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Category: artist profile (page 1 of 4)

“Thirst”- BBGuns Review

Are you super bummed about being single? Dispirited with the online dating scene? Are you getting tired of the monotony of your day to day? Are you really into Anime and Batman references? Do you enjoy Newbery Medal winners from 1998 that have been made into beloved feature films staring the delightfully unstable Shia Labeouf? BBGuns does.

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No One Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Carrie Battle (Jiant Eagle/Robin Vote)

 

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Source: Dream Phone’s facebook page

 

For today’s inquisition, we spoke to Carrie Battle – resident badass who contributes her ever-evolving styles and talents to a myriad of bands.  Always pushing herself out of her comfort zone, Carrie currently has a super secret project in the works that we here at Punksburgh highly anticipate.  She provided a window into her musical world with her following answers:

Current band(s)

Jiant Eagle, Robin Vote, and a secret new band yet to be named.

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The Gotobeds Do Pittsburgh Punk Proud

“It’s always the easiest and least interesting route to have a preconceived notion of what band you want to sound like and then go do that.”

Eli Kasan’s riffing again. And I’m listening close for clues.

“We were terrible early on ‘cause we wanted to sound like too many things, and weren’t sure which suited us best and let our real personalities shine through. Should a band not be a representation of the individuals that are in it?”

Kasan’s band, The Gotobeds, is a punk rock king in Pittsburgh – except it’s no king here and it’s not what you’d traditionally define as punk rock. Or is it? Yes, yes, the band, which formed about a decade ago – before all this America’s Most Livable City nonsense, from the ashes of Burgh-based hardcore purveyors Kim Phuc – packs its catchy, often freakishly earwig-ish indie-rock songs with lots of raging guitars. But, the bands to whom The Gotobeds draw comparisons are more punk in attitude than traditional construction.

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No One Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Polka Kapolka (Super Fun Time Awesome Party Band)

Today we bring you an Inquisition from the party king himself: Polka of the Super Fun Time Awesome Party Band!

List the names of every band that you’ve ever played in ever.

H.S.D.A.- Hey Soose and the Drunken Apostles
Sikciety
Yinzers
Stupid Pun Time Jawsome Farty Band

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No One Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Josh Verbanets (Meeting of Important People)

photo by ryan white at spirit

Photo by Ryan White

 

Meeting of Important People is quickly beginning to rival the Clarks as the quintessential Pittsburgh-region band.  This rise to prominence is in part a direct result of the talent and incredible songwriting ability of singer/guitarist and frontman Josh Verbantes.  Their catchy rock-n-roll tunes are intertwined with garage and indie-rock influences and have lyrics that make it hard not to sing along.  Some of their songs are about their hometown, such as the single “I Know Every Street.”  Punksburgh caught up with this local-legend-in-the-making to answer the following queries for today’s inquisition.

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Nobody Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Jon Bindley (Bindley Hardware Co.)

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Photo from the band’s Facebook page

Jon Bindley, frontman of the Bindley Hardware Co., has incurred an outstanding reputation as a pioneer and poster child of the niche genre “Rust Belt Americana.”  Built on a unique local history, the band writes nostalgically of the City of Bridges, which adds an air of community for fans that also hail from Pittsburgh.  As friendly as ever, when he’s not performing you can usually find Jon at the Park House listening to the Shelf Life String Band, or in the audience at a Molly Alphabet show.  Punksburgh caught up with him for today’s inquisition:

 

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No one expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Bengt Alexsander (Action Camp)

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Photo by Action Camp

Born into the Boston music scene, Bengt Alexsander brought with him to Pittsburgh a competitive drive and an intrepid ability to take creative risks with his projects.  A member of multiple bands over the years, Alexsander not only performs, but is also an audio engineer who masters albums and runs sound for other bands.  After spending over a decade in Pittsburgh, he gained prominence in the Pittsburgh music scene and partnered with several musical groups – notably the wonderful collective known as the Duquesne Light Orchestra. After covering Action Camp on multiple occasions, Punksburgh had to zone in on this local doom/sludge/surf rock legend for today’s inquisition.

Current Bands

Action Camp


List the names of every band that you’ve ever played in ever.

Zipper, St. Dude, a brief tenure in Urns

What was the artist, album, or song that inspired you to play/write music? 

The Pixies on the visceral side, ABBA on the composition side

Quite the juxtaposition. Photos from Google

What is your favorite piece of merch that you own?

My “ABBA as a black metal band” shirt

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“Dancing Queen” just took on a whole new meaning.  Photo from Google

Tell us one thing about the Pittsburgh music scene that could be better and one thing about the scene that you love. 

To put it in context, I came up in the Boston music scene which is also where I met Maura and started Action Camp. A big advantage of such a large scene is it is highly competitive which breeds really solid hungry bands and promotes a lot of creative risk taking.

I still feel like after almost a decade in Pittsburgh that it could stand to be slightly more competitive to raise the stakes and effort a bit. There are a lot of great bands and musicians in this city, but it can be so friendly and welcoming sometimes that it allows a band to rest on their laurels (myself included) and tread water.

I always push bands that only play locally to tour because it can only make you stronger. In my opinion, playing to your friends and fans every month is one thing, but having to win over potentially hostile strangers is the greatest gift a musician can be given 🙂

What’s something about you/your band that you think people should know that maybe they don’t? 

At the very beginning, we were almost an alt country band. When Maura and I first met we were on a Nico Case and Frank Black & the Catholics kick, but that quickly shifted way more towards heavier sample based compositions. You can hear some reminiscence of it in songs like Seed, Desert Dogs, and Remain (which we recently brought back and rearranged as a slow doom song tuned down to F)

 

If you had to pick only one of your songs for people to listen to, which one would it be? 

War At My Side – it’s a perfect example of our writing style as a trio: stacked vocal lines, heavy dynamic shifts, and semi-hidden odd time
signatures.

Who would you cast in the movie of your band? 

Maura – Ayn Rand
Joe – Jermaine Clemente
Bengt – Toby Maguire

How does your mom/family react to your music? Do they come to your shows? 

My family is very supportive and have long stopped worrying about what my “back up plan” is. My mom hasn’t been to a show in probably 9 years due to her being on the east coast, and it’s also a lot to ask her to come see us play a bar in Boston at 1am on a random Tuesday night we happen to be in town.

What band or artist have you seen live the most number of times? 

Weird Paul Rock Band – we’ve played a bunch of shows together, and I’ve worked, participated, or attended almost every 99 cent Variety Show of his since moving to Pittsburgh.

What’s the craziest thing that has happened to you at a show as a performer or spectator? 

Once we were mid set at a club in Boston in the dead of winter when the main water pipe froze and burst. They immediately killed the power (so we didn’t get electrocuted) and had to stop the show.

Catch Bengt with Action Camp November 17th at Howlers (for Joe Tarowski’s birthday!) with The Dark Lines and BBGUNS. 

Check out some of our past Inquisitions as well!

Brian McGee (The Danzas)
Jonathan Bagamery (Murder For Girls)
Jesse Ley (Delicious Pastries / City Steps / Mantiques)
Adam Sniff (the Scratch ‘n’ Sniffs)
Pat McGhen (Playoff Beard / the Shutouts)

No One Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Tim Emanuel (The Danzas)

We caught up with Tim Emanuel, guitar player for The Danzas, and put him through the Punksburgh inquisition. Read all about this long-time Pittsburgh musician, and make sure to put your bowling shoes on and rock out to him tomorrow, November 15th

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Tim (left) playing with The Danzas

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No One Expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Jonathan Bagamery (Murder For Girls)

This inquisition features bassist Jonathan Bagamery of Murder for Girls.

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Jonathan is the dude.

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No one expects the Punksburgh Inquisition: Jesse Ley (Delicious Pastries / City Steps / Mantiques)

Between being a member of a triad of bands and co-DJing the killer dance phenomenon known as “Strangeways,” chances are you’ve encountered today’s inquisition feature:  Jesse Ley.  Talented and charming, Jesse will rock a set on the drumkit and then have friendly chats with admiring audience members.  Staying busy with his myriad of projects, he’s pulling double duty this Friday at the Delicious Pastries‘ double a-sided single release show, where he’ll play percussion with the Pastries and then DJ for the “Strangeways” afterparty.  We at Punksburgh caught up with him to inquire about the following:

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