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Pedro the Lion

Pedro the Lion is all about using guitars and drums to construct forums for asking provocative, open-ended questions that don't necessarily have answers. Many of these questions deal openly with God -- the Christian one, that is -- but they do so in a direct, unsmarmy, unsentimental fashion, so His presence in Pedro the Lion's songs does not subtract from the music (as it so often does for so many purveyors of so-called "Christian rock").

The band -- named after principal member David Bazan's idea for a children's book character -- has been crafting their deeply personal melodic pop since 1995. After numerous personnel changes, Bazan finally settled on a lineup he could live with: himself. On the 2000 Pedro the Lion album, Winners Never Quit, Bazan played all the instruments, and recorded and produced the album himself in his Seattle home studio. The album consists primarily of gentle, slightly strained, introspective numbers, with a few guitar-heavy rockers thrown in, including the disturbing, vivid "Never Leave a Job Half Done." This is classic-sounding indie rock, often reminiscent of the folky, sensitive, Lou Barlow-derived side of Sebadoh or Mark Eitzel's American Music Club. A few months after Winners Never Quit, Suicide Squeeze Records released Bazan's Progress EP, featuring four songs that continue in the mold of Winners.

Pedro the Lion has one other full-length, '98's It's Hard to Find a Friend, and two EPs, '97's Whole and '99's The Only Reason I Feel Secure. Bazan also plays in the slow instrumental pop band Unwed Sailor.