Extracts from a Review of the Lullaby ep [for full text click on reviews].
[Lullaby from the Drive, Stan Dup, Always Rushin', Audrey Hepburn]
It seems that of late, relaxed acoustic acts are on the rise... So Stan, releasing the Lullaby... EP, should by rights be massive by now. Sadly, this is not the case; there is probably a reason for that. The reason being that ... Stan experiment, and have somehow found a genre somewhere between 1960s pop and... rap. Stan, made up of two ridiculously talented multi-instrumentalists, Tim Smith and Neil Archer, start with acoustic sketches and screw around with them; a rap break here, a splash of Hammond organ or even a gong there. By daring to think outside the box, Stan may have doomed themselves to a lifetime of obscurity; I don't know about them, but I'm happy with that. If boring music is the price of commercial success, then may they continue to play their slightly wonky folk for years to come.
Rating: 4/5 by Gaz Hughes rockmidgets.com
Neil Archer: who writes most of the lyrics and some of the music.
Tim Smith: who writes most of the music and some of the lyrics.
Like the Beatles, we try to keep our arrangements solo free so we don't have any long guitar or keyboard noodling in our songs. However, we do try to put in a few surprises and changes of direction now and then.
We also try to incorporate some of the best pop styles from the 60's to the present day, so you will find we have collaborated with a number of other top musicians including multi-award winning blues vocalist Maria Daines, and ace Detroit hip hop artists Leaf Erikson and Blake Eerie.
Our greatest influence is probably 60's R&B, so we are trying to reintroduce listeners to the incredible sounds of the Hammond Organ as a feature in many of our tracks.
Lyrically we like to tell stories and create as much visual imagery as we can, it's very gratifying that a number of critics and friends have said that they think our songs "play like movies"...anyway hope you enjoy our music, and thanks for listening.
STAN are a critically-acclaimed duo from Hertfordshire [UK], who have attained something of a cult status. Many musicians from different countries and different genres have asked to collaborate with them and appear on their guest list, and they have developed a particularly strong connection with leading members of the Detroit hip hop community.
They play in a variety of styles creating their own unmistakable genre that one reviewer rather neatly called "slightly wonky folk". Recordings for their third album "LostforWords" have just been completed [the cd is available now].
STAN have appeared on local independent radio and the BBC, as well as a number of internet stations including being play listed on Pulse.
We don't play live at the moment mainly because we generally play several instruments each per track so it could only be done by bringing in other musicians. However we are currently looking expand and take our songs on the road.
To that end we have put up three songs [Son of a son, The Queens Park, and Sunshine in my soul] that have been recorded as close to a live sound as we can get with the current line up.
Add the sound of the classic British bands from the 60's including the Beatles, Kinks, The Who, Spencer Davis, and Small Faces - more recent bands such as Supergrass and Paul Weller, the jazz of Pat Metheny, and Jimmy Smith, with a splash of Northern Soul, and that's where we'd like to be.
Guitars: Martin 00028, Takamine [6 and 12], Susuki Classical, Fender Strat and Tele, Yamaha [5 various a/e], and Line 6 Variax,
Double Bass: 1/2 size acoustic d/b,
Bass: 1971 Fender Mustang,
Resonator: Dobro Duolian,
Ukuleles: Kanile'a [high G tuned] and Ko'olau [low G tuned] Tenors,
Keys: Hammond module, various piano modules, Roland synth with additional orchestral card, Yamaha Motif mm6.
Drums: Premier Snare, Roland Drum Pads with kick and hi-hat pedals,
Odds and Ends: gob iron, hammer and spanner, ham bones, bath water,
Amps: Line 6, Polytone, and Carlsbro...