Wednesday, August 20, 2008

“The new Sleater-Kinney?” Brooklyn’s radical Jewish queercore quartet The Shondes takes to the road...

The Shondes, a Brooklyn, NY quartet taking its name from the Yiddish word for ”shame” or ”disgrace” earned considerable praise (contrary to the group’s self-deprecating moniker) this year for its debut album, The Red Sea.

The disc produced by Pere Ubu bassist and producer Tony Maimone (They Might Be Giants, Book of Knots) often inspired critics to praise The Shondes as “the new Sleater-Kinney.” Due to the debut’s success, the quartet will once again take to the road this Fall for a rigorous two-month trek throughout the U.S. See below for complete dates.

SPIN Magazine featured The Shondes as its Artist of The Day (LINK), while the band’s NYC album release party was glowingly reviewed by CMJ (LINK). New York Press featured The Shondes in an in-depth article (LINK). Likewise, many other reputable outlets showcased the band earlier this year.

The Shondes’ dramatic rock has been compared to Sleater-Kinney, Patti Smith and The Raincoats, due to the group’s clever merging of classical music, traditional Jewish folk and punk rock into a compelling whole. The Shondes -- Temim Fruchter (drums/vocals), Louisa Solomon (bass/vocals), Ian Brannigan (guitar) and Elijah Oberman (violin/vocals) -- quickly gained popularity in its native city thanks to its complex melodic song structures combined with rich, intertwined vocals. Despite the apparent fixation on an erroneous quantifier relating to the band members’ identities (falsely describing the band as “3/4 transgender,” perhaps because it makes a catchy press hook when paired with the factually correct “3/4 Jewish”), The Shondes has been receiving acclaim for its seamless fusion of fierce political conviction and serious musicianship. “We’re proud to continue the tradition of political, queer and feminist punk,” says drummer Fruchter.

The Shondes’ songwriting fuses the various musical traditions of feminist punk, classical, Jewish and queercore, while the band’s vocal melodies move effortlessly from anthemic to haunting -- textured by the distinct qualities of each of their voices. The result is a unique sound that is both heartbreaking and hopeful. The high energy of its live shows brings audiences along for the ride, with audience members often singing along and swaying to the punchy rhythms and soaring melodies.

From its formation, The Shondes has maintained a rigorous tour schedule including two national tours, a midwest mini-tour, regular east coast dates, and festivals such as North by Northeast and Homo A Go Go. The group has shared the stage with indie luminaries Electrelane, Erase Errata, Amy Ray, Mecca Normal, Joe Lally (Fugazi) and Lesbians On Ecstasy, among others. The band also organizes events, often in partnership with local activist organizations, such as the Jews Against the Occupation Chanukah Ball and the Sylvia Rivera Law Project’s Valentine’s Day Party.

Quotes From The Press:
“...a band bent on putting politics back in punk. Just a year out from their union in college, the foursome caught the crest of a foamy blogger-hype wave without so much as a single pressed.“ – SPIN

“Are The Shondes the next Sleater-Kinney?” – VH1 Best Week Ever Blog

“Seamlessly fusing art and politics.” – Punk Planet

“Hard-driving, politically savvy rock 'n roll.” – Flavorpill

“A delightful disgrace, stirring up buzz without an album or a label.” – Venus Zine

“Riot grrrl radicalism wed to classically structured songs.” – The Village Voice

“A powerful new sound.” – Heeb Magazine

“A frenzy of violins, surfy guitar leads, and punctuated group vocals blend together to make… catchy and compelling tunes. Add some complex harmonies, abrupt time changes, and eastern European sounding scales to the mix and you've get a truly unique sound.” – The Deli

The Shondes go all out for audiences with their swift musical assault and onstage antics.” – Austinist

“ album rich in saw-tooth guitars, pummeling rhythms and an undeniably anthemic spirit. It’s haunting and it’s eerie, yet it’s rousing. The Shondes are a twisted carnival film noir come true.” – CMJ

The Shondes On Tour:
08/28 Washington, DC @ The Black Cat
08/29 Philadelphia, PA @ Tritone
08/30 Morgantown, WV @ 424 Clark Street
08/31 Pittsburgh, PA @ Garfield Artworks
09/03 Ann Arbor, MI @ TC’s Speakeasy
09/04 Lexington, KY @ The Void
09/05 Louisville, KY @ Headliners
09/06 Milwaukee, WI @ Mad Planet
09/07 St. Louis, MO @ The Off Broadway
09/10 Chicago, IL @ The Bottom Lounge
09/11 Des Moines, IA @ Vaueville Mews
09/13 Iowa City, IA @ The Picador
09/14 Minneapolis, MN @ The Triple Rock
09/17 Eugene, OR @ TBA
09/18 Portland, OR @ The Town Lounge
09/19 Seattle, WA @ The High Dive
09/20 Olympia, WA @ The Track House
09/24 San Francisco, CA @ Hotel Utah
09/25 Los Angeles, CA @ The Silverlake Lounge
09/27 Santa Barbara, CA @ TBA
10/01 Tuscon, AZ @ TBA
10/03 Santa Fe, NM @ TBA
10/05 Austin, TX @ Emo’s
10/08 New Orleans, LA @ The Dragon’s Den
10/10 Athens, GA @ Little Kings Shuffle Club
10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Wonderroot
10/12 Birmingham, AL @ TBA
10/16 Miami, FL @ Churchill’s
10/18 Chapel Hill, NC @ The Nightlite
10/23 New York, NY @ Knitting Factory Fanatic CMJ Day Party
10/31 Portland, ME @ Geno’s

The Red Sea Album Tracklisting:
Stream The Album HERE
01. Don’t Look Down (MP3)
02. Your Monster
03. Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow (MP3)
04. Winter
05. Let’s Go (MP3)
06. I Watched The Temple Fall
07. At The Water
08. What Love Is
09. The Mother and The Colony
10. Don’t Whisper
11. The Start of Everything

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