We have a new video out today! It was done by our favorite video maker Michael Bonocore at Bonocore Visual Studios and features our terrible skating and dance moves!
We have new single from the new record out.
It’s a real purdy song.
Thanks to Nicki Bluhm for making our band sound so dang good!
We’re putting out a new record, and we want you to help us celebrate.
We’ll be at the Fillmore on June 1st.
Ladies and Gentlemen –
We are proud to release a brand new EP today.
It’s part of an EP trilogy that we’ve got worked up for you.
It follows the saga of a young orphan on a desert planet who will grow to be a powerful Jedi, and save the galaxy…
No – I kid. It is a trilogy that follows the epic journey of a band of heroes on a quest to destroy a very wicked and powerful ring in a volcano…
Sorry, sorry. Trilogies are just so damn awesome. OUR trilogy is not like those other trilogies. Ours is a series of vinyl 7″ records, and it will chronicle the lives of 5 plucky adventurers with their Gandalf-like producer, John Vanderslice, as they work to – through the magic of analog tape – transfer their hearts and minds into sonic waves for you and your ears to enjoy.
Part 1 is out now and we’re calling it Ink, and we hope you enjoy. You can buy it here.
(You can check out our most recent single from this EP, Get Me Home, here. It has the world’s greatest Folk Brawl well documented – also a guest spot by Ben and Alex’s dad, Brad. He kind of steals the show.)
Hail hail, folks.
We are very excited to release this Punk EP to the world.
Starting last year, The Brothers Comatose made an EP for Halloween release. The idea is that we dress 4 of our songs up in a different genre. Last year it was Metal. This year, a bit less heavy, but no less dear to my heart, we did Punk (more pop punk really, but it really depends on how you’re defining these things, and genre splicing and delineation has never been my strong suit).
The first year it was easy to convince everyone in our string band to make a Metal EP because we had been running a Kickstarter campaign, and I – quite literally – had to make 4 of our songs into Metal Songs. They didn’t have to be full on, out-and-out attempts to be an actual metal band… but because I – quite literally – want to be in an out-and-out metal band, they were.
And so, through one year of necessity and pure love of metal, a tradition was born.
It’s not a tradition if you only do it once. So this summer I started my pitch for Halloween Covers EP episode 2: The Pop Punk EP. This is a natural because it was proven by punk scientists Me First and the Gimme Gimmes that any song with a melody and chord progression becomes better if you make it punk.
The band is, generally, enthusiastic about fun and ridiculous ideas, so this was a shoe-in. The real rub was in getting a budget from the powers-that-be to hire a drummer and book a day in the studio. Once this (miraculous) feat was accomplished, the sky was the limit. I came up with 4 songs and worked up demos – songs that I thought we could re-arrange well for the genre at hand. Then I hired James Allen – drummer for rad local band One Armed Joey – to track some real drums. (Last year’s EP had MIDI drums. A regret I’ll carry with me forever…) We went to White Whale Studios in Santa Rosa where James smashed on drums while I played super loud electric bass – my music room/home studio is right under the girls’ bedroom. No drums and super loud electric bass allowed here.
Drums and bass were tracked – hanging like full, lush, ripe musical fruit to blend into a punk-rock smoothie and then … we ended up on a 3 week tour. Campfire Caravan Part 1.
No problem. I love smoothies and will not be thwarted from a good smoothie, even if it is only metaphorical. I brought my portable studio with me – laptop and interface – and Ryan had his trusty LesPaul on the road. So the guitars got tracked in various backstages across the Northwest. I mixed and mixed in the van, and had things mostly ready for Ben and Alex to track lead vocals in our brief time at home between tours.
Ryan sent me guitar solos that he did in his home studio (superb, as I’m sure you’ll agree), Ben and Alex came in and shredded some vocal tracks (Alex’s Joey Ramone vibe is off the charts, and Ben’s evil talk-vocals on Tops of the Trees was difficult to track because we were both laughing so hard), I threw down tons of background vox, and other tidily little bits where I thought they would be cool, and – the piece de resistance – Jenny (my amazing and stunningly talented wife) stepped in and crushed the lady vocal parts on Morning Time.
Finish it up, tie it with a bow, and send it off to the amazing Jeffrey Norman at Mockingbird Mastering to make it huge and shiny… and we have our EP. Still warm from the oven, and ready for you to enjoy.
I’m really happy with how it all came out. I’d never mixed live drums before, so that was a pretty substantial learning curve. The process of mixing and then mastering is still somewhat shrouded in mystery to me, and so this project – just like last year’s – was nutty in a great way. Like being thrown into the deep end of the pool… but the pool isn’t really too deep, and it’s filled with delicious Mango LeCroix, so even if you did sink, you could still drink your way out… I guess, what I mean is, challenging, but without life-and-death consequences.
Hope you enjoy, Happy Halloween, and I can’t wait for next year.
Our hometown is burning!!!
It is insane and crazy. This is Gio writing here My parents were evacuated two days ago. The photo above is the hills behind their house. Firefighters (thanks all you amazing firefighters!!) have been kicking ass and working hard to keep things as safe and hopeful as possible.
My family is fine – as is the town of Petaluma. That includes the Pacini ancestral home, the Morrison ancestral home (Rancho Relaxo) and Jen and I’s house.
We were running around (before I flew out to meet up with tour) trying to organize kid music/songs/stories at the evacuation shelters, and Jen is still back there working her ass off to keep things going, to keep the kids learning, engaged, hopeful, and creative in this crazy time.
Being out here on tour can feel excruciatingly pointless during this fire… I keep trying to dig down and pull a meaning out of using time and energy here instead of back home with family, and it is real hard. But the family at home is hanging tough, we are off for 2 weeks starting Sunday, and I’ll (hopefully, if flights are clear and skies aren’t too smokey) be back on the scene, pen, paper and guitar in hand, partying with displaced kids and families.
In the meantime, I’m out here, and I worked on some tunes in the van to try and do something proactive and productive for my amazing people back home. Here’s a link to those tunes if you want to check it out.
Please, if you can, find a way to help out Sonoma County. There are so many people that could use your help.
Take care out there.
We rode horses!
And we knew you wouldn’t believe us, so we documented it in gorgeous, spectacular high-def, cinematic style. Thanks to Colin Blackshear for the camera and editing. Thanks to Ismay for the horses and expertise, and thanks to Lagunitas for giving us a way to dull the pain of our knees and asses.
Enjoy the new tune, and then come out to our 3-band-super-party-tour and sing along with us in your town.
We are here, caravanning and campfireing.
I’m in Billings, Montana at a killer coffee shop (massive high-fives to MoAV coffee) which is – blessedly, mercifully, thankfully, right around the corner from the venue. I’m listening to my Spotify Discover Weekly playlist which I’ve been working with great effort and focus to hone and curate into the cornucopia of heavy, sludgy, doomy, death-y, metal-y offerings it now is.
It’s enough to make one ponder on the ways of the music industry today. Here I am, in a band, trying to stretch together meager ends that won’t quite meet, wishing there was a way for music to generate more income, and here I am streaming tunes from bands. Paying pennies on the dollar for the kickass music they’ve made that I enjoy. And Spotify gets my monthly subscription fee. Hmm. Does it even out because I then go to the shows of said bands? Putting the money more directly in their hands with my concert patronage? I say no. It means that the bands have to – somehow – continually create new music for me to consume the moment it comes out, and simultaneously eternally tour so as to pay their bills. There’s not enough time in a year, and there’s not enough blood in a body to make that work.
What does that have to do with the Campfire Caravan tour?
I don’t know – I’m high on caffeine and typing to an invisible audience.
Pretty stoked for this tour, folks. We rehearsed last night and it was just so damn fun to hang out with the folks in Mipso and Lil’ Smokies. I don’t care about the shows so much – just being around these kickass people and players is going to be a beautiful thing.
Hope you can make it out. I think we’re touring far enough, wide enough, and long enough to eliminate most excuses. If you want to be a special Super Friend, come to the show and leave me a:
fantasy/sci-fi book recommendation
coffee shop recommendation
metal/hardcore/punk band recommendation
We have a lot of van time to fill, and I’m always hungry and thirsty for all the above.
See you soon.
We’re on tour – currently in Williamstown getting ready to head to the Fresh Grass festival and melt faces and decimate audiences with our shredding, cutting and crushing riffs and furious blast beats… wait. Shit. Sorry. I’m listening to a lot of metal of late. Current playlist on Spotify is the “New Metal Tracks” playlist. It is excellent, and there are plenty of gems to be found.
But let’s be real. We’re a string band. We will will have a jolly good time, get people smiling and dancing, encourage a bit of tomfoolery and beer-drinking, and hang out with our string-band buddies. Not so much crushing or melting or decimating. And that’s OK. It’s fine. I have no problems with that.
This tour has been pretty nutty – and I just wanted to share a bit of what we’ve been up to.
We flew into Nashville (which – by itself – already sounds pretty damn impressive. We flew into NASHVILLE. That’s where music things HAPPEN! And we flew. It conjures up images of Otis Redding touching down in the UK – or Zeppelin stepping off of their private jet to throngs of press and fans on the tarmac. I like that conjured image, so I will do my best not to dispel it. Try not to imagine 5 sleepy dudes in t-shirts and flip-flops on the airport pick-up curb trying to find a Red Roof Inn shuttle by a three person triangulation of smart-phone skills.)
Nashville was in the beginning throws of its American Fest. Super fun. The venue we played was so full of good music it was near ridiculous. Three stages, 8 bands, all of them amazing. We had to bail out super early because these Minivan Jetsetters had to catch an early flight to New York.
Yeah. You heard me. We flew to New York city, and we had some magazine interviews, did some videos, played some music in the subway. We Jet Setted HARD. ( Imagine flashing lights, photographers scrabbling for their chance at a shot; skyscrapers reflected in our stylish sunglasses; the seas of taxi cabs parting as we, instruments in hand, strode boldly across 7th avenue. Do your very best not to imagine hungover, sleepy and unshaven derelicts who – somehow – found guitars, banjos, etc, and – like a circus-clown-act – packed the 5 of themselves and a small mountain of gear and bags into a black Chrysler Pacifica Minivan.)
More importantly, we ate slices of pizza and drank espresso.
We rolled out that night to get a drop on the drive to Fresh Grass up here in Massachusetts.
And here we are. The trees are just starting to turn their autumn colors – it’s a beautiful and bucolic preview of a part of the country we see too seldom.
This is a harrowing tale of friends turning their backs on a hero. A saga of water-logged bravery and perseverance vs cold, callous, debaucherous tomfoolery. I think you’ll all shed a tear. Hold on to your dear ones.
And always wear a life vest.
Huge thanks to Michael Bonocore for the awesome camera work!