Her Next Friend – “Her Next Friend” By Marcus Pan All of this electro this and techno that and who knows what's being created by a person and what is being sampled and tracked by some inhuman computer somewhere with an 8 year old pushing the buttons on a track mixer, hmm? Well...here's a treat for those of you that long for the good old fashioned days. Solid, guitar rock with introspective lyrics and a bit of stoner style but not so much that you need to be tripping to like it. It's barbecue season here in Joisey, kiddies – it's time to blast the riffs! Enter Her Next Friend from norther Virginia. Cranking up the blues, garaging the punk and simply smacking the modern mainstream with fervor, the 8 year old electro kiddies can't touch good old fashioned blues laced rock 'n roll baby. Lead by John Whitfield Burton, previously a U.S. Army officer (thanks man!), this five song self-titled EP is energy filled and raw. With the Reed-like vocals of Cats in the Garage to the baritone croonings of Days Worth Living For, Burton may not be the best singer I've ever heard but he doesn't have to be. His guitar speaks for him well enough with fast paced, catchy riffs perfect for air guitaring to monster solos in virtually every track. Power ballad Handwritten Message infuses shades of Bruce Springstein without the beer-drinking glory days cliches. I really dig Her Next Friend. It's a good summer soundtrack arriving just in time. Pure rock 'n roll – none of the additives. I'd like to see more of his work. I'd also like to hear him and, say, Mike Comfort(1) get together. They'll remind the whole world what rock 'n roll is about if that were to happen.” - Marcus Pan

Legends Magazine

If your musical taste consist of good old rock & roll music with some classic punk rock roots, then this group is for you. This cd is raw & original and is saturated with enough guitar rhythm and lyrical melody to satisfy any Neil Young or Sex Pistols fan anywhere. A true garage rock band destined for something great. Their sound may not be for everybody though, especially those who consider themselves to be the "elite hipsters" on emo/indie bands, who often cannot distinguish between musical talent and the sound of their own voice. So, if your looking for that one cd to really jam out to and sing along with, you found it. Long live rock and roll !!!” - Patrick from San Antonio, Texas

CD Baby

I've got to say that Rain Days is now one of my all time favourite songs. This entire disk is fantastic. Her Next Friend is its own genre of music!” - Mar

CD Baby, Shovel Magazine

HER NEXT FRIEND Her Next Friend Antipoison John Whitfield Burton wrote all five songs and sings and plays guitar. He is accompanied by Joe Parsons on drums and background vocals, Kevin Neimond on bass guitar, and Shannon on backing vocals on the final track. The album was recorded at Actiondale Studios in Annandale, Virginia, but sans liner notes I would’ve thought this was a British band. It’s very poppy and quite well accomplished.”

Nightflying: The Entertainment Guide

With a list of influences as diverse as Captain Beefheart and Eric Avery, Virginia based power trio Her Next Friend dodges rock stereotypes like a cat burglar dodges police. And since the band couldn’t quite settle on one particular style of music the band just decided to cram it all in their debut five song EP. At times sounding like the Velvets gone power pop or The Pastels on speed Her Next Friend is quirky enough to keep things moving along without getting stuck in a puddle of dull. The band’s songs are catchy and have enough, "Woo hoo’s," melodies, and harmonies to supply the Beach Boys. In addition to that, John Burton’s deep baritone vocals are endearing while darkly intriguing. At times they sound a little out of tune which lends itself to the Pastels comparison and whether intentional or not, they’re kind of cool like that. The five songs on Her Next Friend are good rockers in all sorts of transitional phases. You name it they’ve got it covered. ”Cat’s in the Garage,” is a classic power pop that’s as sticky and sweet as molasses, "Isolde," is a bluesy distorted rocker that has elements of the VU written all over it. “Days Worth Living For,” could really almost be a rocked out Pastels song. It sounds slightly out of tune yet it is honest enough and catchy enough to be a cool pop tune. “Rain Days,” is a darkly intriguing, deeply sung tune, about what seems to be a serial killer. It’s perfect for the Velvet Undeground touched blues ballad. Really the only letdown on the EP is “Handwritten Message.” It gets bogged down in the stereotypical lyrical clichés and loses steam about half way in. Her Next Friend is an EP chock full of pop, rock, blues, chills, thrills, baritone voices, harmonies, and even a bit of the kitchen sink. It’s an entertaining and dark pop record that for a first effort holds a lot of promise. Here’s hoping that a full length is in the works.” - Paul Zimmerman

First Coast News

This is a raw, edgy and throughly enjoyable CD. Burton's lyrics are soulful and inspring. I highly recommend that you buy this CD.” - Allen Grant

CD Baby

Hey dudes wuz up! I got one of these at the rehearsal space and i absolutely love it! great work! true rock'n'roll CATS IN THE GARAGE IS MY FAVORITE SONG! PEACE!” - Papas Underground

CD Baby

Hard Rock VA- 5 track EP- rate: 4/8 This band reminds me of acdc, except angus swapped spots with eddie from van halen and the singer merged with danzig. haha. That sums it up pretty good. Production yet again, is awsome. But this generation of hard rock has come and passed. The older, bar going crowd would love them. Her next friend also has a country feel to their songs, lyrics are great, completely unexpected, borderline demented, but not completely there. I would never buy the album though, and its still not metal, but its tolerable.”

Strictly Heavy Management

Sounds like: Unobtrusive background music for a laid-back date. B- The debut of northern Virginian John Whitfield Burton's new rock band Her Next Friend is fun, in a non-threatening kind of way. The self-titled EP's five tracks sound like they'd go great with a date and a beer when the band plays Georgetown's Grog and Tankard on May 7, but the CD itself is nothing extraordinary. It's the kind of music you enjoy while it's coming out of the speakers, but largely forget about once it stops. Although the album as a whole is a bit boring, none of the songs are terrible, and two are actually pretty decent. High-energy opener "Cats in the Garage" is a cross between British and American mid-'90s sensibilities, sounding like Graham Coxon jamming with Semisonic. The last song, "Rain Days," is the most interesting of the set: a haunting four and half minute journey of finger-picked acoustic and electric solos. Although it's difficult to recommend buying the CD, one really can't go wrong checking out Her Next Friend live this May. The band probably isn't going to blow you away, but they could make you smile.” - Adam Bender

The Eagle (American University)

Northern Virginia modern rock band, Her Next Best Friend, will not befriend any one’s music collection. The band offers nothing new in an industry that is constantly looking for cutting-edge artists. The band’s sound has a hint of classic folk, euro rock with bluesy and pop melodies similar to the Spin Doctors and Gin Blossoms. Sadly, this is not the 1990s and there is a reason why those groups are no longer popular. At best, the album is excessive college rock. At worst, it is unfinished and amateurish. The songs on the album try to be raw and meaningful, the hallmark of indie music, but the end product is a combination of hollowed guitar, out-of-tune vocals and uninspired lyrics. In “Days Worth Living For” lead singer and songwriter John Whitfield Burton sings, “Horoscopes suggest that she’s a Taurus/Certified inside as a freakasaurus.” Sometimes, for example in “Handwritten Message” and “Days Worth Living For,” Burton was off key. While Burton and bassist Kevin Neimond were skilled and powerful, the guitar solos in “Rain Days” and “Cats in the Garage” were out of place and a bit too long. At times, it seemed as though Burton was trying to showcase his skills instead of adding to the quality of the record. By far, the best track was “Rain Days.” It had a sophisticated sound the other tracks lacked but fell short of being a hit. Lacking a professional sound, Her Next Best Friend is at best a few steps above a sensitive garage band. Hopefully Her Next Friend will have better luck next time.” - Miatta Cleveland

The Broadside (George Mason University)