Monday, January 29, 7pm doors/8pm show, $13 advance/$15 day of show
Acclaimed NYC indie pop duo
From Glasgow, Scotland
Diet Cig are here to have fun. They’re here to tear you away from the soul-sucking sanctity of your dumpster-fire life and replace it with pop-blessed punk jams about navigating the impending doom of adulthood when all you want is to have ice-cream on your birthday.
Alex Luciano (guitar and vocals) and Noah Bowman (drums) have been playing music together ever since Luciano interrupted the set of Bowman’s previous band for a lighter. The New York duo have since released the infectious, 2015 Over Easy EP that introduced consistent sing-a-long lyrics with thrashing drums and strums that never held back.
Swear I’m Good At This is the first full-length from the band and accumulates their tenacity for crafting life-affirming, relatable tales with a gutsy heart at their core. Luciano has the ability to write lyrics that are both vulnerable and badass, perfecting a storm of emotive reflection that creates a vision of a sweaty, pumped-up room screaming these lines in unison. Diet Cig make it okay to be the hot mess that you are.
But there’s also a deeper, more powerful fuck-you among the bangers that see Diet Cig grow into an unstoppable and inspiring force. “I’m not being dramatic, I’ve just fucking had it with the things that you say you think that I should be” spits Luciano on ‘Link in Bio’; “I am bigger than the outside shell of my body and if you touch it without asking then you’ll be sorry” she yells on ‘Maid Of The Mist’. It’s the sound of a band doing things on their own terms.
Wrapping up Swear I’m Good At This on Halloween 2016, exactly two years after they finished recording Over Easy on Halloween 2014, Diet Cig’s first, full-length LP validates the experiences of punks who aren’t always accepted first time around; the punks who throw their deuces up at the dominating bro-dudes and ignite the importance of owning everything that you are.
“In just under a half hour, the band displays a musical confidence rare for a joyfully ragged garage-pop debut.” – The A.V. Club
“Packed with wit, super-sharp song-writing, and charged with Diet Cig’s now-distinctive personality, Swear I’m Good At This should probably be called ‘Swear I’m Fucking Ace At This’ instead for higher accuracy levels.” – DIY Magazine
“The New York boy/girl duo specialize in lovesick fuzz-pop on their fantastic debut album Swear I’m Good At This.” – Rolling Stone
“It’s clever, funny, confrontational and touching.” – Mojo
“Regardless of what anyone wanted or expected from them though, this brilliant debut sees Diet Cig establishing a complex, nuanced voice with a subtle uniqueness, a fierce emotionality and a great sense of fun.” – Drowned In Sound
Here’s some video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=WH4xyxlHtTQ
If a debut LP is an artist’s introduction to the world and their sophomore release is their now-or-never moment, their third is their most cathartic. Glasgow, Scotland’s indie pop optimists The Spook School, despite personal and political obstacle, made it out, and their latest full-length Could It Be Different? is here. It’s been a journey of self-discovery and feel-good realism; modern, dance-friendly indie pop fueling the fun. They made a name for themselves for their exultant and empowering pop, and now, they’ve shown real growth in nuance. The album is set for release on January 26.
The Spook School are Nye Todd (guitar/vocals), Anna Cory (bass/vocals), Adam Todd (guitar/vocals) and Niall McCamley (drums). Since forming in 2012, they’ve released two records to critical acclaim: 2013’s Dress Up, a gender-binary eradicating release—noisy, cheery pop critical of social construction and its limitations, and 2015’s Try to Be Hopeful, a celebration of queer and trans identities from a place of newfound self-assurance.
Could It Be Different? Is, well, different—it’s a collaborative album of personal storytelling that works through life’s hardships with positivity—even at their most beaten down, The Spook School manage to find hope free of naivety. That’s clear the second the album opens with “Still Alive,” and its ascending chorus (and soon-to- be crowd favorite) of “Fuck You, I’m Still Alive,” written by Nye after surviving an emotionally abusive relationship. The song avoids villainizing the past, instead, it celebrates the present and welcomes the unknown future.
Could It Be Different? is a human release—a record full of the insecurities and anxiety that arrive after self-awareness, in learning something new and potentially frightening about yourself. But at it’s heart is joy—there’s no desolation on the LP, because The Spook School manage to find light in moments of darkness. All things glum must pass—even if hope comes only in the form of acceptance.
“We try to take sad songs and not shy away from them, but come out thinking ‘things will change.’ Otherwise everything would be dreadful and I feel bad enough as it is,” Niall laughs. “We need a bit of light in our lives.” Adam agrees, “We started this for fun. We want our shows to be fun. We want the people who come to our shows to feel welcomed, and to have fun. There’s a bit of party in our songs, no matter what the subject matter is.” Why cry when you can dance?
“By making an album that succeeds as a meaningful statement and a brilliant pop record at the same time, the Spook School have done the near impossible on Try to Be Hopeful.” – AllMusic
“The positivity is never over the top, nor does the pure sincerity exhibited throughout ever feel excessively earnest. It’s this which sets this band apart from their indie-pop contemporaries, and makes Try To Be Hopeful a record which should be revered as a truly important piece of work.” – Drowned In Sound
“You might think punk bands berating the patriarchy is uninspired, but The Spook School do so with spirit, vibrancy and clever honesty, demonstrating how candid discussions of gender and sexuality in pop culture is still worryingly subversive.” – Clash Music
Here are some tracks from the new album: www.youtube.com/watch?v=yAtmGfIh5rc
And the last one: www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxnGUUgNlhc
Event page: www.facebook.com/events/524622254596900