by Ian Chainey
If Tweak Bird operate under one principle, it's fun. The Illinois-transplanted Los Angeleno guitar n' drums duo doesn't think music should be taken too seriously, so, instead, they offer seriously fun music. Yet, lest you think their tunes are tossed off, treated with the same irreverence as seeds and stems, know that their easygoing, whatever-ness belies a whip-smart wit and canny understanding of earworm melodies; just baked within thick, stoner distortion and sprinkled with occasional Nuggets when they've had too much to dream.
After an assist in the beginning from Dale Crover of their past tourmates the Melvins, Caleb and Ashton have cut together quite a collection of releases, with the anticipated Any Ol' Way available today (5/20) via Let's Pretend Records. Then, starting May 24, the two will tour, making a round-trip through the US on a month-long trek. On June 12, the Birds will roost at Death by Audio in NYC. Prepare to be pleasantly deafened. All dates are listed below.
So, to help ring in the new addition to their discography, they're also contributing a non-album track, "Upside Down Frankenstein," to a new installment of the Scion AV Rock Show singles series. Tweak Bird inhabits the B-side with the Melvins' King Buzzo (who also has a new album coming) occupying the A, thus commemorating the Scion-presented show the pair played together in LA this past February. In typical Tweaked fashion, "Frankenstein" starts shambling along with heavy, lazy drums; like Brant Bjork taking it easy on a Sunday morning. A thudding chord progression enters, teases some grit, then makes the bed for a close vocal harmony in the manner of the Everly Brothers. . .if gifted a vaporizer. A chorus of the three-word title is given a couple go arounds before the brothers bring the track to a close with a world-swallowing amount of Brian Wilson reverb. Similar to that smiler, it's just fun. And, well, it's on-the-surface simplistic, but there's a certain craftsmanship present. The rough edges have been sanded down by consideration; from the Shel Silverstein-esque, mouth-pleasing nonsense refrain, to the hints something bigger is lurking in the shadows.
A stream of "Upside Down Frankenstein" makes its premiere in this post. Listen to that, along with Buzzo's contribution to the split and the list of all Tweak Bird dates, below...
Tweak Bird - "Upside Down Frankenstein"
King Buzzo - "The Hesitation Twist"
Tweak Bird -- 2014 Tour Dates
May 24 - The Cellar Door - Visalia, CA
May 25 - The Night Life - Oakland, CA
May 27 - The Holland Project - Reno, NV
May 29 - Bunk Bar - Portland, OR
May 30 - Volume Fest - Spokane, WA
May 31 - Highline - Seattle, WA
Jun 01 - The Crux - Boise, ID
Jun 02 - Kilby Court - Salt Lake City, UT
Jun 03 - Hi-Dive - Denver, CO
Jun 05 - The Riot Room - Kansas City, MO
Jun 06 - Beat Kitchen - Chicago, IL
Jun 07 - Hangar 9 - Carbondale, IL
Jun 08 - PJ's Lager House - Detroit, MI
Jun 09 - Grog Shop - Cleveland, OH
Jun 10 - Smiling Moose - Pittsburgh, PA
Jun 11 - Ortlieb's - Philadelphia, PA
Jun 12 - Death By Audio - Brooklyn, NY
Jun 14 - Strange Matter - Richmond, VA
Jun 15 - The Milestone Club - Charlotte, NC
Jun 16 - 529 - Atlanta, GA
Jun 17 - Bottletree Cafe - Birmingham, AL
Jun 19 - Three Links - Dallas, TX
Jun 22 - Trainyard - Las Cruces, NM
Jun 23 - Yucca Tap Room - Tempe, AZ
Jun 24 - Soda Bar - San Diego, CA
Jun 27 - The Church on York - Los Angeles, CA