Bands on the run
A look at what last year’s watch-worthy acts are up to
It’s hard to believe that a year has passed already. Last October we chose six bands that we thought were worth keeping an eye on. Here’s a look at what they’ve done over the course of the past 12 months.
Local metal badasses The Makai continue to stomp everything in their path, having played some 40 shows over the course of two tours of the States in 2006, including opening for The Dillinger Escape Plan in Dallas. After releasing a couple of EPs, The Makai are working on putting the finishing touches on their first full-length at guitarist Zeke Rogers’ Black Lodge studio in Chico while still filling venues around town. Look for the new record some time in early December.
Chico favorites The Americas are still dropping jaws around town with their schizoid sound. It’s difficult to believe sometimes that there are only two of them. One show of note was when the band opened for The iMPS at Duffy’s Tavern in early June—guitarist Travis Wuerthner, armed with a new loop pedal, and maniacal drummer Casey Dietz absolutely blew the doors off the place. The band has been on hiatus for the past few months with Dietz on tour with The Velvet Teen, but look for the noise to return to Chico when he gets back.
The Hooliganz: One of the few hip-hop groups in Chico, The Hooliganz were busy in 2006, opening several shows for Chico export Marty James’ One Block Radius, including two sellouts at LaSalles. J. Pigg also released a solo record, and his single “Got Me Rhymin'” received play on local radio stations. The trio plans to release a six-song sample EP in early 2007 with shows to follow.
La Fin du Monde:
This “five-piece instrumental collective” released a three-song EP in February and, with that, played a number of shows with a diverse group of local bands. La Fin du Monde, which has the unique distinction of having two bassists, was also a featured band with Glas Apparel, an up-and-coming clothing line out of Santa Barbara. Look for more instrumental noodling at the band’s upcoming show at the Women’s Club Nov. 9.
The young road warrior had a big year in 2006, traveling the United States with troubadour Drew Danburry in support of her second album, Forgive/Forget, released in June. She still plays plenty around Chico, but you might want to check out the songbird soon before she takes flight to something bigger.
Just when the band seemed to be perfecting its loud, poppy piano-driven rock, Cair Paravel called it a day in July. Vocalist Jon Wesley has since emerged as a bare-bones singer-songwriter in the vein of Bob Dylan, playing shows with bands like Portland’s Eux Autres and metal monster The Abominable Iron Sloth. The rest of the band will no doubt turn up in other projects, and Wesley will embark on a month-long tour beginning Nov. 3.