Lift EP and Album Reviews
© 2000 Russell W Elliot
all Images © 1998-1999 Molly Bancroft / Daemon Records
used with permission Last Updated: 27 February 2000
Lift is a female rock trio from Atlanta that play melodic modern rock featuring soaring female vocals. Fronted by Molly Bancroft (vocals, guitar), the band also includes Simone Simonton (drums) and Julie Clark (bass). Keyboards are proudly omitted from the band's sound.
With varied backgrounds and a genuine passion for music, the group formed in 1994. Their debut album, Stellar (Lyric Moon (USA), 1996), consists of twelve tracks and remains generally available today. The 10-track Lifelike (Daemon Records (USA) DAM 19014, 1997), is also critically acclaimed. Lift's commitment to themselves, the music, and their audience is born out of a desire to empower people to think, find meaning and take responsibility as indivuduals.
Lift were the winner of the 1997 Diskmakers SE Independent Music World Series. They wrote and recorded several Coca-Cola radio advertisetments and were featured on Atlanta's WNNX) Locals Only compilation CD. With a song included on the soundtrack of the feature film Save Yourself they were also a major contributor to the soundtrack of the 1996 CLIO Awards Interactive CD-ROM.
September EP. The band's EP is probably the best introduction to Lift. Lush production with lots of texture accompanies Molly's powerful yet sensitive vocal lead. The overall sound is highly accessible, pop-oriented rock, and is similar to Mono (Formica Blues). The EP is comprised of five midtempo tracks. In "Even If (It Is Love)" Molly's lead clearly demonstrates her broad vocal range and significant energy level. Backing vocals in the chorus add effective texture to the lead and the instrumentals. Soaring solo vocals are extremely prominent on "Turn Away" with backing vocals providing additional colour in the chorus. Lush guitar carries the melody and although the sound is generally loud the vocals are mixed up and sung with perfect clarity.
Vocals carry the sensitive ballad "Need To Know" with harmonies and various vocal effects contributing to a great sound. The instrumental bridge is especially notable demonstrating the virtuousity of the artists' talent. "Let It Out" is a mid-tempo rock song with sensitive ballad-like verses offset by a multi-tracked dynamic guitar-packed chorus. Acoustic elements in the instrumental bridge are an effective contrast. Molly's most sensitive and soaring lead vocal is right on top in the bluesy "Mesmerize" which concludes the EP.
Lifelike. The band were joined by David Patterson (lead guitar, fake strings, vocals) on their second album, released on Daemon Records in 1997. Again fronted by Molly Bancroft's stunning talent, the album's ten tracks are vocally intense, backed with lush and soaring guitar througout. Production quality of the percussion is especially notable througout. Harmonious backing vocals also work quite well.
Styles vary across the album from rocking uptempo numbers ("Better To Be Brave," "Wait") to torch songs ("Let Us Be," "Sorry Doesn't Say, "Say When") and bluesy ballads ("In Summertime," "Radio-Head" ) "Lifelike" and "I Mean It" are ballad-rock crossovers that combine the artists' various talents effectively to deliver a lovely sound. "Won't Be Lonely" is carried by Molly's dynamic vocal lead yet instrumentals actually approach orchestral textures with lush electric guitar and Patterson's "fake strings."
You can order Lift's album Lifelike and hear soundbites from it at amazon.com here and order their debut album Stellar here. Although Lift's sound is quite different in style from that of the majority of the artists currently reviewed at Musical Discoveries, Molly Bancroft's vocals have got to be heard. Lift's recordings should be explored to listen to Molly sing if for no other reason. The recordings are a nice listen. Give them a try today.
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