Connecticut, DIY, Elison Jackson, Feeding Hills, goldfish, Halloween party, Hanging Hills, Hilla Villa, house show, live art, Mansfield, painting, Pocket Vinyl, the Oarsman, the Underground Cafe, whale
Pretty immediately after getting back home from Korea/Vancouver, we jumped into doing Pocket Vinyl shows. We have a new and very exciting album coming out very soon (join us for what will surely be a spectacular Halloween album release party in New London in just over a week on October 26!) and we needed to get out and start promoting it.
Our first stop was on September 27 at the Underground Cafe in Feeding Hills, MA. We’d played here 3 or 4 times previously. However, this time we were a little nervous about the reception we’d receive and double checked with the booker that it’d really be ok that we played. The Underground Cafe is in the basement of a church and is connected with the church business-wise. Our new album, Death Anxiety (out in about a week! Come to the Halloween party!), focuses a lot throughout the songs on death, the afterlife, God, and doubt. Over the past few years both Eric & I have spent a lot of time personally and in long conversations with many of the people we meet on tour reevaluating all of the spiritual beliefs we were both raised with. It’s been tough and exhausting, but also freeing to learn to listen with nonjudgmental ears to all kinds of belief systems. Death Anxiety is essentially an artistic extension of the spiritual conversations we’ve been debating. A lot of it is just working through questions. Well, because of this we realize we need to tread a tad bit lighter around some of the Christian venues we sometimes play at. And this isn’t exactly paranoia on our part; we have had a venue ask us not to come back because of this exact issue.
But! The Underground Cafe did want us back, and we had a lovely time!
Our good friend Kate came out to see us, and ended up battling an Underground employee for the painting (but lost in the end. Well, she has three paintings already, so I can’t say I felt too bad for her!). It was a fun night overall. And the painting went on to inspire our new Pocket Vinyl sticker! (Which are FREE at our shows, by the way! AND we will start giving them away at our Halloween album release party!! Have I convinced you to come yet?)
Our next Pocket Vinyl show was the very next night (September 28) at a house show (Hilla Villa) in Mansfield, CT. Not terribly far from where we live. We played alongside Hanging Hills (they were all the guys who lived in the house and were super nice. Plus, I really loved their set a lot. Just real quality people), the Oarsman (on tour from Chicago and, fun fact: we actually played with one of the guys back in 2011 and he remembered us. Small world), and Elison Jackson (who will actually be playing the Halloween album release party with us!).
Mmm, remember how I said that the Hanging Hills guys were awesome? Well, on our way out the door to head to this show, we accidentally left the gessoed board I was suppose to paint on in our kitchen, realizing only once we began unpacking the car for the show. I stood in the hall waiting for Eric to get out of the bathroom so I could let him know our mistake and we could try to figure out what to do to fix it. While standing there I must’ve had a worried look on my face, because one of the Hanging Hills guys asked if everything was ok. I told him what was up and within minutes they were all searching the house looking for something I could paint on. Before Eric could even find out what was wrong I was handed two ready-to-go canvas boards that they dug up! Pretty amazing.
So, not a bad, if rocky, start back into playing Pocket Vinyl shows on this side of the world.