Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Friday // June 10
Auntie Maes in Manhattan, KS
w/ Paleo

Saturday // June 11
Barley Street Tavern in Omaha, NE
w/ Gus & Call and Ted Stevens

Sunday // June 12
Ames Progressive in Ames, IA

Monday // June 13
The Beauty Shop in Fairfield, IA
w/ TBA

Tuesday // June 14
The Double Door in Chicago, IL
w/ Burrows 4, The Raj, and Groove or Die

Wednesday // June 15
The Whistler in Chicago, IL
w/ The Minneapolis Henrys

Thursday // June 16
Indy's Jukebox in Indianapolis, IN
w/ The Bonesetters, Davy Long, and Ryan Pruett

Friday // June 17
Southgate House in Newport, KY
w/ Animal Circles and Toboggan Race

Satuday // June 18
House Show in Bloomington, IN
w/ The Bonesetters and Davy Long

Sunday // June 19
House Pride in Murfreesboro, TN
w/ Davy Long and TBA

Monday // June 20
The Hi-Tone in Memphis, TN
w/ Star & Micey and Sultana

Tuesday // June 21
The All-Ways Lounge in New Orleans, LA
w/ Toast Beards and TBA

Thursday // June 23
Stafford Main Street in Bryan, TX
w/ The Ex-Optimists and TBA

Friday // June 24
House Show in Dentont, TX
w/ TBA

Satuday // June 25
Soundpony in Tulsa, OK
w/ Slothpop

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

¡Rerevolution! EP

We've been working on some songs. Here's a track entitled "Child of the '90s" from our upcoming ¡Rerevolution! EP. Hope you dig. We'll be selling physical copies on our upcoming tour which begins on June 10th at Auntie Mae's in Manhattan.

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Last Friday afternoon, I sat on the grass outside of the Beach Art Museum, listening to the band that was scheduled to play before us at a benefit show. After a Weezer cover with a rather interpretative djimbe part, one of their four rhythm guitarists stepped up to the mic. She wore a tiara, which she adjusted before singing the radio-edit of Ceelo Green's “Fuck You,” complete with censored “shhhts” and “forget-yous.” Upon hearing the song for the first time, I remember sincerely wishing that a Caucasian female would provide a more child-friendly version. At last, I was satisfied.

The Low End is not keen on covers. That is not to say that we dislike them. I am always up for a great Dylan classic, or a reinterpretation of some electronic jam. I've heard some good ones. Personal Dead-Birdhouse picks include The Bears of Blue River's take on “Dead Skunk” by Loudon Wainwright III, and Dastardly's “The Man in Me” by Bob Dylan. Local act Shaq Panther also does a wonderful version of “Cut Your Hair.” However, I do not possess Jeff Buckley's voice or Duane Allman's chops. The Low End leaves the covers to others.

And there were plenty of others. The band, who was playing their first show, played “Margaritaville,” complete with shout-outs to Kim and Kevin (“Wastin' away down in Aggieville.../some people say that Kevin is to blame/ but I know/ it's Kimberly's fault”), who I presume were in the audience. But that is understandable for a band starting out, I guess.

I sat with a kid from the local high school who was wearing our band's shirt. He surprised me with his knowledge of bands; he mentioned that he had been listening to the new tUnE-YaRdS album and one-upped me on his appreciation of R.E.M.'s “Murmur” and “Reckoning.” I quickly realized that this guy was a lot cooler than me when I was in high school (which, in retrospect, isn't saying much; see “Bleached Hair w/ Leisure Suit”). He was not pleased with the four synched-up rhythm guitars, nor with the covers.

We had long backlined our gear at this point. The band playing after us shared their ample speakers and monitors, which saved a lot of work on our part. They treated us pretty well and even recorded our live set, which was incredibly friendly. The gear and sound quality were great; we were a little phased by the awkwardness of filling more than ten square feet (our usual setup) and being visible in daylight (which we typically avoid, as a rule). Nevertheless, we had fun and played for some folk who don't regularly visit the dank DBH.

But for those who thirsted for songs they actually knew, respite would soon come. The band after us offered a variety of canonical tunes, including some Eve 6 (ah, middle school), Third Eye Blind (classic?) and the ubiquitous “Friday” by Rebecca Black (oh). Sorority girls swooned at the sight of the singer's white pants. I waited to snatch the last of our gear off stage and thank the band for letting us use their PA.

By the end of the night, after the rest of the band, my girlfriend, and her Doberman puppy (Santiago) had long abandoned me, a kid who had won a portrait of a clown approached me. "Give me one second," he told me before chasing his friend around my van with the framed painting. “You want this?” he asked unnecessarily.

I obviously took it home.

Dan/The Low End


Here are some more pics from the show:

Friday, May 6, 2011

Courthouse Blues

Earlier this week, John (the one who still has a beard, but does not look as much like an Aryan Jesus anymore) and I found ourselves in court. We arrived at 8:00 in the morning, edging our way towards the front of the line outside of the Manhattan courthouse. Once inside, we showed the notaries our yellow slips at the front desk and were directed into the courtroom.

A few months ago, a neighbor wrote us a letter. He said, “Among the litany of strangeness—including gunshots, drug busts, and fistfights on the front lawn—perhaps no tenants have shown as much disrespect as The Low End.” He continues with brilliant insights into our music, which he could hear clearly through the foot-thick stone walls. “Your music possesses a sort of derivative boredom and lack of inspiration that indicate a lack of creativity. I don't mean to be a bitter old man, I am just trying to be helpful.” Very helpful. He continues, “I know this won't change anything; I just thought I'd let you know.” He signs it with a name that can't be found in the phone book or on Google (not that we tried...). He unwittingly wrote us our first piece of U.S.-postal-service-delivered hate mail. Gratzi.

In the past few months we have received a ridiculous number of complaints from an anonymous caller (The hate mailer? An agoraphobic fan of Engelbert Humperdinck? Sean Connery/Forester?). This caller happened to get phone-happy during a practice for last week's show (see the previous entry). The cops, who realized after the second-dozenth noise complaint that this was not a one-time offense, wrote us up. "Great music, though. We couldn't tell if it was the stereo or a band." Most stereos don't stop to debate the inclusion of maraca in their mixes, but we took the half-assed complement and the court slips. "Now, you'll have to talk to a judge, and he'll figure out a fine or something. Might even let you off." He made it sound like a friendly conversation, maybe over a couple glasses of Arnold Palmer and Nilla wafers.

So, ten days later John and I waited in the courtroom. The man two rows in front of us wore enormous jeans with dragons sewn into them. A tattoo on the back of his neck read "Nora" in exquisite cursive. I must proudly add that his mustache was a few weeks behind mine. Seeing Nora-neck and looking down at the slacks I nervously picked out the night before, I realized that I might have overdressed. John had it right, wearing a flannel shirt and tennis shoes. Together, we eyed the court procedure form. "So, I guess we have to admit guilt, right?" John asked. "Ok, then I guess we tell the judge the 'mitigating circumstances.' Cool." No Arnold Palmers. We were hoping we could pull a Leadbelly and sing a song that would wipe our records clean of iniquity. The form had no such clause.

We sat through the earlier charges. A morbidly obese, red-haired woman was charged with trespassing and driving without a license. A frat boy had a lawyer and negotiated his way out of an underage drinking offense. Nora-neck was facing a jail sentence for driving with a suspended license for the third time. The judge, an elderly man with a combover, was actually pretty friendly. He convinced the trespasser to get a court-appointed lawyer to help her case, rather than plead nolo contendere. He humored some of the less-offensive offenders.

Then, the judge called my name. Now, The Low End knows we are noisy, and we've taken some effort to reduce this. If you've been to any Dead Birdhouse shows in the past few months, you might have notice the bunker-esque window coverings we have installed. You might also have noticed the mattress we shove against the soundhole above the wurlitzer. I summarized our efforts and included our most recent move to the basement (where the original dead bird lived). "I'm glad to hear you've been making adjustments. I'm giving you the $25 standard fine." Thanks, judgie. He wisely assumed that John's charges were under similar circumstances since they were given on the same night; he issued him an equal fine.

We signed some forms and paid our fees at the notary desk. The fine was fine by us. But the court fees made for another $80 each, more than three times the expense of the offense. As we walked out, John waived his yellow court-order form. "Rock 'n' Roll souvenir," he stated triumphantly. We had become midwestern Keith Richards. Outlaws. Rebels. Neighborhood toughs.