Though singer/songwriters Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow later aligned themselves with a variety of rhythm sections, much of their 1988 debut, Failure
, was recorded as a duo. While grunge was being born in the Posies' native Seattle at the same time, Failure
shows no traces of its influence. Instead, it owes considerably more to the more reflective side of fellow Seattleites the Young Fresh Fellows and to San Francisco's Sneetches, both in the jangly, '60s-derived, folk-rock-influenced melodies and in Stringfellow and Auer's often melancholy everyday-life lyrics, as on The Longest Line
and the heartbreaking Ironing Tuesdays
. Although the anthemic Believe in Something Other Than Yourself
is probably the album's best offering, all 12 songs are excellent.
Just before the Posies called it quits (for the first time) in 1998, they returned to the same studio, producer, and label that had spawned Failure to record their (first) farewell album, Success.
Personnel: Ken Stringfellow (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, keyboards, drums, shaker, tambourine, hand claps); Jon Auer (vocals, guitar, keyboards).
Recording information: Norsound, Bellingham, WA (12/1987-02/1988); Studio X, Bellingham, WA (12/1987-02/1988).