, 2011

Fetchin' Bones?
posted by littleredwagon at 7:03 AM on May 4, 2011

Georgia Satellites?
posted by wenestvedt at 11:31 AM on May 4, 2011

Hothouse Flowers?
posted by duckus at 9:10 PM on May 16, 2011

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