Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I can't believe it! I actually get to post something about our record on our recording blog!

So, there was a bit of drama a bit ago. Our record took longer to track than it should have. Also, Walla had a little bit of border-crossing trouble that involved his hard drive getting detained between Canada and USA. Luckily, our files were all safe as it wasn't the hard drive with our recordings, but it just added to the delay of getting ours finished. All of this got compounded when Chris started working on the new Death Cab record (so selfish, right?). So it became apparant that we'd need extra help to get our album finished.

With that said, i'm very glad to announce that Alex Newport will be mixing some of the record. We're big fans of work he's done, he's personally responsible for one of my favorite records (In/Casino/Out by At The Drive-In), and when we met him in New York it just all made sense. So yes, Chris Walla will be doing some mixes and Alex Newport will be doing some mixes and we will be giving each other a lot of high fives as the end of our album is in sight!

We'll let you know who's putting it out when we have any idea at all.

Monday, October 22, 2007


It's been a few days now, so unfortunately i have to summarize. Here are 7 small paragraphs that all start with "We":

-We had an excellent CMJ. That's all.

-We played in the basement of a dorm complex in Troy, NY and it was one of the sweatiest shows we've ever played. We stayed on the couches in the venue area and watched 2001: A Space Odyssey on a projector screen with the music playing over the PA.

-We, along with our friend Alan, visited the Pumpkin Festival in Keene, New Hampshire on our way to Boston. 30,000 Jack-O-Lanterns. We were talking on the way in about how we'd never played New Hampshire, and at the festival we were able to weasel our way onto the "Jesus Is Lord Tour" stage and played 5 songs. We have now played 43 states.

-We love Great Scott in Boston, MA and we love The Octopus Project and we love Ho-Ag. So, be default, our show with Octopus Project and Ho-Ag at Great Scott in Boston a few days ago was awesome.

-We (collectively) hate turnpikes. We spent 10 hours turnpike-ing from Boston to Meadville, PA to play a very fun show at the coffee shop at Allegheny College.

-We (collectively), in response to our hatred of turnpikes, took a back-road route to Bowling Green, OH instead of going on the Ohio Pike. This was a great idea, as we had never seen a "HORSE AND BUGGY CROSSING" sign before, nor had we ever seen the Horse and Buggy cross a road, as warned by the sign.

-We are playing in Bowling Green, fittingly, with a band called Wee.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Yesterday was pretty awesome. Our showcase went really well, we saw some old friends (The Photo Atlas, Ian Anderson) and made some new ones (Alex Newport, Moros Eros). Life is good. I wish there was a way to exchange a high five through the monitor with anybody reading this, but technology has not quite met up with my demands.

Today is our "fun day". We don't really have any plans other than the French Kiss Records showcase and the Barsuk/Sub-pop/Suicide Squeeze/Touch and Go/every-other-indie-label party at midnight. Nothing to play, nowhere to be, nobody to try to impress. It shall be sweet.

We've never been to South by Southwest, and this is our first CMJ, and it's better than i thought it would be. It's like a weird indie rock utopia. Today is our last day, then we're off to continue our tour. We will be home in less than a week! Wow.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007



2 PM - go to Soundfix records in Brooklyn to watch our pay Erik Bogle play in the Fatal Flying Guillotines/loan them equipment
5 PM - go to Cake Shop in Manhattan to load in for the Hello Sir showcase
7 PM - go back to Brooklyn, attend a party held by Alex Newport at his studio
11 PM - play at the Cake Shop

This is exciting.

We went to see a move (Frank and Cindy) last night at the Museum of Modern art. It was curated by This American Life and Ira Glass held a Q and A afterwards. Not much else to say, it was just pretty cool.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Foooood and Muuuuuusic

One of the best things a human can do for another human is to make them a meal. I'm sitting in a kitchen in New Jersey, watching the squirrels and the chipmunks scramble for fallen acorns while a family friend of Griffin's is cooking us eggs. Awesome.

We will spend today and the two following days in New York for the CMJ music conference. We don't have a whole lot of definite plans other than to actually play. I'd like to catch Lifetime and Modern Life is War tonight, but the Bouncing Souls are headlining and that just doesn't seem like something I want to be a part of.

Slaraffenland is the best difficult-to-pronounce band from another country that we have ever played with.

Monday, October 15, 2007

People will be people when they eat this sandwich.

Why is waking up at 9 AM so hard to do?

Pittsburgh and St. Louis seem like they could be friends. They're both fairly industrial and not very pretty on the surface. Both are places where if you didn't know anybody there, you would not have a good time; they're both places where you have to make your own fun. Also, St. Louis took all of the hypothetical metal that Pittsburgh used to make a shit-ton of bridges to make a big-ass silver arch*.

Today is Philadelphia and show/post-show dinner with Pattern is Movement, a band that we're friends with so we always forget that they're the WEIRDEST BAND IN THE UNIVERSE. And weird bands make space jesus cry.

We Versus the Shark stopped by the house we've been at and hung out/stayed. It feels like we're on tour with them, since we've seen them once already and are going to see them in New York. New York will be fun. New York will be good. New York is important. New York is the reason we're on this tour.

*There's that one Q and Not U song where they say "every town needs and Eiffel Tower tonight", and i know what they mean and agree.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

It's hard to post when a guy is impersonating a bear in the next room over (and doing a great job at it)

Today we are going to embark on this mission:

step 1: go to Guitar Center
step 2: buy new "Little Big Muff" pedal
step 3: take out of box, put Griffin's broken "Little Big Muff" pedal in its place
step 4: return pedal to different Guitar Center
step 5: high fives

Wish us luck.

Last night was an 8 band house show in Pittsburgh. The cops came, not because of the show, but because of the meth head that was walking around grabbing ass and boobs.

Speaking of boobs, the best thing we've heard on this tour is something along the lines of "dude, I love boobs so much that you could put a nipple on some dude's belly and i'd probably get turned on" Is this a you-had-to-be-there?

Things that are making this tour great for me: the new Weakerthans record, "Blankets" by Craig Thomson, and finding recording nerds to geek out with.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Lazy blogging = catch up

Here is a quick summary of the last few days:

WEDNESDAY: very fun house show in Blacksburg, VA, barbecue restaurant in Greensboro with intense mural of space jesus*, bag of Laffy Taffy, most quiet dance party ever (sleeping roommate), first failed attempt to get guitar center to replace cracked-ass cymbal for free.

THURSDAY: new Radiohead record, un-fun bar show in Washington DC, realization that just because some of your favorite bands are from a place doesn't make that place cool, Motel 6.

FRIDAY: Chinese restaurant, mostly fun warehouse show in Leymoyne, PA, being chiller whales at a parent house, second failed attempt to get guitar center to replace cracked-ass cymbal for free.

Today we go to Pittsburgh to play a house show and visit some friends. It shall be a good time.

*space jesus is a mysteriously inappropriate mural of a view of earth and the moon from outer space, with a gigantic translucent face of jesus in between the two. There is one lone tear coming from space jesus's eye. This is, of course, how floods and hurricanes happen.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


We made a visit to the offices of Team Clermont yesterday, and now we have a plague-level of CDs in the van. They're everywhere. We're infested with jewel cases. We are going to try to listen to all of them. We're going semi alphabetically, and yesterday we did Akron/Family, Christina Aguilera, Alterbridge, and a few random indie bands with names like Arks and Airiel. I was expecting a bit more out of Christina, but she dropped the ball. Most of the songs are about how great music is, which is redundant. It's kind of like a whole album of "Sir Duke" by Stevie Wonder, but without the sweet horn break.

Played the Two Art Chicks space in Greensboro, NC last night and stayed with our pal Jeremy. I believe a chinese buffet may be in order today. Last night, we shared the bill with The Bronzed Chorus, who blew our minds. If you click that link, make sure to know that it's a 2 piece band. We've been very lucky on bands we've played with so far.

Today is a house party in Blacksburg, VA. I think our DC show tomorrow will officially be the end of vacation and the start of tour.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

more Athens, mour Tour, mo' Money, mo' Problems

IS ANYBODY GOING TO CMJ?!? because WE ARE! I'm excited, as it'll be our first time there or at any other super schmoozy music festival (cough SXSW cough).

I slept well last night, despite the many distractions (trains, brutal sunlight, Griffin snoring). We've been in Athens for 4 days now, and I'm going to miss it. Luke from WVTS said it best: "It's like a big episode of Cheers except everybody wears aviators." Also, everybody in Athens is good looking and dresses well. It's absurd. Hanging out in a group sometimes feels like somebody should be videotaping you for a PBR commercial.

Today we will go to Greensboro, NC, a town we have played once and hung out in thrice. We will drive there, we will play, and then we will chill out with Jeremy, former second drummer for Cinemechanica. It will be a good time.

Depending on how soon all the other Dyna-bros get ready, we may stop by the Team Clermont office for some high fives and promo cds. Bob Kay has a cd/cassette combo, so we've been making it a point to listen to every cd that is given to us. Usually we end up with a big stack of unlistened-to cds, but this is not the case (now the highways are just extra littered with bad cds we've gotten [throwing cds out of the window when they suck is especially satisfying {we know that's littering and bad for the environment and all, but the physical act of removing bad music from your life is worth it}])

Monday, October 8, 2007

Atlanta, Flowers, Chicken

The road from Athens to Atlanta is a tricky one. It's all state highways with lots of stop lights, and we always seem to miss the same one and have to pull out the atlas.

The best lineup we've ever been lucky enough to play 3 times is the one with us, Cinemechanica, and We Versus the Shark. Last night we played with both at the Drunken Unicorn in "Hotlanta", another one of those venues we've heard of but never played. I was pleasantly surprised by how literal the club's decorations are; there are lots of murals of unicorns that appear intoxicated. I'm especially fond of one featuring a unicorn and wine-bottle-holding-Moses peering out over a rainbow that bisects a flaming red camaro. That may end up next to !!! on the you-just-have-to-see-it list.

Outside of the Drunken Unicorn, a homeless man kept trying to give people semi-wilted bouquets of flowers, but wasn't asking for anything in return. This actually sketched us out even more, because we didn't understand his motivations. Are we supposed to offer money in exchange? Does he just want to spread some love around? Should we touch the flowers?

Our pre-show meal was at a Southern cooking restaurant called Eatz. The choices were basically pasta or meat. While most of the Shark/Cinemechanica crew went in the pasta line, we ended up in the meat line. I ordered the Jerk Chicken (spicy) with corn on the cob and baked potato and they gave me HALF OF A CHICKEN! Very intimidating.

We are now back in Athens for our 2nd day off here, and then we will officially be on tour and not on vacation.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Record Status, Tour, Van, Alabama,

Our lack of updates on this blog are because our record is sort of at a stand-still point. We finished the tracking, and are waiting on the mixing. Our record took longer than we thought to record, which already ate into Chris Walla's available time to mix. On top of that, he had some issues at the Canadian border while working on his solo record AND he just started working on his real band's album. So we've been trying to figure out how to outsource some of the songs to someone else to have them do mixes. It's all a bit weird, but we're just kind of playing the waiting game right now. With that said, we have no no no idea when our record is going to be out.

With that said, we're going to turn this into a touring blog for the time being as to not be negligent. Soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo....

We loaded up Bob Kay and left at 1PM on Thursday. Bob Kay is a gorgeous dark blue Ford E350 15 passenger van that is lovingly named after Griffin's dad. It's the same type of van we had before, and the inside looks almost identical. This kind of gets to me from time to time, since the last time any of us were in a vehicle like this it flipped on the highway. I was driving the first shift, and every time a wind gust hit us or the road was bumpy from construction I got a little queasy. I feel more comfortable now that I've been in it for a few hours, I guess I got too used to being in cars for a few months.

We landed at the Flying Monkey Arts center (one of our favorite venues), and found out that: A. the ironically named local band, The Arrivals, was not going to arrive. B. there was no P.A. to speak of. There were also no people there except the volunteer at the door. Everything fell into place, but it was scary for a bit. It was a nice, informal show, and we played 11 songs. It may have been our longest set ever.

After that, we drove to Athens, GA and we've been there ever since. Friday, we played an AWESOME show in Athens with a band called Powers. It's 4 guitars (including Luke from We Versus the Shark and Bryant from Cinemechanica) and a drummer (Mike from Cinemechanica), and they set up their guitars on opposite corners of the room and play in the center. They're a quadrophonic instrumental band, and it was pretty mindblowing.

Yesterday, we went to Six Flags FRIGHT FEST in Atlanta! Luke from WVTS is a roller coaster connoisseur, and his knowledge of the park is truly FRIGHTFUL. We had such a good time, it was SCARY. The lines were EERILY short for a Saturday.

The best Fright Fest themed decoration around the park was a skeleton fisherman hanging out by one of the ponds with a fishing pole that had a skeleton fish at the end of it. The cobweb-covered skeleton on on of the ladders of the who-wants-to-try-to-climb-this-sketchy-rope-ladder-ninja-warrior-style game was a close second, and the skeleton in the red flyer wagon was a comfortable third. Also, I'm glad to see that Thriller-era Michael Jackson attire is still the standard for dancing zombies.

Last night, we saw !!! at the 40 Watt in Athens. Wow. I HATE HATE HATE when somebody's defense of a band is "you have to see them live" but holy shit, dude, you have to see !!! live. They've moved out of being the indie-rock dance jam band and now they're almost an indie rock r&b band, complete with some sassy female vocals. I always thought their dude singer, with classic lines like "uh, uh, uh, uh, uh" and "shake that butt", was a doofus and now i understand that he is completely 100% a doofus. But now i understand the charm of it. Dude just wants to dance, and he totally doesn't give a shit if it looks cool. He's working the crowd, and his guard is completely down. He also played the agogo bells in the sound booth for the monitors and was dancing all up on their own monitor guy. I dug it.

Tonight: Atlanta, Guitar Center, load-in, food, show, drive back to Athens, sleep late.