We had a short ride from DC to Harrisonburg, VA. We got to take a nice long walk down the main street there. Harrisonburg is a fine example of small college town that shows a renewed vigor for its downtown area. We shared the bill with our old pals Uncle Bengine and stayed with pedal steel player Jason who just happened to be dog sitting for this little fella, Luka. The venue, The Blue Nile, was also a really good Ethiopian restaurant as well. Lucky us! Along with Uncle Bengine, New Orleans math rock duo Caddywhompus rocked us out.
The next show was in Charleston, WV. I had a chance to catch up with my old high school friend Stefani Andrews. An great artist in her own right Stefani helped put together a gig to accompany an awesome gallery showing of some great Charleston Underground artists friends of hers. The Gallery was called Studio 1031 and it seemed to be right in the middle of downtown Charleston. There was some pretty amazing stuff there, not the least of which was this piece entitled “Vaginalier,” which consisted of a working chandelier made out of multiple-sized speculums. You can’t see it from the picture but there were actually images of various women superimposed onto the wings of the speculums. Pretty fucking cool!
I ended up crashing on the couch in the studio that night. The light was was doing some interesting stuff in the morning so I took this eerie photo when I woke up.
The next day it was off the the land of Guided By Voices and Kim Deal: Dayton, OH. It was our first time in Dayton, though we’ve been building a great fondness for the state of Ohio ever since we started touring the states. Nan and I recently discovered the Cincinnati band Wussy. We are both big fans, something that happens less often than one might think. Our host and songwriting force behind Normal Torso, Aron, gave us a quick tour of Dayton including a bar where Robert Pollard is banned for life and the cemetery where the Wright Brothers were buried. The house where we played was super cool and all the other acts: Half A Ghost, Ali King, and Normal Torso really brought it. Aron’s roommate turned out to be a really cool artist named Ben Riddlebarger. This is a pic from the basement show in Dayton which I’m glad this sweet guy named David took because I remember thinking the back wall looked really interesting.
One of the cool things about the St. Louis show was discovering a new band – Frances with Wolves. They were dreamy experimental noise, with bursts of pop melodies that bubbled up intermittently. What was also great about being back in STL was catching up with our friends in Sleepy Kitty – Paige and Evan. Evan is now writing (and is the Music Editor) for Eleven Magazine. He wrote a little blurb about us and some of the other cool stuff going on in KC these days!
We finished our Back To School Tour in the best possible way with a house show for our new KC friend and artist Rachel Sky. It just so happens that Rachel’s house is close enough to Sandstone Amphitheater that we could hear the Hall & Oates concert going on while we set up. Below is a party shot in our typical formation by Michelle of Deco Auto/Drew Black and the Dirty Electric.
————- Barry Bliss asked Me (Major Matt) a handful questions about being a musician and our recent move to Kansas. Here’s a link of that exchange: http://www.olivejuicemusic.com/blog/2012/09/10/2012-interview-major-matt-mason-usa
Our hometown release show for the new album: Courage. It’s going to be at the Riot Room in KC on Friday, September 28th. Opening acts will include: The Conquerers, The Lucky and Folkicide. Save a couple of bucks and get your advance tickets here: http://www.theriotroom.com/event/157199/
A song off the new album was featured on this weeks KC local podcast The Mailbox hosted by KC local music mavens Michael Byars & Chris Haghairian: http://blog.midwestmusicfound.org/2012/09/10/the-mailbox-vol-66/
————- We are also happy to announce we will be returning to Europe in October and November in support of our new record COURAGE (olive juice music, loud baby sounds). Please see below for confirmed dates. If you can’t make it out, or you don’t presently reside in Europe, please feel free to share this event listing with any friends you think might be interested in attending one of the shows! We sure would appreciate it! XO, Nan & Matt
SCHWERVON! FALL 2012 EUROPEAN TOUR
4 Berlin (Schokoladen)
5 Dresden (Ostpol)
6 Krakow (Rozrywki 3)
7 Vienna (Rhiz)
8 Munich (Südstadt)
10 Nurnberg (k4 – w/ The Wedding Present!)
11 Mannheim (The Blau)
12 Regensburg (W1 – w/ Jenny Lund)
13 Gunzenhausen (Cayman Bar – w/ Jenny Lund)
14 Tobel (Komturei Tobel)
15 Zurich (Bosch Bar)
16 Wetzlar (Franzis)
17 Darmstadt (Oetinger villa)
18 Koln (Haengendegaerten)
19 Bremen (Spedition)
20 Oldenburg (Wagenburg)
21 Hannover – (TBA)
22 Hamburg (Astra Stube)
23 Offenbach (Hafen 2)
24 Nantes (Le Stakhanov)
25 Paris (Pop in – w/ The Pirouettes)
26 London (Stag’s Head – w/ David Cronenberg’s Wife, Bilkis + spinmaster plantpot)
28 Cardiff (The Moon Club)
29 Bristol (Cafe Kino)
30 Nottingham (The Chameleon)
31 Wakefield (The Hop)
1 Manchester (The Castle)
2 Halifax (Arden Rd Social Club)
3 Glasgow (Glasgow College of Art)
4 Aberdeen (Brew Dog) FB Event Link
You ever have one of those weeks that felt like a year? I think we just had one. After a steamy Pittsburgh show we headed back to NYC for a couple of nights that pretty much ran the full gamut of emotions for us.
The first NY show was at The Bell House opening for The Vaselines. Frances sang her backing vocal on Truth Teller for the first time ever, live, and we got to meet Michael Azerrad who wrote one of my favorite band bio books of all time: This Band Could Be Your Life. The night was pretty magical. Check out some pics from the show here: http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archives/2012/0/the_vaselines_a_1.html
The next night we cut loose at the BTP in Bushwick. It was really fun to share a bill again with our NYC scene buddies Phoebe Kreutz +Kung Fu Crimewave. Also nice to see Dan Penta’s new duo project with Brian Speaker. It was heartwarming to see some old familiar faces and a few new ones as well. Thanks to everyone who represented and a special thanks to Sammy at Scapegrace for the crash pad and The Purple Organ for hosting the lovely Labor Day Weekend gathering. It was hard for Nan and I to leave our ny friends this time around…but really great to have such good catch up time with them.
With our friend batteries thoroughly charged, our next stop was the Paradise Lost House in New Brunswick, NJ. Greg from the band A Fucking Elephant was nice enough to hook us up with this cool basement venue. It was a pretty early show due to noise ordinances. The first band, Bodega Satellite super rocked it in a very Sebadohish way. Following that were the Timid Roosevelts who kind of reminded me of a bit of throw back to the late 80’s, 4AD dream pop, a la Cocteau Twins with some nice DIY temperament. They had fun T-shirts too. And closing up the night were some nice tight fresh sounds from locals Zero For Conduct (enjoyed their CD very much in the car today). All the elements a great house show should have, minus the puke in the bathtub! Next stop was DC where we got our asses thoroughly washed by some of the heaviest rain I’d seen in a long time. This put a slight damper (ouch) on the show, so to speak. But our soggy spirits prevailed with a nice triple bill that included locals Southern Problems and Brooklyn dream pop trio Shy Hunters. We had a day off in DC for Labor day so we thought we’d drop by B&M’s place for brunch. They didn’t have to bring out the police escort for us. And just because no Schwervon! blog post would feel complete without a cute picture of a cat…here’s a shot of Pants. He belongs to our friend, Sarah, who was nice enough to let us crash at her place for 2 days in DC. She left early for her med school class today, and we discovered that our shoes were missing. Due to the heavy rains a couple nights ago, we left them outside her apartment in the hallway. They were Nan’s favorite boots and my new “show shoes”. We left a note asking for whoever took them to return them and were feeling pretty crappy about the whole thing when we got a knock on the door and a very nice maintenance man said “These are your shoes? Don’t leave them in the hall… I thought they were trash!” Ok then, thank you guardian shoe angels. Now we can go tear it up in Harrisonburg, VA!!! WE’RE IN THE HOME STRETCH FOLKS! COME ON OUT & GET SCHOOLED http://www.facebook.com/events/287632501351341/
THIS JUST IN> WE’VE JUST CONFIRMED OUR ALBUM RELEASE SHOW AT: THE RIOT ROOM FOR FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28TH
CONFIRMED ACTS FOR THE EVENING INCLUDE: FOLKICIDE + THE LUCKY + THE CONQUERORS
COME ON DOWN AND HELP US CELEBRATE THE RELEASE OF OUR NEW ALBUM: COURAGE . IT”S GONNA BE A REAL GOOD TIME!
————- SCHWERVON! Back To School Mini Tour Dates with a summit that peaks in Brooklyn, NY opening for The Vaselines. This will be the first tour we’ll have CD copies available of our new album: COURAGE (recorded by Doug Easley in Memphis). Aug. 26 – Indianapolis, IN @ Birdy’s (w/ Sonic Dioxide + Mr. Clit & the Pink Cigarettes) Aug. 27 – Canton, OH @ Buzzbin Art & Music Shop (w/ Dolly Rocker Ragdoll) August 30 – Brooklyn, NY @ The Bell House (w/ The Vaselines!) August 31 @ TBA (email: schwervon at gmail.com for details) Sept. 01 – New Brunswick, NY @ Paradise Lost New Brunswick, NJ (w/ The Timid Roosevelts) email schwervon at gmail.com for details Sept. 02 – Washington, D.C @ The Dunes (w/ Southern Problems) Sept. 04 – Harrisonburg, VA @ Blue Nile (w/ Uncle Bengine) Sept. 05 – Charleston, WV @ Studio 1031 Sept. 06 – Dayton OH @ Casa de King Sept. 07 – St. Louis, MO @ Heavy Anchor (w/ Frances with Wolves) HEY! Got a Facebook friend in or near one of these towns?
Let ’em know by sharing this link: http://www.facebook.com/events/287632501351341/
If we had to pick a week where we officially became Kansas City-ans, this last one would have been very much in the running. The Major Matt Mason USA and Nan and the One Night Stands double bill at Weirdo Wednesday was one of the more enjoyable hump days in recent memory. And last Saturday’s Schwervon! show at Davey’s Uptown with The Electric Lungs and Drew Black and Dirty Electric totally knocked it out of the park for us! Here’s little video from the show taken by our favorite local Vinyl Merchant: Sherman Brenaman!Gracias KC for a great week! An extra special big “Merci Boucoup!” to all the dancers. Hope to see you all again on Friday, September 28th at the Riot Room! ————-
At Weirdo Wednesday a guy, who never told me his name, handed us a piece of paper with this sketch of Nan and I performing solo on either side. Pretty cool! I liked it so much I scanned it. Thanks guy who’s name we don’t know.
– Major Matt Mason USA
– Nan Turner