The Bowery Ballroom
Tapes 'n Tapes

Tapes 'n Tapes

Howler, The Static Jacks

Fri, September 30, 2011

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Bowery Ballroom

New York, NY

$16 advance / $18 day of show

This event is 18 and over

Tapes 'n Tapes
Tapes 'n Tapes
Tapes ‘n Tapes is a rock band from Minneapolis, MN, made up of Josh Grier on guitar and lead vocals, Matt Kretzmann on keys and horns, Erik Appelwick on bass guitar and backing vocals, and Jeremy Hanson on percussion.

Grier said he formed the band in 2003, to “have fun with my friends. I always wanted to see if I could play music with others and for others.” Grier and his buddies amassed “tapes ‘n tapes” of noodling, experimental jams and declared themselves officially a band.

In the winter of 2004, the band now known as Tapes ‘n Tapes bought some recording equipment and headed out to a rustic cabin in the woods of Wisconsin. They recorded their self-titled, now long out of print, seven song EP in three days. Songs like “Beach Girls” and “50’s Parking” from the EP are still in their live set today.

Next up for the band was recording their critically acclaimed follow up, The Loon. Appelwick recorded, mixed and produced the eleven song record with the band in one week at a friend’s home studio. The Loon came out in November of 2005 on ibid records, and no one was ready for what came next. People started to notice the foursome’s jangly, melodic brand of rock and the band started touring – gaining more and more attention from music critics and fans all over the world. Even the Thin White Duke took notice. “’Insistor’ is the first single, and it's cracking. It was a slow grower, but once that chorus digs in there's really no escape,” said Mr. David Bowie. The prestigious XL Recordings re-released The Loon in July of 2006, the same month Tapes ‘n Tapes made their national television debut on the Late Show with David Letterman.

The band then toured around the world for the next few years- playing shows with the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Spoon, Cold War Kids, The Black Keys, Echo & the Bunnymen, and The Wrens. In 2006 they were honored to play Reading/Leeds, and 2007 saw them rock out at Lollapalooza and Coachella.

When starting to work out songs for their follow up, Walk It Off, the band was asked who their dream producer was. The obvious answer to them was Mr. Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, MGMT). With twelve songs in hand, the band made the jaunt to upstate New York to live and work with Fridmann for two amazing weeks- one week in September 2007 to record and one week in October 2007 to mix. However, years of touring, the political climate, and distance from friends and family had changed the band, and given them a different point of view- one that seemed to pervade their sound. Spin praised the record saying, “the tunes are tighter and performances far more dynamic and aggressive…..they can now pull off jittery punk and understated, graceful melancholy.” XL released Walk It Off in April of 2008, on the same day the band made their debut on Conan O’Brien.

After touring and supporting Walk It Off for the following year, it was time for a little R & R- rest and relaxation. They purposefully took their time and tried to get back to a place where the band was fun, and not work. They also decided to go back to their roots and do everything on their own, with no label involvement. They cut ties with XL, and re-launched ibid records, their own label which initially released The Loon. The brothers tapes had saved their pennies over the years and set out to make the record they’ve always wanted to make – Outside. They wanted to record at home and self-produce, which they did over two weeks at The Terrarium in Minneapolis, MN in March of 2010. The next step was getting the talented Mr. Peter Katis (Interpol, The National) to lend his ears to the mix. Grier spent two more weeks in Bridgeport, CT, while Katis mixed the record to perfection. The result is twelve songs that are playful and melodic, while also capturing the essence and energy of their live show. Grier said, “We had a great time making Outside and we wanted our enjoyment of the process to be audible in the recording, and I think we succeeded.” One thing is for sure, Tapes ‘n Tapes feel like they are making music for the right reasons – fun and pure love for music. And as Grier always says, “Everything else is gravy.” Outside will be released on January 11, 2011.

Tapes ‘n Tapes is set to release their new album – Outside – through their own label, ibid records, the original home to the band’s breakthrough album, The Loon. Outside was recorded at The Terrarium in their hometown of Minneapolis by their long time sound engineer, Drew Malamud. After recording for two weeks, they handed the record off to Peter Katis (Interpol, The National) to lend his signature sound to the mix.

The result is twelve songs that are playful and melodic, while also capturing the essence and energy of their live show. Outside sounds refined and lush, letting the memorable melodies shine. The songs are more straightforward allowing each member’s personality to emerge. Outside is the perfect mix of their previous works, with a whole new clarity of sound. The first single, “Freak Out,” is a fast-paced romp with a shout-along chorus that is sure to delight fans both new and old. The album’s opener, “Badaboom,” showcases longing vocals with a driving rhythm that propels the song into an epic rock breakdown. “Nightfall’s” seemingly disparate parts are woven together into a beautifully strange break-up ballad. The haunting horns and sparse guitars unite for one of Tapes ‘n Tapes biggest songs yet. “One In The World” is a danceable, jangly number about a search for love that takes you around the globe. The twelve songs on Outside are unified by themes of longing and loneliness, and the journey of finding and losing love. There is a newfound space in Tapes ‘n Tapes sound that is both intimate and distant at the same time. Combine that with a pervasive sense of joy throughout the whole record and what you hear is a band making music that they truly love.
Peter Buck once remarked that he discovered loads of bands while touring the U.S. during the mid ‘80s. Hüsker Dü and The Replacements from Minneapolis, X and The Dream Syndicate from L.A. One can’t help but suspect that Minneapolis’ Howler would’ve been on of Buck’s interstate parochial discoveries had they been around in the early ‘80s instead of early ‘10s, when band discoveries occur at the speed of light across the Internet instead of via word of mouth recommendations from record store clerks.

Howler launched with white-hot shooting star intensity, garnering international accolades, including being named the NME’s third coolest new band in rock, as well as having frontman Jordan Gatesmith make the publication’s annual cool list. They seemed primed for international take over, and were oft compared to The Strokes, actually signing to Rough Trade, after local Minneapolis journalist interviewing Geoff Travis about the 10th anniversary of The Strokes’ debut sent him an early demo of Howler’s first EP. Travis inked the act, and they subsequently released their debut LP “America Give Up.”

These weren’t fatuous, undeserved accolades, and there cord did well, allowing them to tour worldwide. Yet as auspicious as their debut was, their sophomore follow-up “World of Joy“ sounds like an actual band instead of a Gatesmith solo project, the labor of a band who’s honed its chops after extensive grindstone touring. In direct contrast to “America Give Up’s” solitary home recording ethos, Gatesmith strove to more closely approximate an organic, more democratic band bashing out songs in a room. “I think this album’s more of the debut of the band than the first one. It’s much more collaborative, and touring constantly helped, ” says Gatesmith.

“This record has a party atmosphere and we were inspired by bar antics in a weird way. We played music all day and went to the bar at night,” laughs Gatesmith, recounting the making of the record with bassist Max Petrick and guitarist Ian Nygaard. Rory Mac Murdo, a childhood friend of Gatesmith, took over for Brent Mayes on drums in 2013, and the band didn’t even skip a beat.

It’s easy to pick out antecedents in home town legends such as The Replacements, The Cows, Hüsker Dü and even The Hold Steady while listening to “World of Joy” but Gatesmith is keen to extol the virtues of their lesser known contemporaries. “I think there’s a lot of strong musicians from around town who no one’s really heard of yet. We’re really jelling in the scene right now with those bands who are our age,” he says.

? The propulsive, chiming “Don’t Wanna,” with its wistful undertones, is an early band favorite, slyly poking fun at the Minneapolis scene. “It’s sour Minneapolis anthem, written as a joke, ” he laughs “We were hanging out at this club, and someone started meriting the Minneapolis band Semisonic’s ‘Closing Time,’ as a true anthem. So we decided we wanted to write the anti-‘Closing Time,’ an anti-anthem.”

Perhaps the antithesis of “Don’t Wanna” is “Aphorismic Wasteland Blues,” a closing number that sounds like it could’ve stemmed from classic Dylan both lyrically and sonically.

“With ‘Aphorismic,’ we were trying to be a fake blues band, and nothing worked, so we played it on tape machine, and we threw it on the end of the album as an after thought,” says Gatesmith. Rather serendipitously, it’s one of the album’s finest tracks, providing a decidedly idiosyncratic close to an album created by group of highly eccentric individuals, who also happen to be great musicians and songwriters.

After a long conversation about the modern music landscape ensues, Gatesmith reveals an affinity for Low and Talk Talk, but confesses that he doesn’t necessarily emulate them musically. “I love their sonic collages, but need a hook to be there when I’m writing, but not necessarily when I’m listening, although it may happen someday… And a sense of humor. I always hope that comes through. We don’t take ourselves nearly as seriously as people may think we do.”

With a record as infectiously raucous as “World of Joy” he needn’t worry. It’s a gas to listen to, as uplifting, galvanizing, and joyous as all the greatest rock ‘n’ roll strives to be, and by the sounds of Gatesmith’s lengthy expositions on rock music, past, present, and future, he certainly seems like he’s in it for the long haul.

Howler is Jordan Gatesmith (vocals/guitar), Ian Nygaard (guitar), Max Petrek (bass/keyboards) and Rory MacMurdo (drums).
The Static Jacks
The Static Jacks
Since they formed in 2009, Westfield, New Jersey’s The Static Jacks (lead vocalist Ian Devaney, guitarists Henry Kaye and Michael Sue-Poi, and drummer Nick Brennan) have earnestly burned their own path through indie rock’s crowded field. Ignoring music’s fickle trends, the Jacks have forged a unique blend of punk, garage, and soul sounds for a sonic punch to the gut and heart.

“The band certainly brought it’s big-stage game. Think of a young Bono….fronting The Replacements, filtered through something dramatic and British -- maybe Glasvegas or Echo & The Bunnymen -- and you’ll come close to the raw, but polished power of its first single, ‘Into the Sun.’” --Filter

"One of our favourite Breakthrough finds so far.” --NME

"A solidly brash and soulful collection of candid tunes that seem almost perfectly crafted." --Zink
Venue Information:
The Bowery Ballroom
6 Delancey St
New York, NY, 10002