Charles Latham Record Release!!
The Wigg Report, Curtis Eller
117 W. Main St.
Durham, NC, 27701
Doors 8:00 PM / Show 9:00 PM
Watch & Listen
"Latham's music is passionate with biting wit."--NPR
"One of the sharpest songwriters to emerge of late on the antifolk sphere...Charles Latham could be your new hero."--The Independent Weekly
"3.5 stars out of 5"--Pitchfork
Charles Latham wields an acid tongue and a poison pen, crafting social criticism, tragicomic narratives, and brutal self-analysis into three and a half minute ramshackle folk-pop songs. His songs are often exercises in duality: he finds humor in horror and horror in humor, the profane in beauty and beauty in the profane. In a live performance, his audience often laughs and smiles, but he rarely does. His lo-fi home recordings compliment the harsh honesty of his lyrics; his guitar buzzes and rings, and his snarling voice leaps, cracks and cries. His music is as equally influenced by folk and country as it is by punk, British Invasion-era rock, and Brill Building-style pop.
Originally from Virginia, Charles Latham began playing music professionally while living in Brighton, England as a student. The UK's folk-punk or "antifolk" scene adopted him as one of their own: Latham was the only non-British act to perform at the 2004 Winter Antifolk Fest in London. In 2005, Latham was voted "Best of Sussex" by a panel of judges at the Sussex Battle of the Bands, winning the grand prize.
After returning to the States, Charles Latham completed his first full-length album, "Pretty Mouth" in the spring of 2006; the album is a collection of home recordings captured on an 8-track in various locations in the UK and at his home in Virginia. The album was self-released, and has been met with enthusiastic acclaim in both the US and UK (see Press). Several songs from the album, including "Memorabilia" and "My Perfect Church", have received frequent radio airplay; "Nice (to me)" was featured on NPR. "Boot Hill" is listed as one of the top "Songs of the Times" on Neil Young's Living With War site. A non-album track, "The Internet Sexual Predator Talking Blues", a song about the scandal surrounding ex-Congressman Mark Foley, was given 3.5 out of 5 stars by Pitchfork. “Hard On” has been covered extensively by contemporaries worldwide.
While living in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina, Latham created Antifolk SouthEast, a loose collective of local folk-punk musicians, and co-produced the Antifolk SouthEast Winter Extravaganza 2007, a showcase of musicians in the collective, and the first festival of its kind in the area. The event was a success.
Charles Latham has performed throughout the United States and United Kingdom, including major music festivals such as the Hopscotch Music Festival and yearly winter tours in the UK. After a decade of wandering In the tradition of the wandering troubadour, living in six different cities both in the U.S. and abroad, Charles Latham returned to Durham, NC in late 2014, where he continues to write, record, and perform.
Organ Donor (2003)
Calle Verde EP (2004)
Pretty Mouth (2006)
Live at WXDU (2006)
Legend: The Best of Charles Latham (2008)
Come Clean EP (2009)
Squares (I'm Trying to Get in Shape) Single (2010)
Oil! Single (2010)
Not Gonna Be Down Today (No Depression) Single (2010)
Everybody Else Likes Me (Why Don't You?) Single (2011)
I'm Moving Back to My Parent's House Single (2011)
Third Wheel Single (2011)
Fast Loans (2012)
Next to Nothing Blues Single split 7" w/ King of Hollywood [Withered Hand] (2013)
The Wigg Report
I keep telling myself that uttering The Wigg Report in the same breath with The Pixies, or The Violent Femmes even, would be blasphemy, you can't compare Black Francis and crew to anyone, but the more I hear the whole of their work, the more I have to draw a similar parallel between either one of these bands. It's not so much a "sounds like" comparison, but it's more a feeling I get when their music rushes through my headphones. Stephen Mullaney, Christine Fantini, and Ben Riseling , make up Durham's own, The Wigg Report.
Their music is a wonderful blend of minimal acoustic punk rock, mind blowing horns, electronics, and Mullaney's raw, alcohol soaked vocals. A sound that might be overlooked to a casual listener, but sample the tracks below, or see them live and I guarantee you'll be hooked.
Acoustic guitar, the remains of a drum kit, and a saxophone make up the base...yeah, that's right I said saxophone, but this provides the foundation in which they erect their layered structure of sound. It's an intoxicating ride and the sum of their creation is a sound that brings a unique touch, making The Wigg Report really stand out from the rest of local music.
-- The Perm and Skullet
CURTIS ELLER is New York City's angriest yodelling banjo player. He sings about pigeon racing, performing elephants and Jesus, all of which he has seen with his own eyes. He started his show-business career at the age of seven as a juggler and acrobat in the Hiller Olde Tyme Circus in Detroit, but has since turned to the banjo because that's where the money is. His biggest musical influences are Buster Keaton, Elvis Presley and Abraham Lincoln.
Mr. Eller and his band, The American Circus stubbornly perform and record in New York City. They have appeared at funerals, horse races, burlesque revues and punk rock dumps. Haunted by the ghosts of silent film and wearing a dead man's clothes, Mr. Eller and the band have staggered their way into the hearts of audiences from London and Amsterdam to Los Angeles and Montreal. 2008 promises to see them touring extensively on both sides of the Atlantic ocean.
Along the way, they have shared the stage with strippers, contortionists, glass eaters and folksingers. They play more waltzes than any other band I know of, but nobody ever seems to feel like dancing.
On the lastest American Circus CD "Wirewakers & Assassins" Mr. Eller presents songs about John Wilkes Booth, Joe Louis, Fidel Castro, Jack Ruby and Richard Nixon (as well as the usual tales of Civil War generals and Elvis Presley). As always, sporadic yodeling and some strong language should be expected.
Mr Eller's tune "Alaska" was voted "2003's most Popular" on NPR's All Songs Considered. The music has the unmistakable sound of a pistol being fired in an abandoned salt mine: lonesome and violent.
The bands three previous CD's, "Taking Up Serpents Again" (2004), "Banjo Music for Funerals" (2002), and "1890" (2000), prove The American Circus capable of being recorded magnetically. On them you will here true stories about snake handlers and Coney Island, lies about P.T. Barnum and Amelia Earhart, and all the banjo playing and yodeling anyone can reasonably expect in these dark times.
All of the group's recorded output is available at live performances and online at The American Circus Souvenir Shop. Digital facsimiles of these artifacts can be downloaded from I-Tunes and CD Baby. Confederate currency will no longer be accepted.
Onstage and in the recording studio, The American Circus has attempted to capture the spirit of the Harford Circus Fire of 1944. Although there are sure to be many acts of heroism by performers and crew alike, ultimately it will prove to be the greatest disaster in circus history.
AMERICAN CIRCUS PERFORMERS-Past and Present
Liisa Yonker, Marilee Eitner, Joseph "Joebss" DeJarnette, Chris Moore, Gary Langol, Rima Fand, Gerald Menke, Amy Kohn, Michael Plunkett, Tim Kiah, Elizabeth Walsh, Adam Budofsky