The Blue Note Presents
Ha Ha Tonka + Someone Still loves You Boris Yeltsin
The House Guests
17 N 9th St
Columbia, MO, 65201-4845
Doors 8:30PM / Show 9:30PM
This event is all ages
Watch & Listen
Ha Ha Tonka
“Never. Never ask for what ought to be offered.” —Daniel Woodrell, Winter’s Bone
There’s a certain wisdom that exists in the hills of the Ozarks. It’s a wisdom that spits out of the mouths of Woodrell’s characters; it’s a wisdom that is found in the lyrics by Woodrell’s fellow West Plains, Missouri natives, Ha Ha Tonka; and it’s a wisdom that’s found on the band’s new full-length LP, Death of a Decade.
“They say that if you don’t change where you’re going / you’re gonna end up right where you’re headed.” —Ha Ha Tonka, “Made Example Of”
Recorded in a 200 year old barn in scenic New Paltz, NY with producer Kevin McMahon (Titus Andronicus, The Felice Brothers, The Walkmen), Death of a Decade began as a stripped down record, rich with warm tones that could only be captured under a 30 foot roof of a barn. “We wanted to make sure we left in all the imperfections of the barn such as the chairs squeaking and the boards creaking”, explains lead singer Brian Roberts. After tracking the songs in this rough hewn setting, the files were shipped to hAUs Studio in Kansas City, MO where The Ryantist mixed and manipulated synthetic sonic threads into this organic tapestry. Death of a Decade is where authentic meets synthetic, acoustic meets electronic, and tradition meets innovation.
Thematically, Death of a Decade is less “story-based” than Ha Ha Tonka’s previous work (which pulled heavily from Missouri history and folklore for its lyrics), with the band now focusing on the transition into manhood—something that doesn’t automatically come once you pass a certain age: “I realize that youth is wasted on the young,” Roberts sings on “Westward Bound,” “Oh, I know that now my wasting days are done.”
However, Roberts says, Death of a Decade is not meant to be a requiem for lost youth, but rather an embrace of the notion that the passage of time is better than the alternative. There you have it again: the wisdom of the Ozarks.
Even if the album’s songs aren’t specifically of the Ozarks, the sound is—still present is the traditional instrumentation (just listen to guitarist Brett Anderson’s arpeggio mandolin lines on “Usual Suspects” and “Made Example Of”), with bassist Lucas Long and drummer Lennon Bone rounding out the rhythm section to stampeding affect. Still present are the spine-tingling four-part gospel harmonies, a signature sound that sets Ha Ha Tonka apart from every other indie band-cum-Southern rock group that seems to be shambling out of the suburban woods these days.
Ultimately, what makes the Ha Ha Tonka brand of Southern rock so special is that it’s authentic, it’s effortless, and it never comes across as forced. They are masters at bringing together the traditional and the modern. They sit at the crossroads of Americana and indie, where Alabama meets Arcade Fire – shakes their hand and takes them out for a drink.
So, back to Woodrell’s Ozarkian wisdom from “Winter’s Bone,” being considered one of the best bands you’ll discover (or rediscover) in 2011 isn’t something Ha Ha Tonka ought need to ask for—it will be offered.
More about HHT: Named after Ha Ha Tonka State Park in their native Missouri, the group’s relentless touring has seen them become one of the most buzzed about young bands in America, appearing at Lollapalooza, Sundance Film Fest, SXSW, CMJ while touring nationally as a headlining act, as well as supporting many great bands such as Old 97s, Murder By Death, Langhorne Slim, Cross Canadian Ragweed, Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yeltsin, Ludo, Meat Puppets and more.
Someone Still loves You Boris Yeltsin
Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin has never been the type of band to write and record only when it's time to release a new album.
Prolific writers with a penchant for recording, the group's constant devotion to the art of songwriting has equipped them with a myriad of material spanning the entire length of their 10 years together.
And now, with three full-length releases to their credit, the members of SSLYBY feel it's time to properly unveil a portion of the songs from their extensive catalog.
The result is Tape Club -- a carefully curated 26-song collection that serves as the culmination of a decade's worth of writing and recording above and beyond what could be included on their previous records and which stands by itself as a truly unique album.
Tape Club documents the story of the band aurally -- beginning with lo-fi home recordings (of the type found on their self-recorded debut Broom) and ending with more polished studio tracks (like those found on the Chris Walla-produced Let It Sway).
For those unfamiliar with SSLYBY, Tape Club serves as an introduction to the evolution of the band's musical vision, while at the same time providing surprises for even the most ardent of fans.
The House Guests
A limited quantity of reserved balcony tables are available by request at our box office or by calling (573) 874 1944. Please note that you must purchase all four tickets at the table for a reservation. IF YOU ARE UNDER THE AGE 21, please be prepared to pay a $2 cash minor surcharge at the door in addition to purchasing a ticket.
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