In their 10 plus years as a band, Lansing Michigan’s The Stick Arounds have never shied away from the music that inspired them. Three full-length LPs and a dozen singles later, the influence of the songcraft of bands like Sloan, Teenage Fanclub, Big Star, and other power pop luminaries is as evident as ever on their new EP Waiting For The Click.
“We’re Not Even Close” is the painfully familiar tale of failed relationships, told in the most midwest way possible: through rock bombast akin to bands like Cheap Trick and The Replacements.
“Redtail Hawks” couples that same energy with a bit of straight vintage swagger reminiscent of T. Rex, and handclaps directly inspired by Motown records.
The vocal harmonies that have become part of the Stick Arounds signature sound are immediately apparent on “Easy To Take”, as is the Byrdsian guitar approach that harkens back to some of the band’s favorite classic country records and early country rock. Gram Parsons would have loved this.
Simultaneously a call for help and call to arms, “Ode To Kid Marine” is an open love letter to drowning your sorrows in a few beers and a favorite record. Named for a terrific solo Bob Pollard record, this track epitomizes the glory and inherent regret in blasting an album and drinking to make it through the night.
Four tight and taut songs make up this ten minute trip rooted deeply in harmony, threadbare honesty, and the enduring power of rock and roll.
We’re very excited to be hosting This Must Be The Place: Quality Hits From Lansing, a new 24 track compilation of Lansing-area artists performing some of their favorite covers, a project that was spearheaded by acclaimed music writer Rich Tupica (of the definitive Big Star book There Was A Light fame). Lots of old friends here! It’s a little glimpse into what us creative types have been up to with a year of no shows. From the GTG family we’ve got The Plurals, Cavalcade, The Wild Honey Collective, RK Andrews (No Skull/Red Teeth), Counterpunchers (members of Narc Out The Reds), The Stick Arounds, Isaac Richmond Vander Schuur (The Hat Madder), Jennifer Toms (Scary Women), and Disappointed Dad, plus lots of old friends throughout like Crystal Drive, Frontier Ruckus, Dylan Rogers, Rodeo Boys, Nonbinary, La La Delivery and plenty more! 24 tracks! Free download!
Here’s what Rich had to say about the project:
“This Must Be the Place: Quality Hits from Lansing is a totally free download of Lansing, Michigan bands performing select songs by artists they love. This is meant to serve as a fun stop-gap between now and the (eventual) return of live shows. So, please: Listen. Download. Repeat. There’s a wide range of covers here because each band/artist chose whichever song they wanted for this collection. The reason? Every band has a good cover in them—perhaps one they’ve always wanted to tackle, but never had a proper reason to. So, the “art of the cover” was fully realized here. With no limitations, it left the tracklist up to them and it made for a bizarre, yet somehow cohesive blend of genres.
Aside from a long roster of area fixtures Like Frontier Ruckus, Cavalcade, Rodeo Boys, The Plurals, Wally Pleasant (and many more!), there’s also new solo tracks and fresh side projects featured here from Lansing vets: RK Andrews (of No Skull, Red Teeth), Jennifer Toms (of Scary Women), Counterpunchers (members of Narc Out the Reds), Dylan Rogers (L.U.V.S), Isaac Richmond Vander Schuur (The Hat Madder), Seth + Modern Sadness (features Seth Rentfrow of Way to Fall, Kyle Daniel), Myron James (Edible Intention), and The Wild Honey Collective (a new GTG super group). Scroll through the selection, and you’ll see plenty of familiar names. Enjoy!”
Holy smokes, has it been a year?!?? Just over a year ago as the stay-at-home order was issued in Michigan we started doing daily videos of GTG family and friends in quarantine. Weird times, but the solidarity experienced was a pretty awesome thing to take in, though we’re not quite ready to start getting pandemic nostalgia. Here’s a playlist of Staying Home With GTG Records from spring 2020, and there are a few more on the GTG facebook that never got uploaded to youtube. Glad we’re all still here!
Mark your calendars, we’ve got a rager planned for Best Friends Club kinda sorta in honor of Tim Hoh on March 26th! Super stoked to have Joe Jack Talcum of Dead Milkmen joining us for a livestream, as well as Marc from Mad Anthony, Midwest Bonsai, Nikki Nailbomb, Dale J Gordon, and Tim the man himself! Streaming at 9 PM, Friday 3/26 at bestfriendsclub.us!
Today (March 5, 2021) – as part of Bandcamp Friday – we’re plugging a release to benefit the staff of Michigan music venue Mac’s Bar who have all been laid-off for just shy of a year due to COVID-19. One of these staff members happens to be my partner (and I’ve worked there on and off as a sound tech for several years as well) so I can say with direct experience that we were all expecting a fairly lucrative year for live music and had the rug pulled out unexpectedly with no safety net. Prior to last year serving and contract work within the music industry was actually always a pretty safe bet for employment, especially for those of my persuasion that leave town for extended periods to tour, etc. Long story short-ish, we all want to be able to play the stages of independent music venues and have our industry folks be able to come back, so a great roster of bands donated songs, including our own The Wild Honey Collective (lead singin’ by one of these laid-off Mac’s bartenders), Cavalcade, The Plurals, Pancho Villa’s Skull, Rodeo Boys, Flatfoot, Foxgrave, Grey Matter, The Lippies, Heartsick, Silktail, Dogleg and many more, totaling 24 tracks! We’re suggesting a $10 donation but any little bit helps.
Friday February 12 at 9 PM EST we’ll be hosting a Valentine’s Day streaming event at bestfriendsclub.us with When Particles Collide, Tim Hoh, Matt Witte, The Wild Honey Collective and more! The show is free to watch but you’ve gotta sign up to chat. Party party!
Friday February 5 – tonight! – 9 PM EST, The Wild Honey Collective streams a set at the Best Friends Club facebook group with special guest Patty PerShayla! Join the group, join the party, and party on!
This is an eleven song slab of the kind of righteous rock and roll that we all desperately need right now. Great riffs, catchy choruses, simultaneously slacker-y and polished, hints of Americana, Cheap Trick moments, Lemonheads echoes, literal references to both Minutemen and Big Star… sign me up! Pick up the record, pore over the notes, and memorize these songs cuz as soon as it’s safe these guys are gonna be on the road to save rock and roll, again! Check out the lyric video with behind-the-scenes footage for lead single “Dead Ringer” below!
Here’s a cool one for 2021! San Diego punks Slow Draw came together in the last year (including a performance for one of our Best Friends Club livestreams) with some great singles. For their latest single (and the first to truly be a full band effort) “Pessimist/ Glorious” we’ve joined up with the Bad Copy, Paper Street Cuts, and Rizkan Records to release an animated flexi disc of gloomy melodic punk. Animated flexi? That means you need to look at it through a camera and there’s melting skulls ‘n stuff! Sweet! Most importantly, the music is good, with Phil’s Pick’s saying “The melancholy vibe makes for an interesting contrast to the song’s catchy musical arrangement” and Punk Rock Theory succinctly stating: “Nine minutes. Two songs. One hell of an introduction.” Phrases like “gorgeous backup vocals” and “slick guitar leads” reinforce these positive words, and they’re dead-on! Stream it and order a flexi here.