The rhythm section does a stellar job on this song. Like Liz Fraser and Dolores O'Riordan, Wheeler's vocals transfer effortlessly from a fragile whisper to a passionate shriek, taking often simple melodies and leading them on a merry dance across her whole impressive range.
My Finest Hour illustrated the small victories of life that most of us can identify with, in this case finding a pound in the underground, and fearing that it may be the high point of life.
The two best known tracks on Reading, Writing And Arithmetic are the singles Can't Be Sure and Here's Where The Story Ends, and two decades later these remain the best examples of The Sundays' appeal with their instant, breezy hooks and delicate, shuffling rhythms. Only Harriet and David could turn this song about rationalizing our neurotic tics into a thing of such beauty that it is timeless.
Few at the time realized that the band was spinning pure gold that would be an encapsulation of nostalgia for that fleeting time in between college graduation and becoming a responsible adult.
The album sold over a million copies and received a positive critical reception.The style of playing found in obscure alternative rock bands immediately drew me toward the instrument, and not surprisingly my tastes have inclined toward bands where the primary focus is on the instrumentation, rather than the singing. Share this article: If you enjoy The Quietus, please consider supporting what we do with a one-off or regular donation. Again the acoustic guitar treatment of this song is noteworthy. The rhythm section does a stellar job on this song. Moreover, this sets down a blueprint that would be followed with spectacularly diminishing returns by the Cranberries, which we're sure they'd rather not dwell on. Its distance from the cynicism and detachment of modern independent music make Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic an album that's immediately charming in its honesty and appreciation of simple beauty. The two together were a potent combination, also not to be shortchanged the rhythm section of Brindley and Hannan provided the solid backbone for the songs.
There are many reasons for their success but it all boils down to the stellar talents at the helm of the band, David Gavurin and Harriet Wheeler. For those of us who can harken back to those battles, there is an appreciation of the description of those situations.The Sundays are a conspicuous exception to that rule. The song examined the smallness of our lives and the fear that we have nothing to back up our belief in our own greatness. This, you'll recall, was when the still-going journeyman phase of Johnny Marr's career really began in earnest, when the notion of things as post-Housemartins referred to their dissolution rather than their figurehead status, and when the indie charts were overrun by - wah! Though The Sundays were sometimes dismissed for being derivative of artists like The Smiths or The Cocteau Twins, the aspiring indie band girl vocalist would end up sounding much fresher by taking some influence from Wheeler's style rather than the likes of Kim Deal or Kim Gordon. And in the meantime, we have three wonderful albums that still sound as fresh — or, you know, not — as they did when they were released. Curiously, Mike Kinsella, in speaking about American Football, cited the band as an influence, in spirit if not exactly in style. In a very short period of time, The Sundays went from unknown on the dive bar circuit to a band on the fast track to fame. The eternal debate society of the college dorm is on full display. There are many reasons for their success but it all boils down to the stellar talents at the helm of the band, David Gavurin and Harriet Wheeler. But the most distinctive ingredient about the Sundays was always Harriet Wheeler's voice, which positions the group as a kind of missing link between the ethereal soundscapes of the Cocteau Twins and the more chart-friendly indie-pop of The Cranberries.
What's also especially striking - and, given the title, wholly appropriate - is just how strong a reflection of student-age life this is, which, on reflection, is a rarer gift than might initially be assumed consider, if you will, how much easier it is to rattle off lists of artists whose oeuvres correlate with adolescent experiences or properly grown-up concerns.
Speaking of clever, The Sundays nailed the internecine battle of flat sharing politics in college on the song I Won.