Sunday, December 4, 2011

"April 25, 2010" (poem by Lee boyle)

*This poem was published in the poetry journal, PKA's Advocate, in 2011.

April 25, 2010

have I seen a day more beautiful. The wind
slugs the American flags
at the car dealerships; the hills and trees
glow dark green.

I cannot press myself
to put the windows up as I drive.

The rain is fresh.
The sky rolls out
just for me
in Columbiana, Ohio.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Help Third Class Make A New Record

We, Third Class, are an indie rock band from Youngstown, Ohio. We are self-made in all that we do and we need your support. Independently, we produce our own music videos, our own tours, and our own albums. In 2006 and 2009, we released professional albums recorded and mastered in great studios, complete with detailed artwork. It took the band two years to make the money back from the first release (touring extensively and giving away merchandise here and there is drain, not to mention broken instruments, filling the gas tank, and changing tires) and we are still in the hole from the 2009 effort. Now, we have six new songs written and the feedback at our shows is better than ever. There is an actual demand for these songs to be recorded. With your help, we can make it happen! The goal is to make the album available for free to all. If you are a Third Class fan, please donate and help the cause. Thank you!

(Note: If you donate $20 or more, your name will appear in a “thank you” section inside of each copy of the album.)

Go to to donate!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Third Class Official Website.

Our lyrics, press and music videos, as well as discography, are all available at Check it out!

"Sweet Amorous Music" (music review by Lee Boyle)

Sweet Amorous Music

The Sweet AM is a southern-rock style band with an album which has recently turned up in Indie Wax Records in Youngstown, Ohio. The album is entitled West. The band has a very themed sound and well-executed harmonies present in most of their works. Also frequent in most songs are love lyrics which, in listening formally to the album, seem to address the same love interest in each track. We’ve all heard albums which seem to be dedicated to one relationship, one passion or one idea. With this mindset, West speaks to a certain mood. It is the kind of album which plays while a listener sits on a porch during sunset. It is played in the car while driving over rolling hills. It is played in the background while two people rekindle in a coffee shop, in a banquet hall when one sits in the corner with no partner for a dance. The album is romantic and sad.
Sporting the ethics of modern country music from the last couple decades, The Sweet AM comes off a bit quirky because of an abundant application of background vocals and rhythmically-oriented placement of lyrics. The traditional implementation of highlights expresses an unexpected edge. Many of the pretty guitar licks and background melodies do not smooth over the tracks like might have been intended. Instead, there is a sound in the singer’s voice which reminds of Dog’s Eye View, Barenaked Ladies or Crash Test Dummies. The album doesn’t necessarily pigeonhole this band into a dated, 1990s sound as much as it takes a sincere, open-ended recording style from the era and does something modern with it. This modernization of this sound is most present in the track, “Moon And Chicken.” The darkly love-ridden croons of Soul Asylum or Hootie And The Blowfish are saddled down and applied to a more dance-friendly sound. A trace of roughness is preserved, but is not overdone; no dramatic tangents or contrived moments of soulfulness.

Musicianship sharp, lyrics straightforward, atmosphere well-themed, The Sweet AM teaches the listener the value of the twanged, sad love song. West is instantly canonized in the collection of southern rock which beckons the heart. Check it out if you are a craving a mindset which is temporarily lost in today’s music. The album is available on iTunes and at Indie Wax.

-Lee Boyle

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Check out this sweet sketch that Pepe of Third Class made!

New, Revised Band Bio

Third Class began as a product of three feral “children” who were adopted by kind parents and given instruments but no musical instruction. Over one hundred and twelve years of what might be called practice – but which also could be called the reinvention of music – the three wild children, locked in a padded room, broke guitar strings and keyboards and drumheads, rebuilding and innovating the tools of their craft until the instruments they used had no hope of being readily recognizable to modern musicians but rather seemed like weapons and torture devices from the future. At first, the music they made with their sci-fi nuitars and kianos was partially recognizable as noise, though would never be categorized as music, at least not by humans. However, over a period of thirty-seven decades, the children, who had since grown into young “men” and had left their padded room, developed a musical styling which was not wholly unbearable to others. In fact, with time and repeated exposure, some even began to enjoy the music which those who later became known as Third Class produced.

But, seriously, the band formed in 1999 in East Palestine, Ohio where brothers, Lee and Jack Boyle, with friend, Pepe Parish, played their first show in a living room. In the years to come, they performed at Cedars Lounge and other venues in Youngstown, Ohio’s general area, as well as many basement, living room and barn shows, and self-recorded four demo albums (now out of print) at the Boyle Residence. They were featured on the local NBC News while playing their first “battle of the bands” competition and received airplay on a program called Backyard Bands on Youngstown’s 98.9 FM. They also received a small review in The Morning Journal in East Palestine for their performance at a high school talent show. In 2004, the band played the first Nouveau Rock Festival, an indie-music showcase hosted by locals, The Zou, in Youngstown. In 2005, Third Class embarked on a modest tour to pass out demos and perform in New York City and in Long Island, New York. They received interviews published in Youngstown’s The Jambar which revered the band for a “fierce independent streak.” Then, in 2006, the band played shows in Akron, Wooster, Bowling Green and Kent, Ohio, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Louisville, Kentucky. A couple months after an interview on Kent State University’s Black Squirrel Radio online, Third Class recorded their first studio album, Chloe’s Epitaph Is Chloe, at Ampreon Recorder with renowned Youngstown engineer and musician, Pete Drivere. Youngstown’s The Walruss called the album “an attempt to classify [an] idiosyncratic sound” and Youngstown’s The Vindicator deemed Third Class “a band to be reckoned with in Northeast Ohio.” To promote the album, the band played numerous Ohio shows, such as in Cleveland, Youngstown and Alliance, Ohio as well as in Philadelphia, Sharon and Cambridge Springs, Pennsylvania, Cleveland, Tennessee and Louisville, Kentucky. The band received airplay from 93.3’s The Homegrown Show in Youngstown and Ruckus Radio online, as well as write-ups in The Salem News in Salem, Ohio and Youngstown’s In 2009, Third Class released their second studio album, The Red Wheelbarrow, recorded at Ampreon, which The Voice of Wooster, Ohio called “an intellectual pursuit.” Write-ups followed from Youngstown’s, The Vindicator,,, The Salem News and Third Class received airplay from unsigned-artist radio stations online, Westsidewill Radio and JFL: The Mixx, and an online pod cast interview by Saw Kick Media of Cleveland, Ohio. During the same period of time, Jack’s poetry was published in The Salt River Review online and he was accepted into graduate school with a teaching assistantship. Lee’s poetry was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and published in Off The Coast in Robbinston, Maine, Abbey in Columbia, Maryland, Leveler online and Advocate in Prattsville, New York. Third Class proceeded to play shows in their regular routes and included shows in Geneva-On-The-Lake, Columbus and Athens, Ohio and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. By 2010, Third Class’ albums were available in a variety of places including online stores such as iTunes, Napster, and CDBaby. Local stores, Indie Wax in Youngstown, Dave’s Music Mine in Pittsburgh, Square Records in Akron, Turn-Up Records and Spin-More Records in Kent, Ohio, started carrying the albums. Dyno Records in Newburyport, Massachusetts and Madgirl World in Portland, Maine gave away free copies of the albums and the band had played their seventh consecutive Nouveau Rock Festival in Youngstown. In 2010, Third Class began premiering newer songs at local venues such as The Lemon Grove and Cedars Lounge in Youngstown, as well as The Black Cherry in Toledo, Ohio and Boney’s Nite Club in Eastpointe, Michigan. They also received airplay on online radio station Rukus Radio and had their music featured in a play, entitled Love Song, performed in Youngstown State University’s theatre.

Third Class’ style is best-described as indie pop or alternative rock. The trio wields a 5-piece drum set with a boxy sound, a four-string bass guitar tuned to the notes F, A, C and high F, a cheap keyboard and a 2-string guitar tuned to a mid-range C and G. The band rotates instruments, oftentimes with Lee on the keyboard, or guitar, and lead vocals and with Jack and Pepe taking turns on drums, bass and back-up vocals. The lyrics are often written in a stream-of-consciousness style with crooning vocals which go frequently out of Lee’s comfortable range. The keyboard licks are reminiscent of piano in up-tempo musicals. The drums are an undulation of tempo and complex patterns. The bass is slippery and usually distorted. The guitar plays mostly a twang of power chords.

New Music Video by Third Class

Lee Boyle of Third Class is featured in their new music video for the song, "Laugh And Cry." The song is from their 2009 album, The Red Wheelbarrow and is available online on iTunes and Details on Enjoy: