Year Of The Rabbit was assembled and fronted by Ken Andrews of Failure fame. Soon after Ken stopped writing and performing music as ON, Andrews and ON’s drummer Tim Dow (formerly of Shiner) reached out to Dow’s friend Jeff Garber , and Solomon Snyder joined shortly thereafter. ON’s material had been created mostly by Andrews as a solo project, the harder-rocking sound of Year of the Rabbit is much closer to that of his previous band, Failure.
Their first release, the 2003 EP Hunted, was made available online only from outlets such as CD Baby, itunes, and the band themselves. The buzz from sales of the EP was enough to attract the attention of Elektra Records, who released their debut album shortly thereafter. Sadly as thing in the music business were in constant flux, Warner Music Company, was sold to a group of private investors, and many of the labels’ acts, including Year of the Rabbit, were dropped from their rosters. Two months later, Andrews declared on his official website that due to the shakeup at their label, the band had been put on indefinite hiatus.
The album itself though is a gem. This was as close as anyone who was a Failure fan was going to get to that vibe. The entire album is full of melody, hooks, and that signature tone, that so many guitarists have tried to duplicate. Lyrically this album is very deep and personal. There is not one ounce of filler either. Tracks like “Lie Down,” “Last Defense,” “Hunted,” and “Say Goodbye” are beyond stand out tracks. The instrumentation on here is simple and raw but with the right amount of polish to make it all shine through.
Though they released only one album, 10 years later this album still holds up, and sound like it fits in today more than ever. Ken Andrews was always ahead of his time it seems.
By: Brian Lacy