|Collective Concerts & HomestickTO|
Present… MODERN BASEBALL W/ PUP, Jeff Rosenstock, Tiny Moving Parts, Tiny Moving Parts
Doors 7pm all ages & 19+ $20 at https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/933627
General tickets go on sale on Fri. Aug 14, 2015 12:00 PM EDT.
We Cool? is expertly-crafted, as perfect and unexpectedly uplifting a collection of songs about debilitating depression could be. From the deceptively subtle introduction of opener “Get Old Forever” to the reinvention of the album’s musical and lyrical themes that elevate finale “Darkness Records,” We Cool? succeeds in building on Rosenstock’s existing body of work while branching out to become his most ambitious and vital release to date. Which, if you’ve been paying attention, is no mean feat.
For the past ten years, Rosenstock stood at the helm of Brooklyn-based DIY stalwarts Bomb the Music Industry! – a collective that pioneered pay-what-you-can self-recorded albums, offered hand-created merch for donations and still managed to tour the world. Their final shows were beer-soaked Irish wakes for an international collection of misfits and passionate weirdos. They were huge – like a 1982 cult movie come to consume the drive-in – and then, they were over.
After a decade of not only traveling in the same weathered van, but also spent attempting to passionately record densely-layered punk anthems in noisy practice spaces and crowded New York City apartments, Rosenstock was due for a change of scenery. So he went to California.
Recorded by Jack Shirley (Joyce Manor, Deafheaven), whose Bay area Atomic Garden studio played host to Rosenstock’s new band, We Cool? is sonically ambitious, overdriven, and immediate. Along with a band featuring Hard Girls guitarist Mike Huguenor, Bruce Lee Band drummer Kevin Higuchi, and former Bomb bassist John DeDomenici, the foundation of each song was recorded live to tape inside of a day. We Cool? layers its harmonies, organs, and clarinets on top of this energetic, barebones base, recalling earlier melodic motifs or creating massive climaxes that carry the listener through its twelve songs. With additional elements added in the customary New York apartments and parents’ homes that Rosenstock is known for, every song here possesses its own unique character, from the ’90s post-punk dirge of “I’m Serious, I’m Sorry” to the vintage power-pop of “Hey Allison!.”
There’s another, more subtle element that makes We Cool? the clearest distillation of Rosenstock’s songwriting talents – a stark, unadorned lyrical approach that doesn’t mask much of the tumult of the last few years of his life. For him, this is something of a breakup album – a marker of the end of a fulfilling decade-long relationship with the close friends who comprised Bomb the Music Industry! over the years. It’s a lament for not only the band itself, but the community that was built around it. These songs were written with no audience in mind, and that uncertainty left Rosenstock free to be as dark and direct as he needed.
Like so many great albums, it can be easy to miss that darkness when you’re caught arm-in-arm with your friends singing yourself hoarse. But like the best albums, nothing is ever that simple, and the soundtrack of last night’s euphoria becomes suddenly introspective in the cold light of the morning. And We Cool? is one of those albums.
Tiny Moving Parts
When it comes to Tiny Moving Parts, a literal family band from the tiny town of Benson, MN, there’s no problem operating in close quarters. Vocalist/guitarist Dylan Mattheisen and his cousins–bassist Matthew Chevalier and drummer Billy Chevalier, who are brothers–have been best friends since their childhood. As Mattheisen puts it: “We’d be hanging out every day no matter what.”
Growing up in what many people would simply describe as “the middle of nowhere,” Mattheisen and his bandmates didn’t have the same path into punk music as most young people do. Without a structured or storied local scene, the three found music on their own terms and created a positive connection to it from the beginning.
In fact, the first thing you realize when you talk to the guys in Tiny Moving Parts is how much joy they derive from being on the road. They’ve used their music to visit places they never thought they’d be able to go while growing up on the sprawling farmlands of their Minnesota hometown, which houses just 3,000 residents. They’ve built connections with people all over the country, delivering the same positive attitude they’ve had toward music all their lives to people who they never thought they’d meet. And, perhaps most impressively, Mattheisen and his cousins are the type of band that appreciates even the nuances of being on the road–navigating their way into a city for the first time, sleeping on living room floors, setting up and breaking down their gear, even the long overnight drives–it’s not only worth it to Tiny Moving Parts, it’s a part of their essence. The permanent smiles on their faces while they’re playing will make you believe that before they even finish their opening song.
The group’s positive mindset and close relationship helped them “figure out their sound” over the past couple of years, as Mattheisen says. Their new album, Pleasant Living, out September 9 via Triple Crown Records, showcases a band that has moved past its growing pains and is finding its tride. From the youthful exuberance and frenetic drum work on the opening “Sundress” to the purposefully suppressed yet intense closer “Van Beers,” it’s apparent from first listen that Tiny Moving Parts knew exactly what they wanted to do with Pleasant Living. And with the help of producer extraordinaire J. Robbins, they were able to get right down to it in a fashion that excels their sophomore status, entering the realm of veteran pomp. Pleasant Living isn’t afraid to belt you with its power, it isn’t apologetic about being in your face–and neither are the lively personas behind the band.
“I think we’ve found a happy balance here,” Mattheisen says of his band’s follow-up to 2013’s This Couch Is Long And Full Of Friendship (Kind Of Like Records). “It’s mathy, it’s complex, it’s thought-out, but there’s still an element of having fun sing-along songs in there. We really can’t wait for people to hear the album.” Lead single “Always Focused” defines the dynamic Mattheisen speaks of, with a noodly guitar riff and cries of, “I let myself down when I beat myself up.” He says it’s a song about worrying: “Even though I overthink everything, I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
Where This Couch Is Long was a story of a young person trying to discover themselves, Pleasant Living accurately reflects the group’s collective unbridled enthusiasm; it’s a record about finding a way to remain optimistic in life. It’s honest punk rock written by three guys from the Midwest who are experiencing the world together for the first time, and it’s a record that Tiny Moving Parts will take to every person who will listen.
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W/ PUP, Jeff Rosenstock, Tiny Moving Parts, Tiny Moving Parts
- Doors: 7PM
- Show: 7:30PM
Tickets:ALL AGES & 19+
- $SOLD OUT