Search Results for "Joey Cape"

DS Exclusive: Joey Cape talks Lagwagon’s plans for Punk Rock Bowling, FEST 17 and beyond

This should come as not exactly breaking news, but this coming weekend in Las Vegas marks the twentieth installment of Punk Rock Bowling. Created by Stern Brothers of Youth Brigade fame two decades ago, the annual bacchanalian celebration of all things punk rock has grown into a much larger festival than it originally started out as. Yet somehow it has remained true to the the spirit of the scene that spawned it. It remains a must-see destination for punk rockers from not just around the country but around the world. Like, for example, Joey Cape.

The solo artist-slash-Scorpio-slash-Gimme-Gimme-slash-Lagwagon-frontman is not only pulling double duty at the event this year (he’s headlining a solo gig on Friday alongside Tim Barry – limited tickets still available here – and Lagwagon headlines the sold-out Fat Wreck Chords showcase on Saturday), but he’s been in attendance for all but a small handful of Punk Rock Bowling weekends over the last two decades. And while it’s long been a compelling event for Cape even if he’s not playing, he remembers having misgivings in the earliest years about if the concept would take off. “I’ll be honest, I remember the first year or the second year, thinking that “this isn’t going to last!” I didn’t know that it would work. I was definitely skeptical,” he explains. While Vegas has long attracted people from across all walks of life and garnered a well-earned reputation for glitz, glamour, and debauchery, there was something about the derelicts taking over and throwing a bowling party that might be too much for even Sin City to handle. “I just imagined with all those people, that I was going to enjoy (the first installment of PRB) because it was definitely going to be the first and last one of those, you know!” Cape credits not only the Stern brothers for running a great ship, but the location itself for creating a unique environment that keeps the festival working. “It’s all in one area, and it’s in Vegas, which is just the built-in best possible platform. You throw a stone in any direction and there’s a bar or something else to do that’s wild and fun. That place has always been an escape for adults; like a Disneyland for adults. So you couple that with this kind of music, and there’s the simple absurdity of it that works for people.

There are a handful of milestone events coming rapidly down the ‘pike for Lagwagon this year, although when your band has been in existence for such a long time, there are seemingly no shortage of such milestones to celebrate. The band’s highly-regarded fourth album, Double Plaidinum, somehow turned twenty last year, while its stellar – albeit shorter – follow-up Let’s Talk About Feelings reaches the same milestone this year. Once Cape and his Lagwagon cohorts return from a fairly lengthy European tour in August, there are plans in the works to hopefully celebrate both albums in a meaningful way, and to tie them into an even larger and more meaningful milestone: 2019, you see, marks Lagwagon’s thirtieth year as a band. Kinda.

Within the band, we kinda go “is it ‘88 or ‘89?” explains Cape. “There was a band in ‘88 that I wasn’t in that was the band I joined. When I joined the band (Section Eight), I started writing songs for the band, and it was enough of a revamp. I like to think (it was) ‘88, but it’s funny, the one other member that was in the band before me, Chris Flippin, The Big Bitch, prefers ‘89.” Because of the somewhat nebulous origin of the band’s initial formation, the band have blown by several milestone anniversaries in the past – their 25th anniversary roughly coincided with the Fat Wreck Chords 25th anniversary tour a few years back, though even that tour came around the label’s actual 26th anniversary – but whatever timeline you go by Cape and his bandmates seem to realize that this milestone is an important one. “You have anniversaries that you’re married every year, and the tenth anniversary of a marriage is a big deal, so the thirtieth anniversary of a band should be celebrated! That’s five assholes trying to get along! And they’re not even having sex!”

Some plans to celebrate the band’s coinciding milestones are still taking shape, but we do know that Lagwagon will perform Let’s Talk About Feelings in its entirety at Fest 17 in Gainesville this coming October. Album-specific shows and tours have become more of the norm for bands of all genres over the last handful of years, and while that might give one initial pause to jump into that fray, there is a special lure to events like that if they’re done the right way. “I love doing it because I think there is a historic time-stamp that coincides with the release of an album,” Cape explains. “We obviously come from a generation where sequence and the entire album matter and have their own feel. That still matters to us, being old men in a day and age where singular songs and Spotify are the norm. I think there’s something really cool about doing it with a band. It takes playing a whole record to really revisit that vibe and that feeling and that climate that the band was in.”

Stay tuned for more on Let’s Talk About Feelings and Double Plaidinum plans in the ramp-up to Lagwagon’s 30ish anniversary in 2019. And who knows..maybe we’ll even get new music before 2019 is up: it has, somehow, been four years since the release of their latest full-length, Hang, after all. “We’ll probably get back in the studio by the end of the year or the beginning of next year, so we are going to actually follow through,” says Cape. “After we made Hang, everybody agreed and said “let’s stop doing this bullshit, let’s get right back on the horse after tour.” Between touring for Hang and touring for Fat Wreck’s 25th, anniversary, that “tour” lasted for a couple years, however. Cape jokes: “we toured for like two years, and at the end of two years it’s like “alright, I’ll see you guys NEVER! I love you guys, but fuck you!!

Head below to read our full chat with the Joey Cape. We caught up over the phone on the eve of “Lagwagon Day,” and a long, winding, fun conversation ensued, ranging from details on the band’s history to tidbits about new solo material. And let us know if you’re in Vegas for PRB or Gainesville for Fest!



Album Review: Lagwagon – “Hang”

Ok, so Hang is four years old at the time of writing this but considering there was a nine year gap between this and Lagwangon’s last full length offering I think I can cut myself some slack. I started listening to these guys around the release of Hoss in 1996 and was a pretty avid fan through to Lets Talk About Feelings which came out in 1998. Those two releases (and Double Plaidinum which came between them) leaned more heavily on the melodic side of the melodic hardcore genre, with nods to their heavier, more metal infused first two albums. The band then went quiet for five years while members pursued other musical endeavors, singer Joey Cape’s new band (Bad Astronaut) taking an even poppier direction. With 2003’s Blaze, the band’s metal sound from their debut and sophomore releases (Duh 1992 and Trashed 1994) was more prevalent and the record failed to make much of an impression on me. In the intervening 15 years (fuuuuuuuck) Lets Talk About Feelings has been my go to record from Lagwagon. From that opening chugging riff on After You My Friend to the bittersweet melancholy on penultimate stormer May 16 the album is pretty much perfect all the way through.

Fast forward to 2018 and in preparation for the upcoming Menzingers / Lagwagon / Lawrence Arms show in London in August (not to mention Bad Cop Bad Cop and The Lillingtons) I’m filling in the blanks in my Lagwagon education. Resolve (2005) was written in the aftermath of the suicide of their friend and former drummer Derrick Plouride and lyrically is, understandably, influenced by that tragic event. Musically the album is a mix of melodic and heavier songs and it’s actually a really great addition to their catalogue which is quickly integrating itself into my current playlist.

Which brings me to their most recent, albeit now four year old, offering – Hang. It opens with Burden of Proof, a one-minute Joey Cape acoustic number which sees the first reference to the album’s title (“I see you hanging by your noose. Delivered, divine excuse”) of which there are several more throughout the album. As this subdued number fades out, second track Reign kicks in at breakneck speed, Cape’s vocals switching from mellow and melancholic to aggressive and angry and Lagwagon are back in style. There’s a really cool call back to a lyric in the opener (“It’s a sonnet. There’s no way to put a ribbon on it”) and the aforementioned “hanging man” so if you weren’t following the song titles you could assume the two openers were actually just one song. It’s an absolute belter and I’d love to see them open a set with these two songs back to back. I think the crowd would verily loose their shit! Made of Broken Parts starts with a super metal riff and chugs along nicely with a breakdown in the middle before further nods to the album title (“We can’t hang so we must hang. Can’t hang on so we disconnect”). Following song Cog in the Machine continues the more metallic bent and lyrical theme (machines, parts etc) and keeps the album flowing nicely. Poison in the Well is less overtly metal influenced, although does have a meandering guitar solo in the middle before returning to it’s previous fast pace. Obsolete Absolute starts with the sounds of typewriter before a rumbling bass line leads us into several minutes of an enjoyable rocking instrumental which is then joined by a spoken word narration of things which are becoming obsolete. Around two and half minutes in, the drum tempo increases and a pick slide delineates a shift in the song. Cape’s urgent vocals combine with fast tempo guitar work and it quickly turns into one of the stand out tracks on the album. We hear more about our friend “swinging…on the tree” and the spoken word narration returns to great effect, it really is an exceptional six minutes of music. Western Settlements starts with a relatively pedestrian but enjoyable chugging riff and beat before the drums and bass strip away to leave the guitar to accompany Joey Cape’s sombre vocal which comes in (“A hell of a thing. Hanging a man. Taking everything he has. And all he’ll ever have”). Then the rest of the band kick in again and we’ve got another belter on our hands. Burning Out in Style, opens with a bright vocal over a pulsing guitar and we get one of the most melodic tracks on the release. It’s a fucking corker too, exposing the mundanity and emptiness that lies beneath the shiny façade that some people portray themselves with. One More Song starts with a piano intro underneath a gentle vocal from Joey and is a poignant tribute to the much loved and sadly missed Tony Sly. It references a song Joey heard Tony working on the week before he died which becomes a metaphor for wishing he was still with us. It’s another slice of pure melodic perfection and a fitting tribute to the great man. Following song, Drag, is a reworking of one of Cape’s acoustic numbers, discussing his addiction to nicotine. It’s a little heavier than the previous two tracks without returning to the more metal sound from earlier in the album. You Know Me continues in the same musical vein, a mid tempo rocker which discusses how disconnected we are from each other despite the devices we now have that in theory could bring us closer together. Album closer In Your Wake is a bit of a blend of all the musical styles and themes from the album. It rocks along nicely then builds to a climax, only to slow down to a super poppy repeated refrain (“Inside your head”) over acoustic guitar and a slower drum beat which then itself builds, the full band kick in and we’re told “Your next to hang” over some breakneck speed classic ‘Wagon.

So there we have it, nine years in the making and four more before I actually listened to the damn thing and it’s pretty fucking special, I wish I’d pulled my finger out earlier. It has an urgency and freshness whilst still unmistakably being a Lagwagon album which should please diehard fans and win over new ones. Roll on August!

4/5 Stars



Joey Cape (Lagwagon) release live video from 350 Brewing Company

Joey Cape, frontmant of Lagwagon, now has a video out of his live performance at the 350 Brewing Company.

His last news included that he and Brian Wahlstrom will be playing a few shows across the Canadian providence of Alberta in March. The three-date run will see the Scorpios bandmates supported by Seth Anderson and Ben Sir.

Check out the video below!



Joey Cape announces Alberta, Canada shows with Brian Wahlstrom

Lagwagon frontman Joey Cape has announced he and Brian Wahlstrom will be playing a few shows across the Canadian providence of Alberta in March. The three-date run will see the Scorpios bandmates supported by Seth Anderson and Ben Sir.

Check out the details below to see if there’s a show near you.



Joey Cape to play California acoustic shows

Lagwagon frontman Joey Cape has announced a handful of acoustic shows in California slated for next February. These dates will also feature Brian Wahlstrom of Scorpios, PEARS singer Zach Quinn, and Donald Spence from Versus The World. See if there’s a show near you below.

Cape’s latest solo album One Week Record came out earlier this year.



Album Review: Joey Cape – “One Week Record”

One would be hard-pressed to find another singer-songwriter as prolific as Joey Cape. Already under his belt are eight Lagwagon albums, three Bad Astronaut albums, LPs by The Playing Favorites, Scorpios, and Joey Cape’s Bad Loud, not to mention his role in a whole bunch of Me First and the Gimme Gimmes releases, as well as countless seven-inch and compilation appearances.

And here’s another. Joey Cape’s One Week Record, on his own label, One Week Records, kicks off the same way Lagwagon kicked off Hang, with the one-minute acoustic “Burden of Proof” introducing “Reign”. The two albums begin similarly enough that at the conclusion of “Burden” the listener isn’t positive which album he’s listening to until it either takes off at blistering speeds, as with Hang, or, as is the case here, continues as if performed by a guy on a street corner wearing a “Joey Cape is Bullshit” t-shirt with his guitar case opened to invite coins.

The idea of One Week Records is to produce ten songs in seven days, all within the comfort of Cape’s home. The limited schedule is designed to eliminate the temptation to overproduce and let the songs “give an honest representation of the artist’s creativity.” Membership to One Week Records is available, making it feel more like a club than a typical record label. Cape had previously recorded five songs, available as a bonus only to those with membership to the label. He has since expanded his five-song One Weekend Record to a full ten-song album. Because it is his label, his studio, and his house, one can’t help assuming Joey cheated a little and spent more than seven days recording it – evidenced by guest appearances by One Week artists Walt Hamburger, Yotam Ben Horin, Brian Wahlstrom, and Laura Mardone, all of whom have recorded albums with Cape – but when you’re the owner, you can do what you want.

Without liner notes accompanying the digital download it’s difficult to know for sure who is doing what, though sometimes it’s obvious: that’s Laura Mardone’s sweet voice lending some interest to an otherwise boring arrangement of Lagwagon’s post-hiatus favorite “E Dagger.” Brian Wahlstrom, Cape’s Scorpios bandmate and frequent guest keyboardist on punk albums, is heard tinkling the ivories on nearly every track, most prominently in “Laymens Terms”, what with his instrumental introduction and, later in the same track, some pretty nifty harmonies. Too, Joey opts to leave the guitar out entirely during the first minute-plus of “Sick” with only Wahlstrom’s keys accompanying his voice until the downbeat of the first chorus.

We may still call him “Joey”, but Joey Cape is getting old – he just turned 50, for crying out loud! Needless to say, he’s not singing about girls too often these days. Instead, his friends are dying. “Days of New” is a tribute to Bad Astronaut and original Lagwagon drummer Derrick Plourde, and “One Last Song” features a shout out to Cape’s best bud, the late great Tony Sly. Joey clearly misses them both dearly, but, rather than somber funereal ballads, both tunes are upbeat to better convey celebrations of their lives, and their impact on Cape’s own.

No new songs here, this is an album of Cape-fronted band covers: one Bad Astronaut song (opener from Twelve Small Steps, 2006) and another from Joey’s least talked about side project, the Playing Favorites (“Waiting”, from I Remember When I was Pretty, 2007). The remaining eight were all originally Lagwagon songs, including three from Lagwagon’s latest full-length, Hang. “Obsolete Absolute” is a rare example of a fast punk song being longer in duration than its slow acoustic version, and is one of the strongest tracks on each album. Cape softly plucks the strings of his acoustic guitar, outlining the opening chords, providing the impression that the guitar is in the background even as the only sound present, before his voice presents the opening melody. A piano is added halfway through the first verse, and then light gang vocals and vocal harmonies to embellish the chorus. Fan-tastic.

These One Week and One Weekend records are digital releases, though PEARS’ Zach Quinn’s One Week Record was given a limited vinyl pressing through Fat Wreck Chords, so perhaps something similar will happen with Cape’s album.

Find another example of a songwriter providing so many alternate versions to previously recorded songs; not live recordings from acoustic sets, but – between two split albums with Tony Sly, a split album with Jon Snodgrass, six songs between Cape’s first two solo albums, Bridge and Doesn’t Play Well With Others, as well as numerous standalone tracks scattered here and there – actual studio recordings. I can’t think of anyone, at least not in the punk world, the only sect of pop music I feel qualified to discuss. Any punk fan ought to appreciate what Joey Cape has brought to the genre, and most would enjoy this album. Joey Cape’s One Week Record is not as polished as the splits with Tony Sly, nor do I think is it as strong. For a Lagwagon fan, however, it’s a must-have.

4/5 Stars



Joey Cape announces acoustic shows in Spain

Lagwagon frontman Joey Cape has announced he will be playing a handful of acoustic shows in Spain early next year. The brief tour will see Cape supported by Dani Llamas.

Check out the tour dates below to see if there’s a show near you.

Joey Cape most recently released an album of acoustic versions of Lagwagon and Bad Astronaut songs through his label One Week Records.



PEARS frontman Zach Quinn to re-release solo album

PEARS vocalist Zach Quinn has announced that he will be re-releasing his solo album through Fat Wreck Chords on November 11, 2016.

The album was released earlier this year on Joey Cape‘s One Week Records.



Joey Cape streams acoustic version of “The Burden of Proof / Reign”

Joey Cape just released an album of acoustic versions of Lagwagon songs. You can listen to the stripped-down rendition of “The Burden of Proof / Reign” below.

The album was released through Cape’s own One Week Records. Buy it here.



Scorpios (Joey Cape, Jon Snodgrass & Brian Wahlstrom) recording new album

According to Lagwagon frontman Joey Cape, Scorpios (his side-project with Jon Snodgrass and Brian Wahlstrom) has a new album in the works. All we know about the record right now is they began recording it on May 15th, but we’ll keep you posted as more details surface.

This will be the band’s first album without Tony Sly, who passed away in 2012. Their debut album was released in 2011.



Fat Wreck Chords to release unplugged comp “Mild In The Streets”

This is pretty cool. Fat Wreck Chords are going to be putting out an “unplugged” compilation featuring a bunch of Fat bands (or their front men and women) doing stripped down versions of old classics and a few newbies. Here’s the announcement directly from Fat:

We have a new FAT comp! Mild in the Streets: Fat Music Unplugged will be released on July 1st. This is a collection of songs from punk bands and singers who trade in their blaring amps and distortion pedals for acoustic guitars and minimalist arrangements. Jammed with 16 soulful songs, including 5 previously unreleased, this comp is a great listen front to back, and just what we need to get the day rolling. Capped by a bonus track of a full symphony recording of NOFX’s “The Decline,” this new comp is a unique must-have. And a big thanks to all the Fat Record Store fans who appear on the cover! Find your face and tell your friends, you’re on the cover of a FAT record!

Check out the full track list and place a pre-order right here.



Joey Cape announces European “Stitch Puppy” dates w/ Yotam, Walt Hamburger + Laura Mardon

The man/myth/legend that is Joey Cape is taking his Stitch Puppy tour across the pond for a month’s worth of dates in UK and mainland Europe. The jaunt kicks off March 15th in Glasgow and wraps up April 9th in Stuttgart. Caper will be accompanied on all dates by signees to Cape’s One Week Records label, Yotam, Walt Hamburger and Laura Mardon. Check out the full rundown below.

Joe Cape, who is not, in fact, bullshit, released Stitch Puppy on Fat Wreck Chords back in September. If you haven’t picked it up and thus don’t have it on your “Best of 2015” list yet, do yourself a favor here.



Joey Cape’s Daytrotter session available for streaming

As the title would lead you to believe, Joey Cape‘s Daytrotter session is now available to stream here.

Cape’s session, titled The Rest Of Us Will Be Here Breathin’, features a little bit of everything from the Caper. It starts with the song “Moral Compass,” off his latest solo release, Stitch Puppy. Then it goes to an acoustic version of the Lagwagon song, “I Must Be Hateful,” off the band’s Blaze album. Then it’s a newer song, “Reign,” off Lagwagon’s latest album, Hang (for Daytrotter members only).

The session was recorded at San Francisco’s Studio Paradiso. Along with the music, there’s also a fun little illustration, which you can see to the left, done by Johnnie Cluney.

Joey Cape, as I just mentioned, last released his solo album, Stitch Puppy, on Fat Wreck Chords in September. You can buy a copy of that one here.



Video: Joey Cape and Walt Hamburger strip down for Punks In Vegas

The inimitable Joey Cape may be right in the early stages of another Lagwagon tour, but that didn’t stop him from teaming up with his One Week Records signee Walt Hamburger for a three-song stripped down session for the folks at Punks In Vegas. During the session, the duo performed the Lagwagon tracks “Burden of Proof” and “Reign” from last year’s stellar Hang along with “Moral Compass” from Cape’s equally stellar Stitch Puppy, and “Three Tattoos” from Hamburger’s One Week Records release. Check out the videos here.

 



Video: Joey Cape does acoustic version of “Burden Of Proof / Reign”

I swear Joey Cape just can’t seem to do wrong these days. I’m a sucker for his solo stuff, especially acoustic covers of Lagwagon songs and its seems that doesn’t just apply to the oldie but goodies. In this recently filmed “Trundle Session” a rather inebriated Capester absolutely crushes an acoustic version of “Burden Of Proof / Reign”, the opening tracks of Lagwagon’s 2014 comeback album “Hang.” Check it out below and tell me I’m wrong.

Joey Cape released Stitch Puppy, his first solo album in nearly 5 years, in September through Fat Wreck Chords.