Saturday, July 27, 2013
Bangtails Hypnotic Downpour Revolver 1987
A trusted friend turned me onto this when I asked him for the skinny on some solid 80s local stuff that I wouldn't know about. He, being a one time employee at Love Garden Sounds in Lawrence, KS and a late 80s early 90s local musician himself, pointed me towards this.
He also put me under the impression, this was a self released EP by a group from Wichita, KS. The self released part is pretty obvious. The Wichita part, I haven't been able to confirm, but more on that later.
This is solid jangle pop. The obvious comparison is REM Chronic Town era. It certainly has that jangle and energy, but it's a bit more on the power pop/new wave edge. I took it in a few times and the songs feel as if they could have been in a John Hughes film soundtrack. There's something really familiar about the tunes and not just in the REM jangle-sense. It's got a slight English tint to it, no synths, but in the atmosphere of the songs.
The killer part about the EP is the strained vocals of Mike Winston. He goes into this gargling, pubescent, teen thing. Fuck, it just kills me. I mean, what more could you ask for with songs about (or sound like they are about) girls. It literally sounds like Mike Winston's world is crumbling down upon him as the songs continue. It's a shame this was the only released output by these guys, because it's a very promising set of songs.
The big news here is that this band is well footnoted as a stepping stone in the career of Archer Prewitt who was the bass player for the Bangtails. So, my initial understanding that the band was from Wichita is a bit up in the air. Prewitt, born and raised in Kentucky, attended the Kansas City Art Institute where this band must have formed. Prewitt, of course, would go on to help form the Coctails in Kansas City before relocating to Chicago. In Chicago, Prewitt would connect with another Kansas City Art Institute alum and Chicago legend, Sam Prekop, as a member of the Sea & Cake. So there you go, you're welcome Chicago, you should probably thank us sometime for your kick-ass indie rock scene.
Bangtails - Patron of the Arts