Mike Kinsella (vocals, bass and guitar), Steve Lamos (drums and trumpet) and Steve Holmes (guitar) were just three college kids enjoying the summer when they formed the emo/math-rock band American Football outside of Chicago in 1997. A self-titled EP (stream it below) arrived in 1998, with an acclaimed eponymous full-length (stream it below), filled with uncommon time signatures and jazz-influenced chords, released the following year. But then that was pretty much it, with each member going off to do his own thing afterward. And that’s where this story would end if the influential American Football (above, performing “Born to Lose” live in studio for WNYC FM) hadn’t reunited—with the addition of Mike’s cousin Nate Kinsella (bass)—in 2014 to celebrate the 15th anniversary of their LP, which was rereleased with bonus tracks and demo recordings. According to Paste magazine, “The album serves as what indie rock should be about, synthesizing the musical world around us, not dividing and separating,” and per the A.V. Club: “American Football proved that a brief existence doesn’t preclude a band from casting a long shadow.” Things went so well that the band put out another crowd-pleasing full-length named—you guessed it—American Football (stream it below) last fall. “While the record is rooted in nostalgia, so much so the cover features the same iconic house as their debut, it also manages to feel fresh and tentatively exciting, something that’s a result of the band exploring new ideas or looking at old ones from different perspectives,” said Drowned in Sound in a rave review. “Time has only strengthened the chemistry of the band, distilling its essence in to something much purer than its base product. In a year of excellent records, American Football have quite possibly made the best.” See them live at Brooklyn Steel on Sunday night. Land of Talk and Pure Bathing Culture open the show.
Tag Archives: American Football
Expertly blending punk’s volume and dynamics with post-rocks atmospherics, Joan of Arc have been anchored by Tim Kinsella (vocals and guitar) ever since forming more than two decades ago in Chicago. He’s currently backed by an original member, Jeremy Boyle (guitar), and Bobby Burg (bass), Melina Ausikaitis (guitar and vocals) and Theo Katsaounis (drums)—and the band’s first new full-length album in five years, He’s Got the Whole This Land Is Your Land in His Hands (stream it below), just came out last week. Joan of Arc (above, their new video for “Two-Toothed Troll”) “ask a very timely question: ‘What the fuck? Rarely have they had their finger so squarely on the pulse,” says PopMatters. “Patience and collaboration continue to focus and invigorate Joan of Arc.” And with new music comes a new tour. Catch them opening for American Football on Saturday at Terminal 5 and playing the early show at Mercury Lounge on Sunday.
Tags: American Football, Bobby Burg, He’s Got the Whole This Land Is Your Land in His Hands, Jeremy Boyle, Joan of Arc, Live Music, Lower East Side, Melina Ausikaitis, Mercury Lounge, Music, New York City, Preview, Terminal 5, Theo Katsaounis, Tim Kinsella, Video
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