Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Elgin band movin' up? Signed on indie label

NOTE: Freelance writer Jason Duarte books shows in Elgin and Chicago, is part of a band and blogs about the local music scene Wednesdays exclusively on Between the Bylines.

Gruff and throaty, yet melodic punk rock band The Brokedowns made a name for themselves around Elgin and Chicago late last century and have maintained a loyal fan base throughout.

In 1998, the Elgin four-piece released a demo tape followed by a few demo CD-Rs before the band saw its debut full-length release, "Let the Disappointment Begin," on Big Action Records in 2002. Since then, the band's released two more full-lengths and a handful of split 7-inches with other punk rock bands, like The Copyrights, The Arrivals, Turkish Techno and Sass Dragons.

The Brokedowns haven't had a full-length release since 2007's "New Brain For Everyone," but in June, an indie label with a successful catalog based out of Chicago called Red Scare Records decided it would put out the new Brokedowns album and added them to its roster of Teenage Bottlerocket, The Menzingers, The Lillingtons and others.

"There's so much going on right now with the label, and as we all know, these are bleak times for small indies like Red Scare," said label owner Tobias Jeg in a article.

"But when I heard these songs, I just knew I had to make this happen. It reminds me of
Dillinger Four meets Black Flag meets (Naked) Raygun meets F***ed Up. It's thunderous punk rock but with great, stinging melodies and a little bit of fruitiness to make things fun."

Jeg will release the band's fourth full-length, "Species Bender," on Sept. 14.

A sneak peek at the album, upcoming shows, after the jump

On Tuesday, The Brokedowns posted two new songs to its MySpace page from the upcoming album. The songs, "Celebrity Death Panel" and "I'm a Ritual" accumulated over 200 plays in 12 hours. The new Brokedowns tunes are some of the most melodically infectious ones the band's churned out to date.

I am personally very excited for them. Signing to Red Scare is sure to bring them more fans in more places and only open more doors for the group, and after 12 years, I think they're deserving of it.

The "Species Bender" release show is set for 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, at Ronny's (2101 N. California Ave., Chicago) with fellow Elgin-ers, Bust! and The House That Gloria Vanderbilt and Minneapolis' Double Bird. The show is 21+.

-- Jason Duarte, Freelance Writer

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