Candy Bars, a “heavy baroque pop” trio from Tampa, Florida, is scheduled to release its debut album, the enigmatically titled 'On Cutting Ti-Gers in Half and
Understanding Narravation', on the Tampa label New Granada Records (Isobella, Pohgoh). As unclassifiable as its title, the album brings to mind an amalgam of
Sparklehorse, Mark Mothersbaugh, Jeremy Enigk, Tindersticks, and Leonard Cohen, and is at once rueful and uniquely lovely.
What began in 2003 as two music store employees’ response to the metal-laden alternate dimension known as Tampa, FL developed into a trio that
explores the more symphonic end of the pop spectrum—a sound that the members have dubbed “incidental heroin pop.” While it should be noted that the
members are not themselves heroin users, upon listening to 'On Cutting
Ti-Gers in Half and Understanding Narravation', one can easily understand how such a description becomes apropos.
During the Summer of 2005, Candy Bars members Daniel Martinez, Ryan Hastings, and Melissa Castellano re-visited and re-recorded the best
songs from previous demos, resulting in their debut full length, “On Cutting Ti-Gers in Half and Understanding Narravation” (available from Tampa’s own New Granada Records). All of the songs on the album, musically anD lyrically, engender in the listener a sense of delightful confusion and profound desperation. Where Candy Bars deviates from the slew of unremarkable “dark, orchestral pop” acts that have emerged in recent years is in its ability to capture such weighty sentiments in true pop
format, complete with singable (though sufficiently complex) verses and tasty hooks.
Candy Bars is inarguably one of the most inventive, unique bands to ever emerge from The Sunshine State--the region of the country best known
for the uninspired, rectangular meanderings of bands such as Creed and Limp Bizkit and Sister Hazel. But the anomalous emergence of such creativity
from an otherwise vapid location becomes relatively unimportant in the face of the most interesting aspect of the band—quite simply, Candy Bars write and
record incredibly good songs.
"Candy Bars persevere in creating a true work of art"
- Under the Radar
"Candy Bars bring weird little abstract worlds to life with seemingly nonsensical lyrics that occasionally flash with cogency, it's like listening to a crazy man who might once have been a genius... There are Beach Boys breezes on the echo-wonderful 'Violets' and 'The Birthday Song' sounds like Mercury Rev...It's all tethered to Martinez's elusive voice, which gets more and more believable as it moves toward peculiar places."