Search Results for "Swingin' Utters"

Free Comp Download: Suburban Home Records -“We Are The Kings of This Friday Night”

Suburban Home Records  has posted a free download of “Suburban Home Mix Tape Vol 8, “We Are The Kings of This Friday Night.” The comp features songs by Swingin’ UttersOld Man Markley and much more!

You can snag it here.

Show Review: Swingin’ Utters – Live at The Pawn Shop in Edmonton, Alberta (March 5) and Dickens Pub in Calgary, Alberta (March 6)

Swingin’ Utters

Anyone that’s been to a concert in an arena venue, dealt with the crowds, the parking, the shitty seats and the overpriced, well, everything, can appreciate the intimacy that seeing one of your favorite bands play a little pub can provide.

Seeing the Swingin’ Utters in a venue where even if you were standing at the back of the room you’re still closer to the stage than you would be in the front row at an arena is truly the only way to see one of the best (and I mean top two or three) punk bands in the world today. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure seeing the boys at Punk Rock Bowling in Vegas this May will be great as well, but the Punk Rock Bowling crowd won’t be in danger of being pelleted with Johnny’s spit and sweat. I’ll let you decide for yourself if that’s missing out or a lucky break.

Alberta doesn’t have a lot of drawing power unless you’re a cowboy or have a penchant for big malls, so we are often left out when bands are touring the western U.S. and skip up to Vancouver and back down into America again without venturing any further east. Every once in a while though, punk rock royalty will come tearing through the prairies and make our day. The last time a band of Swingin’ Utters’ caliber played Alberta was probably the Swingin’ Utters themselves in 2010 while touring their instant classic Here, Under Protest. Even then though, the band just played Calgary and went back down to Uncle Sam. The last time they were in Edmonton was in 2001 when they came in support of NOFX. Needless to say, having the band come to Alberta and play both Edmonton and Calgary meant, for me anyway, seeing the band in Edmonton and then driving down to catch them in Calgary the next night.

Touring around and opening for the band for a few weeks of the tour is the L.A. based country rock outfit Wild Roses (not a reference to Alberta’s being known as Wild Rose Country, though a happy coincidence when the band found out I’m sure). They’re a very talented band with a lot of tightly crafted, catchy songs, but despite the Utters’ occasional forays into country territory, they’re an odd choice for an opening act.  They didn’t get much response for their set in Edmonton, but Calgary (Canada’s cowboy capital) was more receptive. The Roses aren’t without their fair share of punk rock cred though. The band’s lead singer/guitarist Marc Orrell, one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet, was one of the guitarists in Dropkick Murphys for eight years and played briefly in Jim Lindberg’s post-Pennywise project The Black Pacific before Lindberg went back to Pennywise and Marc started the Roses. All in all the Wild Roses are a great band with really good songs and Orrell is one of the most entertaining people to watch live you will probably ever see. They’re just getting ready to release their debut EP, so look out for it because when it drops, this band will take off.

One of the best things about seeing the Swingin’ Utters play two nights in a row is that their sets both night were completely different. Yeah, they have the staples they played both nights and probably play every night (Next In Line, Teenage Genocide, Catastrophe) but, with the exception of Catastrophe, even those core songs are played at different times in the set. This not only gives the fans that are catching them more than once a fresh experience both nights, but keeps things from growing stale for the band themselves. In fact, before the Edmonton show Johnny (vocals), Darius (guitar, vocals) and Greg (drums) could be found at a table in the middle of the bar with a piece of scrap paper and a sharpie making up the set list not two hours before they hit the stage, just whatever they felt like playing that night.

The other remarkable thing about their set list is, for a band that’s been around for over twenty years, not only did they cover nearly every album in their discography both nights, but the songs all stand quite comfortably together in a live setting. While the Utters have remained fairly true to their blue collar street punk sound throughout the years, there’s no denying that many of the songs you’ll find on Poorly Formed sound a million miles away from the songs you’ll find on The Streets of San Francisco, or even A Juvenile Product of the Working Class. Part of this has to do with a natural progression in songwriting over the years, but another part undoubtedly has to do with the influence of a Mr. Jack Dalrymple, the talented singer and songwriter behind or part of such bands as One Man Army, the Re-Volts (with ex-Utters bassist and Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies vocalist Sean ‘Spike’ Slawson) and the first couple of Dead To Me releases.

It can be easy to forget that Jack’s been in the band going on ten years now, especially to folks outside of California. Jack wasn’t with the band the last two times they came to Alberta. I asked the band’s current bass player Miles Peck (from well regarded Bay area punksters The Sore Thumbs) why Jack doesn’t tour with the band and he told me that in order to provide health care for his young son, he has to keep working and can’t usually take the time off. That’s admirable of Jack (anyone who would put music before their family is a moron) but is the sad truth behind not only being in a punk band that doesn’t make a million dollars a year, but living in a country that doesn’t provide those necessities for free. We tend to take that for granted up here in the frosty north.

Anyway, no Jack, no second guitarist on this particular tour, and while the band does sound a little lighter in the mix in that regard, the four remaining members were able to make up for it with talent and energy and fill the sound out regardless.

One of the things that the Swingin’ Utters are famous for in their live shows is the charismatic stage presence of singer Johnny Bonnel (who also designs all of the band’s merchandise). All of the members of the band give it their all and put in energetic performances but it’s Johnny’s sweaty intensity and movements on stage resembling some kind of punk rock Frankenstein that make it hard to take your eyes off him. There was an especially poignant moment at the Edmonton show, when the band played Untitled 21 from the record Five Lessons Learned. It’s a great, catchy, fast song and if you didn’t pay attention to the words you might even mistake it for being a cheerful reminiscence of youth. The reality of the song is something much more sad though. It tells the story of a man who feels that his life peaked at the age of 21 and has gone steadily downhill every day since, leading him to drugs and alcohol as a way of escaping his life and himself. Now I’m not saying that Johnny feels that this song accurately describes his current state of mind, it would be hard to imagine the singer of one of the most highly regarded punk bands on the planet feeling himself a failure. Watching Johnny belt the song out that night though sent shivers down my spine, as if he were pleading with the song that it not be so. I don’t know, I could be reading into it too much, but I don’t remember seeing a more passionate vocal performance.

Both nights it felt like the show was over far too soon. Keeping track of the song list though, they played about 23 songs in each city, which is roughly the same amount of time as their Live In A Dive cd (the vinyl version has 25 songs). That’s not bad and considering they’ve released two proper records, a few 7 inches and a B-sides compilation since then and still managed to play songs from every facet of their timeline.

I worked with a guy one time who was in his 40’s and used to be somewhat of a staple in the Edmonton punk scene. We worked the night shift at a youth shelter in town and would spend hours talking about the shows we had seen and the bands we loved, or do, and I remember him telling me about the time he hitchhiked to Vancouver to see The Clash in the 80’s. He said at the time he knew he was witnessing an amazing band at the height of their powers, but you never know until many years later that by going to that show, you were an active participant in music history.

I expect the Swingin’ Utters have many more years left in them and many more great albums and, if we’re lucky, even a few more jaunts up here to Canada’s cowpoke capital. But I’m not taking this band for granted while they’re still active and I have no doubt that in twenty years I’ll be having a similar conversation with a young punk who can’t believe I got to see the Swingin’ Utters twice in two nights back in 2013. ‘What I wouldn’t give’ he’ll say, ‘what I wouldn’t give.’

Video: Swingin’ Utters play “Fifteenth and T” live in Vancouver

Seminal punk rockers Swingin’ Utters are currently on a tour of the west coast, which recently stopped in Vancouver, BC. An audience member took video of the band playing their classic song “Fifteenth and T” and posted it online for our viewing pleasure.

You can check the video out here.

Swingin’ Utters last released “Poorly Formed” on February 19th via Fat Wreck Chords. Click here to read our review of the album.

Free Song Download: Swingin’ Utters – “Poorly Formed”

Seminal punk rockers Swingin’ Utters are offering the title track off their new album “Poorly Formed” up for free download.

You can snag it here.

“Poorly Formed” was released on February 19th through Fat Wreck Chords. Click here to check out a full list of dates and locations on the band’s upcoming US tour and then head over here to stream the entire new record.

Album Review: Swingin’ Utters – “Poorly Formed”

Having the Fat Wreck Chords logo on your record is a stamp of punk approval. Sure, they have released questionable records in the past, that is the law of averages finally kicking in, but very few. Much is made of the family values that are ardently displayed by the label. Fat Mike, to not stifle his acts, only ever offers bands 1 year contracts; yet some of the roster have stayed their entire careers with the label, a polar opposite to how the music industry game is normally played. Labels want you while your hot, and when you’re not, you’re gone. That’s Fat Mike’s secret, he doesn’t sign a band because they will make him money. He does so because he likes what he hears, and is rarely wrong.

One of the aforementioned Fat Wreck Chords main stays are Swingin’ Utters. A band that has been in existence now for over 25 years, albeit including a lengthy break. In 2003, the Utters decided to go on hiatus. Their own families needed them and life wouldn’t wait. Swingin Utters fans waited as patiently as they could and in 2011 were rewarded with the excellent Here, Under Protest, the band’s first album in 8 years. The band were back. Two years later we are graced with another album, Poorly Formed.

‘Librarians Are Hiding Something’ starts things off in style. The track was made available on 7″ last year and is special for a few reasons. Firstly the track marks the beginning for new bassist Miles Peck who was brought in to replace the departing Spike Slawson, hence making his debut on a Swingin’ Utters record. Secondly it acts as Jack Dalrymple’s debut in a songwriting sense, as he co-wrote the song with vocalist Johnny Bonnel. It also just happens to be a great track and a very strong start to the album.

Second track ‘Brains’ is fantastic, a hi tempo song that takes its influence from various things not excluding legendary ‘protopunks’ The Velvet Underground. There is a definite progression to the bands sound and ‘Brains’ is a perfect example of that. This isn’t just another punk rock record, although Swingin’ Utters are certainly no ordinary punk band. They are not afraid to explore new territory and do so with great results. While fresh faced acts churn out soulless nonsense on a daily basis that marketing companies try to force feed the public; Swingin’ Utters, who after a quarter of a century, are still writing original and relevant music, and managing to do so while keeping it interesting. No easy feat.

‘Stuck In A Circle’ takes a more traditional route and would nestle comfortably on previous album Here Under Protest. It’s a great track and its quiet-loud direction is a refreshing change. Next up the band get all blue grass on our asses with ‘Im A Little Bit Country’. It’s a simple ditty and is extremely catchy as a result. One day Guitarist Darius Koski found Bonnel’s penned lyrics amongst his own and subsequently wrote the song in half an hour, the result will surely become a live favourite for years to come.

Direct punk numbers such as ‘Dreadlock Dread Reggae’ are the band’s bread and butter and something few bands do better. The humorously titled ‘The Fake Rat Of Dave Navarro’ is similar, complete with band harmonies, its 2 minutes in length is seemingly over much faster, now that’s relativity.

Nobody wants to hear a track by track analysis of an album, unless it’s coming from the band themselves; which is what this review would end up as, if all the songs that made an impression were listed. They’re all good, each song has its own charm and energy. The Swingin’ Utters that everybody knows and loves are present and accounted for, the high qualty punk rock is a given. It is no surprise that Poorly Formed is a good album, but only the lucky few who give it a listen will actually understand just how good.

Swingin Utters stream new album “Poorly Formed”

California punk stalwarts Swingin’ Utters have posted a stream of their new album “Poorly Formed.”

You can give a listen to the new album here.

The album, the band’s 8th effort, features 14 tracks and comes out February 19th via Fat Wreck Chords. The band is also about to begin a west coast tour in support of the album later this month, check those dates out here.

Swingin’ Utters and Modern Action release split 7″

Seminal punk band Swingin’ Utters have joined with Modern Action (members of The Briefs, The Bodies, and The Shifters) to release a new split 7″.

The album was released in January through Modern Action Records (the new record label co-founded by Briefs guitarist/vocalist Daniel J. Travanti), and features a new song from both bands.

Check out the limited edition album artwork at left, and head here to see the two-song tracklist.

Head to the Modern Action Records website for more information.

Swingin’ Utters rundown “Poorly Formed” track-by-track

Even though Poorly Formed, the new album by the Swingin’ Utters, doesn’t come out until next week, vocalist Johnny Bonnel and guitarist/vocalist Darius Koski have posted a track-by-track breakdown of the entire thing right here. Find out what they have to say about the songs before you even hear them.

Swingin’ Utters released their seventh studio album, Here Under Protest, in April 2011. Poorly Formed is due for a February 19 release.

Swingin’ Utters stream “Brains” from upcoming album “Poorly Formed”

The Swingin’ Utters have premiered another new song from their upcoming album “Poorly Formed.” The song, “Brains”,  is a Jack-arranged, Jonny-penned tune inspired by  “my wife, Velvet Underground’s ‘Sunday Morning,’ The Cure, and The Walking Dead. It’s never just one thing!” Check it out here.

The Swingin Utters will release “Poorly Formed” on February 19th through Fat Wreck Chords.

Swingin Utters announce US tour dates

The Swingin Utters have announced they’ll be hitting the road for a tour of the United States, which kicks of in mid-February.

You can check out a full list of dates and locations on the tour here.

The Swingin Utters will release “Poorly Formed” on February 19th through Fat Wreck Chords. Click here to stream a new song, entitled “Stuck In a Circle,” which will be appearing on the record.

New Song: Swingin’ Utters – “Stuck in a Circle”

Seminal punk band Swingin’ Utters have released a new song titled “Stuck in a Circle”. The song is set to appear on the band’s upcoming Fat Wreck release Poorly Formed.

You can listen to “Stuck in a Circle” right here.

Swingin’ Utters released their seventh studio album, Here Under Protest, in April 2011. Poorly Formed is due for a February 19 release.

Punk Rock Bowling: Bad Religion, Lagwagon, Swingin Utters, Bouncing Souls and a sorta reunited Black Flag

Its time again to start thinking about how you’re going to make it to the annual Punk Rock Bowling in Vegas this year.  The festival, held Memorial Day weekend, May 25-27 in downtown Las Vegas, has just announced the first group of bands for this year’s lineup and its a doozy.

The bands announced so far are The Flag (original Black Flag members Keith Morris, Chuck Dukowski and Bill Stevenson with Stephen Egerton performing the music of Black Flag), Bad Religion, The Damned, DRI, Lagwagon, Subhumans, Swingin’ Utters, The Bouncing Souls and Lower Class Brats with many more bands to be announced in the months to come.

The Golden Nugget is serving as the official hotel. Weekend passes for the festival are $105 and go on sale Tuesday, January 29th at 1 p.m. (PST). More info can be found at and we will of course keep you updated as more news is released.

Swingin’ Utters announce release info for new full-length, “Poorly Formed”

Seminal punk band Swingin’ Utters have announced release details for their upcoming full-length!

Entitled “Poorly Formed,” the newest offering from the Utters will hit shelves February 19th courtesy of Fat Wreck Chords. Cover art for “Poorly Formed” can be viewed at the upper left of this story. Here’s what guitarist Darius Koski says about the new material:

Our new record was written pretty quickly, more so than anything we’ve done in the past. One of the reasons, I think, was that Jack had several songs in various stages of completeness, but once he decided to give Johnny the music, and have Johnny write the lyrics and vocal melody to his instrumentation, things started to fly… So there are several of these Johnny/Jack songs on the record (which marks the first songs Jack’s written with us). In that way, it was a brand new writing process for us, so it was pretty exciting, and we’re really happy with the way all of these songs came out in the end.

Swingin’ Utters last full-length, “Here Under Protest” (their last with long-time bassist Spike Slawson) was released in April 2011.

Swingin Utters announces Australian tour with Frank Turner and Dropkick Murphys

Seminal punk band, Swingin’ Utters have announced that they will be touring Australia with Frank Turner and the Dropkick Murphys. You can check out the dates right here.

Swingin Utters last released “Here Under Protest” April 26th via Fat Wreck Chords.

New Music: Swingin’ Utters – “The Librarians Are Hiding Something”

Swingin’ Utters has just released a new 7-inch today, entitled “The Librarians Are Hiding Something.” through Fat Wreck Chords, and has made the title track available to stream on Fat. Check it out here.

The band also recently announced that they have finished working on their new full-length, which will see an early 2013 release (more updates as they become available).

Swingin’ Utters’ last studio album “Here Under Protest” was released on April 26th, 2011 through Fat Wreck.

Check out a couple tour dates in California here.