|The tagline on their website says it all. When cello player for the late 90s Alt-Rock band Treadmill Trackstar Heidi Carey emailed me about her love of po’ boys and whiskey, she informed me of her recently reunited band’s finished effort to produce an album – after a ten year hiatus – funded entirely by donations from fans and supporters, entitled i belong to me. Intrigued by the idea I gave the album a listen, and I’m impressed with it.
I mean, strictly from a technical standpoint it really can’t be easy to put out a well-produced, decent sounding album (as this is) after such a hiatus, while simultaneously tackling the issue of having absolutely no money, but Treadmill Trackstar managed to pull it off.
On that note, Heidi said:
The donation thing was crazy, we just sent out an email to our old (like 10 year old) list. About half came back as dead addresses so we set up a sort of public radio style fund raising effort on our website. We totally didn’t expect it to work and for about 3 months it didn’t! But then, money started showing up in our PayPal account. [...] We like to think that folks wanted a new Treadmill record! I think it was just a proper alignment of the stars or something.
TT’s “non-profit band” formula of making music for music’s sake is entirely – and ironically – new and refreshing in this day and age. This mentality actually feeds into a feeling you develop as you listen to the album; they’ve clearly put a lot of love into it and it actually makes the music feel better. Describing the music is a touch tricky since it enjoys a wide range, but the term that keeps sticking in my mind is “slightly moodier Foo Fighters with a dash of Smashing Pumpkins.” …and a cello. Try track 8, Hands Off (available free to listen on their website) for a very good sense of what they’re all about.
Since the individual members are all currently with family and settled down, you won’t be seeing them any time soon at the 8×10. But for their next project they’re apparently attempting to develop a full blown ROCK OPERA, with all proceeds from their current album and individual “investments” going entirely to the production. It will be interesting to see where it leads. But for now, check out Treadmill Trackstar’s i belong to me at their website or Facebook.