Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Stage Fright? Yeah, Right.

The domestic creature I have morphed into (sorry for clogging your feeds with pictures of a loaf of bread...) may not pass muster with the reality of my early twenties: more weekends than not, you would've found me on the stage (or in the corner of a room) with my brothers-in-sound, plying our woolly version of garage-psych-pop across the South...the Midwest...the East...the Plains...pretty much anywhere that would have us (and a few places that wouldn't). By my amateur count, not including practices, the number of shows I was physically present to play at exceeds 400.

For whomever is keeping stats: that's 3.7% of the nights in my entire life.

The halcyon days of thoughtfully rocking.

Fast-forward ten years or so: I took the stage twice this year. Twice. My percentage must've taken a hit. Those two performances though, would've been highlights in many past years, and included a magical aforementioned set with Athens, GA-based Circulatory System, and our seventh or so set at the annual Second Helpings Tonic Ball, which was ten feverish, sweaty minutes of Velvet Underground chord-bashing.

"Oh yeah," my body said, while gripping an ice-cold Hamm's in the overfull backstage room, "that's a helluva lot of fun." Which brings me to my realization for 2015: I like to play shows, and I should play more of them. And go to a few more, along the way...

But, like any artist knows, reality is an illusion unless you plan to go do something. So, I'm hoping a couple key things transpire that will be the impetus to sling some gear around in my hatchback and hassle my friends with a minimal amount of shameless promotion (just enough to let a hint of guilt into their conscience should they choose not to attend).

  • a new Wooves record. Yes, I've talked about this before – the band formed from close friends who needed an excuse to hang out in a decrepit Eastside basement. Then, it turned out that we weren't that terrible (though, fair warning, it's still basement-produced-slacker-rock). Despite having but a single show under our belt (a year ago in October), we finally finished a second ten-song album, which should be out late this Winter in early 2015. And! We had a successful rehearsal, to quote a witness who was upstairs whilst we fogged the cellar with incense, Old Overholt fumes, and practice amp fuzz, "It sounded like there was a real band down there." That's basically a Christgau A+ for us. Springtime should see our new set unleashed upon the Illinois-Indiana highway corridor.
  • some weirdo-skronk-experimentalism-turned-exercise-in-excess-and-restraint that gathers in a garage in-town to record noises to tape. It's a secret but it's not a secret. Rumor has it that a set will be carved out of the cut-n-paste spliced sound memories so that we may inhabit the corner of a stranger's party, or other such non-stage-space. I'm even contemplating a gear purchase for the first time since I had to buy a double-keyboard stand some five years ago.

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