The Frequency · Live Music Venue · Madison, Wisconsin

TRUE ENDEAVORS presents FROG EYES w/ Pearly Gate Music, Worrier
June 11, 10:00 PM
Ages: 21+

$10 adv and dos BUY TICKETS ONLINE

TRUE ENDEAVORS presents FROG EYES w/ Pearly Gate Music, Worrier

TRUE ENDEAVORS presents FROG EYES w/ Pearly Gate Music, Worrier

☆ Opening act(s): Pearly Gate Music, Worrier

Three years in the making, Paul's Tomb: A Triumph marks Frog Eyes' thunderous, frantic, fiery return. This is a slow-brewed masterpiece that is unmistakably Frog Eyes, a new album that was very much worth the wait. On this point we feel unassailable: Frog Eyes keeps getting better and better.

This is an album with weight. It's wrapped in a gauze of fuzz, but a fuzz that's neither yesteryear nor painfully now. Paul's Tomb: A Triumph is neither overly modern nor awkwardly vintage, and it contains a depth and bombast that's not only noticeably absent in Frog Eyes' previous work, it's absent from most contemporary music.

Frog Eyes are equally informed by Scott Walker and Roxy Music, Nuggets collections and the Everly Brothers. But in truth, Frog Eyes' recordings sound like nothing else but Frog Eyes. In the past the band has lived in a no-man's-land reserved for musical anomalies, making music championed by discerning critics and discerning artists (fans of Mercer's songwriting have included, at one time or another, John Darnielle, Spencer Krug, Dan Bejar, Jonathan Meiburg, and Carl Newman, to name a few). With due respect to the above, the scope and vision of Paul's Tomb: A Triumph is triumphant because it busts so thoroughly out of the ghetto of the clever.

It gets there, in part, because all of the basic tracks on Paul's Tomb: A Triumph, including many of the vocals, were recorded live off the floor, and this approach has captured a rawness, a punk rock spirit too often smothered by Pro Tools. Singer/guitarist Carey Mercer's instantly recognizable howl is ever-present, soaring above the frenetic beats of drummer Melanie Campbell. Paul's Tomb: A Triumph is in the canon of "two-guitar" records: the majestic shredding between Mercer and Ryan Beattie recalls everything from Neil Young/Danny Whitten's work on early Young recordings to Tom Verlaine and even, occasionally, Hendrix. The synths weave in and out of this buzzing wall of sound, and new Frog Eyes member Megan Boddy's sweet backing vocals are a kind foil for Mercer's wail. Mercer's lyrics are a continuing refinement of warnings and prophecies, threats and terrors, and what he calls "contrapuntal sharp blasts of hope." As Carl Wilson of Pitchfork put it in his [glowing] review of their 2007 album Tears of the Valedictorian, "[Frontman Carey] Mercer stands in the lineage of rock frontman as half-carnival-barker, half-gnostic-preacher that Greil Marcus describes as the 'crank prophet,' from Screamin' Jay Hawkins through Arthur Lee of Love, Captain Beefheart, David Thomas of Pere Ubu, Tom Waits, and the Pixies' Frank Black." Paul's Tomb: A Triumph is Mercer--and Frog Eyes--at their most powerful and self-assured.


Pearly Gate Music is Zach Tillman. Zach Tillman is from Maryland, but now he lives in Seattle. After high school and nearly a decade of trying to be a decent, hard-working proletariat ("for goodness' sake", Zach’s dad might say) he's taken up permanent residency on deadbeat street. And what better way to spend time there than home recording? And since there's too much music on this planet anyway, he's figured what's the hurt in making a little more. He's bought a Casio keyboard and eats food and sings songs into his laptop. Sometimes he even plays acoustic guitar!

In 2009, Zach was offered a junior songwriting position at local deadbeat record label Barsuk Records. The stars aligned! Money for nothing and my chicks for free! See dad, I told you I could make it!

But wait, here come my deadbeat friends!

"Oh, hello, deadbeat friends! Want to head over to Kory’s and make an album? We can eat pizza there!"

"Sounds great!" says Josh. "I’ll bring some drums!"

"I don't know," says Joe. "Can I use my beautiful Fender Precision bass guitar?"

"Of course you can!"

"Well then, ok! Let’s do it!"

"What about me?" Colin interjects from the couch.

"Oh, I thought you were sleeping. And I only thought that because you are such a deadbeat. But, c'mon! Grab your guitar and let's go!"

Recording at Kory’s proved to be fruitful. Fruitful in a deadbeat, "good enough" kind of way which is just fine for Zach ("you'll never make it with that kind of attitude" sheesh...), who really likes that fuzzy, non-deliberate kind of sound played so loud your eardrums scream. The record turned out like a quilt. A quilt made by Zach who doesn't know the first thing about quilting. But aren't those the best kinds?

Please answer with a short essay here. Don’t forget to cite your references and please be specific:

This is Pearly Gate Music; bedroom and garage music. Only listen to Pearly Gate Music with headphones. And at a volume that is sure to get those holy rings a-blastin'. Really, Zach just hopes Steve Malkmus might hear this somehow and smile down from his great sofa in the sky. And to have everything finally make sense.

"I’m not dead," says Steve Malkmus. "And this stuff is terrible."

"I love you too, Steve. I love you too."

$10 adv and dos BUY TICKETS ONLINE

Ages: 21+

TRUE ENDEAVORS presents FROG EYES w/ Pearly Gate Music, Worrier web site