Lovers Lane
Rialto Square Theatre
Avondale Music Hall
ATT Internet 75

We’re getting the band back together

| July 6, 2011

Those words might seem cringe-worthy for, say, Loverboy or someone. But coming from Archers Of Loaf, one of the true progenitors of indie rock, they’re welcome words – fightin’ words. They play Friday, as do Yob and The Wooden Birds.

Alongside bands like Superchunk, Sebadoh, Polvo, Gaunt, Shiner, and others, Chapel Hill, NC- based Archers Of Loaf came up in the early ’90s, keeping clubs packed and bristling with a marriage of post-punk and post-modern pop that was sharp in its ability to be brilliant with seemingly little effort to do anything more than give the crowd a good time. After a lengthy hiatus, singer/guitarist Eric Bachmann, guitarist Eric Johnson, bassist Matt Gentling, and drummer Mark Price decided to get together in late 2010, which led to a secret show in January at the Cat’s Cradle, which led to the current 20-date summer tour.

All of this builds up to a well-deserved reissue of their 1993 debut, Icky Mettle (handled by Merge Records), which was remastered by Electrical Audio savant Bob Weston. The August 2nd release will include bonus material, including the equally prodigious Vs. The Greatest Of All Time EP, as well as singles and B-sides. (Friday & Saturday@Bottom Lounge with Blank Banker and Ifihadahifi, respectively.)

— Penelope Biver

Slackened, detuned guitar strings, queasy riffs, tortured howls — oh yes, Yob have a new album. The law-abiding among you won’t have Atma (Profound Lore) in your speakers until August 16th, and thus will have to inhale its scorched fields during this surprise, pre-release show. Yob would be stars in Chicago even if they never released another album, such is the power of having a hamburger named for you at Kuma’s Corner. Atma‘s hardly the work of superficial influence, but with the way the waves lap the shores during “Before We Dreamed Of Two,” you can suspect this is where Mastodon might have gone after Leviathan, after bingeing on bottle after bottle of Type Ø Negative. We only just got the record yesterday and will reserve full judgment until the September issue, but so far, so good. (Friday@Subterranean with Dark Castle and Indian.)

Muting instruments while playing them always offers a great trick, because it somehow gives them greater presence. While their definitely are brightly struck chords on Two Matchsticks (Barsuk), the guitars get a greater kick when slapped like redheaded stepchildren*. American Analog Set vet Andrew Kenny brought The Wooden Birds into the studio for their second album, and this time enlisted old friend Leslie Sisson and Matt Pond to sing with him and not really play their instruments as intended. The result is a hushed album with a propulsive rhythmic identity, and one that can see you give yourself a Charley horse if you don’t pay attention. (Friday@Hideout with Roommate.)

— Steve Forstneger

*Don’t slap redheaded stepchildren.

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Category: Stage Buzz, Weekly

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