The ’89 Cubs


The ’89 Cubs were a trio from Omaha, Nebraska, comprised of Matt Baum, Dan Brennan, and Ryan Fox. The band’s lone album, There Are Giants in the Earth, was released in November 2004.

Former taste-making website Pitchfork began their review with “This is something of a backhanded compliment (which is still better than a forehanded insult), but the ’89 Cubs are better than you’d expect.” Thanks, guys! However begrudgingly, the ‘fork went on to get positive: “They leaven these shopworn chord changes with unusual yet intuitively sensible variations, lacing their songs with kinks, hiccups, spaz-outs, and atmospheric passages that constantly refresh their capacity to surprise and engage…. There Are Giants in the Earth could be the sleeper hit of the year.”

And just the other year — 2014 — the album received its (probably) final review as part of the Waxing Nostalgic series at the website Modern Superior, which declared, “Ryan Fox lets words fall out of his mouth like he could give no fuck about enunciation.” (Guilty as charged. — RF) Later, the review enthuses: “There Are Giants in the Earth sits perfectly on the fence between being both accessible and immediately catchy, but also dense and ambitious; it tends to let the songs bake for a while before getting to the goodies. You’ll have to be willing to go along for the ride with an album like this, and if you are willing to go on that ride though, holy crap it is a masterpiece of stunning proportions…. It would try my patience to think of an album more criminally overlooked as There Are Giants in the Earth – it’s just that good.”