Spissy, ABC Gum
123 S. Walnut St
Bloomington, IN, 47401
Doors 8:30 PM / Show 9:30 PM
This event is 18 and over
Bonny Doon emerged in 2014, its four members pivoting away from their punk origins to create something restrained and steeped in contemplation. Songwriters Bill Lennox and Bobby Colombo expanded their ongoing collaboration to include drummer Jake Kmiecik and bassist Joshua Brooks. From there Bonny Doon took form, developing a sound indebted as much to musical touchstones like Neil Young and the Silver Jews as it was to the emotional landscapes of their always changing hometown of Detroit.
The group recorded what became a self-titled 7” in the summer of 2014, tracked by Fred Thomas in his living room. A tape of 4-track demos, “Classical Days and Jazzy Nights,” followed in 2015, before reenlisting Thomas to record their texturally dense debut LP, which melded their penchant for time-honored songcraft with production heavy on tape-delay and glowing, roomy sonics. The album was released on Salinas in early 2017, as the band was already deep into work on material for a follow-up. Working in a studio for the first time, they captured a more spare and vulnerable sound and signed on with Woodsist to release the resultant album, Longwave.
'Spissy is the rare and obvious duo of Aaron Denton and Ben Lumsdaine. I say "obvious" because they fit together and compliment one another so well, their creative pairing seems almost inevitable. Aaron's ability to craft a delightful, memorable hook alongside Ben's penchant for arrangement, vibe, and skill makes Spissy an absolutely satisfying listen. "Rare", because what draws these two dudes together seems hard to find; a studious, almost aggressive, attraction and ambition toward moderation. That is to say, every piece of this record, even and especially the riskier bits, has been carefully considered and measured. Every synth sound and every rhythm is the right choice. Each unexpected turn and gratifying conclusion hits precisely the right spot.
But don't get me wrong. For every "right choice" that's made, a consequence must be considered. What emotion follows this chord progression, or these lyrics? It's a balancing act. Spissy have tightened themselves down into a niche. They've struck a symmetry between pleasant music and raw expression. And they've hit their mark so accurately, then shown their vulnerabilities so appropriately...it's like they're the Ed Harris' Gene Kranz at the end of Ron Howard's Tom Hanks-starring 1995 space-race masterpiece, Apollo 13 of 2016 indie rock. This record is ambitious, it's considered, and it's meticulous, but - what makes it great - Spissy haven't forgotten that it's also a crap shoot.'
- Mike Adams