Cursive + Cymbals Eat Guitars + Conduits / Mr. Small’s / 03.18.2012 / Doors 7:00 / $16
Words by Brendan
There must be something in the water in Omaha. There have been so many great bands from that Nebraska city, and there are plenty more on the up-and-up. Case in point: shoegaze gloom-pop band Conduits. They’re putting out their first LP this month and heading on a cross-country tour with two great rock bands—Cursive (fellow Omahans!) and Cymbals Eat Guitars—and they’re all swinging by Mr. Small’s in a couple of weeks. Awesome rockness will abound on this night and we have TWO FREE TICKETS to give away! So read on for more about the bands and how to enter. Double quick!
The Conduits story starts, as I said, in Omaha, NE. JJ Idt and Nate Mickish record some demos together, on the side of their other rock projects (including Eagle*Seagull and The Golden Age), creating soundscapes and ambient psychedelic drones. Instrumentals. Missing a voice … Jenna Morrison—who had sang and written for indie rockers Son Ambulance—added some vocals on those demos and voilà! Conduits was born, later adding Roger Lewis on drums, Mike Overfield on bass, and Patrick Newbery on keys. They’ve played a bunch of shows since that genesis a couple of years ago, released an apparently super-limited-edition split 7″ with the song “Misery Train”, and are now releasing their first proper album, which you can pre-order here.
The single, “Top Of The Hill”, does a good job of displaying their sound and commitment to it. For a debut, this band already knows exactly what they want to sound like, and with six members, they have plenty to work with to create that sound. Overall, I get the sense that they enjoy playing with mood, letting the guitar reverb swell and then abruptly drop to a ripple while Morrison’s voice rises and falls in volume and intensity to match. All the while, though, she sounds a little restrained, forceful but breathy, somehow, and it’s incredibly enticing. Lewis’ drumming is perfect, too, keeping a solid beat with a little bit of variation to grab your ears, and the cymbals even manage to fill in the atmospheric melodies a little bit, which is cool. All in all, it’s a unique mix of pscyhedelic guitar haze, moody keyboard-scapes, and intense vocals. Check them out playing another tune, the equally gloomy but catchy “Limbs and Leaves”, in an Omaha art space:
Conduits / “Limbs and Leaves” / dir. Love Drunk Studios
The other two bands playing at this show are more well-known, so I’ll pay them some lip-service here, but I really want to emphasize that Mr. Small’s should be an excellent place for Conduits to play, and you shouldn’t miss them. Cymbals Eat Guitars draw their name from a Lou Reed quote but pay it no mind, letting their polished guitar noise play as much a role in their sprawling and creative rock tunes as the cymbals do. Lead guitarist Joseph D’Agostino’s vocals are awesomely yelpy and melodic in a Modest Mouse meets Conor Oberst kind of way. Meanwhile, Cursive‘s blend of guitar-heavy punk, folk, and shoegaze indie rock has carried them through seven albums and they show no signs of stopping the good stuff. Not to mention, Tim Kasher’s stage persona is wild, as I described here.
Oh yeah, we were here about some tickets, right? Here are the details: leave a note on our Facebook wall (like us first or it won’t count!), @ us on Twitter (with the hashtag #ConduitsPGH, and follow us first!), or send me an email to enter the contest! Just say “I would drive far to see Conduits” or “Cymbals Eat Guitars eat my ears” or “Tim Kasher is kash money” or the like. It really doesn’t matter. We’ll pick a winner (at random) next Wednesday, so get your entries in! The lucky person’s name will be on the guest list at the door with a +1. Best of luck and see yinz there!