Archive for the ‘Bands We Like’ Category

The 1990s Return To Binghamton This Saturday With Weezer Tributes

August 6, 2011

Clean cut mods playing for girls in the “Happy Days” universe. Dogs running through a blue studio backdrop while singers wear bowl cuts and “nerd” glasses. High school bands rocking out safely in their parents’ garages while their moms do laundry.

What do these things have in common? They were all settings for Weezer videos in the mid-1990s.

This Saturday, August 13, several prominent local musicians will help you relive these memories as “In The Garage” and “Wee(d)zer” pay tribute to Weezer at Fitzie’s Irish Pub at 9 Main Street in Binghamton.

“So many memories,” says Bijoy Datta, one of the local artists who will be churning out Weezer tunes on Saturday. “There’s something really honest and really basic about Weezer. That’s the reason I – and so many people – connected to their music. It’s going to be an awesome time bringing that back for so many fans.”

Datta and his bandmates know a thing or two about helping the local music scene relive great memories. He, along with Kevin Kober, Mike Escott and Steve Askew drew hundreds of fans as “A Trillion Lives” in March for their Abalienation tribute show at Fitzie’s. Several members of Abalienation even showed up to say a few words and play songs with the band at that show.

Opening the show will be “In The Garage” featuring Datta on bass and vocals, Bob Aiken on guitar and vocals, Escott on guitar and Askew on drums. They’ll be playing Weezer’s full 1994 debut album, affectionately known by millions of fans as “The Blue Album”, while another group of locals will follow with a full set of Weezer’s 1996 album “Pinkerton”.

Pinkerton was initially considered a commercial and critical failure but, over the last 15 years, has become widely considered one of the best rock albums of the 1990s (by Rolling Stone, Spin and many other publications). Twin threats Louis and Andy Smith on drums and bass/vocals, along with Adam Southard on guitar/keyboard/vocals, Tom Doud on guitar and Aiken on guitar/vocals, round out Wee(d)zer.

“I hope we can deliver one of the members of Weezer at Saturday’s show like we did with Abalienation in March,” added Datta. “It’s probably a longshot but I did send Rivers Cuomo (Weezer’s frontman, guitarist and creative force) a couple of Twitter messages inviting him so you never know.”

The show will begin around 10 PM with “In The Garage” playing first followed by “Wee(d)zer”. Tickets will be available at the door for $5.

For more information or to view sneak previews of the bands, search “A Night Of Weezer” on Facebook or visit


Half of Swath “In The Garage” For Upcoming Weezer Tribute

July 20, 2011

It’s been a long time since our last post here on Swathblog since Swath is still on hiatus. However, a few of us have remained busy, with Kevin and Bijoy being joined by Dance-A-Tron‘s Steve and Mike for the super successful Abalienation Tribute Show in March.

Now Bijoy and Bob are teaming up with Steve and Mike as “In The Garage” for a one-night-only complete performance of Weezer’s Blue Album. Some fellow enthusiasts will be joining them as Wee(d)zer to play all of Pinkerton as well.

The show is Saturday, August 13, starting at 9 PM at Fitzie’s Irish Pub on Main Street in Binghamton.

There will probably be one more band but that isn’t finalized yet.

Here’s a sneak preview from last Sunday’s practice.

More Sneak Peeks at the Abalienation Tribute Band – Show is on 3/25

March 4, 2011

A Taste of our Abalienation Tribute, “A Trillion Lives”

March 3, 2011

Tonight’s practice gives you a little taste of our Abalienation Tribute Band, “A Trillion Lives”, which will be playing a one-night-only show on 3/25/11 at Fitzie’s Irish Pub in Binghamton.


As Mike Dickinson…Kevin Kober (spent the last 15 years in: The Martians, The Skylarks, a Satellite Crash, All Immune, Swath, Dance-A-Tron);

As Mark Dickinson…Mike Escott (spent the last 15 years in: 607, Dance-A-Tron [and touring all over the country with national acts]);

As Big Jim…Bijoy Datta (spent the last 15 years in: …Stick…, a Satellite Crash, All Immune, Swath); and

As Louie Short (and Many Other Drummers That Followed)…Steve Askew (spent the last 10 years in: All Immune, Dance-A-Tron).

The Swath Hiatus and Abalienation Tribute Band

March 2, 2011

It’s been months and months since our last post to the blog here so I wanted to put up a quick post to update where we’re at.

Swath has been on a hiatus for the last six months or so with Dan getting married and off on his honeymoon last fall and some other personal commitments taking up a lot of time for the rest of us.

We’re still planning to get things back together at some point to get practicing, play more shows and record more.

In the meantime, Kevin and I are playing in a one-show only band called “A Trillion Lives”, which is a tribute band to legendary Binghamton punks Abalienation. Kevin is emulating Mike Dickinson on vocals while Bijoy is doing his best to play a large white man for his bassist impression of Big Jim. Steve Askew and Mike Escott from Dance-A-Tron round out the lineup on drums and guitar, respectively.

They’ll be bringing the old school chaos and rock on Friday, March 25, at Fitzie’s Irish Pub in Binghamton. It will be an event not to be missed if you were at all in the Binghamton music scene from the late 1980s to around 2000. Mark Dickinson’s current band, The Others, will also be on the bill and rumor has it that other Abalienation members may just show up….

Featured on FarPastPost Web Radio/Podcast

December 18, 2009

We’ve recently been featured on the awesome FarPastPost web radio show/podcast.

Please check out the site and station and support them by downloading it, fanning them on Facebook and reading their blog.

They play a lot of cool music from bands like Pelican, Cult of Luna, Sigur Ros, Bardo Pond, and dozens and dozens of others. Very cool way to discover new bands in this genre.

Last Night’s Show In Ithaca/Junius Is Amazing

October 11, 2009

We played last night at The Haunt in Ithaca, courtesy of the always cool Ithaca Underground (thanks Bubba!).

Unfortunately, Rosetta had to cancel at the last minute so they didn’t play.

But, after our set which started up the festivities, we were treated to the awesome-ness of Junius. These four excellent musicians are from Boston and will be embarking on their third tour of Europe on Tuesday.

Junius brought amazing big rock to the Haunt last night.

Junius brought amazing big rock to the Haunt last night.

We highly recommend them. It reminded me a lot of early 2000s Cave In, with heavy riffs, great melodies, and soaring vocals. So, yeah, go buy some Junius.

One other cool thing they had going on was an integrated light show that the two guitar players and bass player controlled through footswitches. We’re stealing that idea ASAP.

(On a side note, kudos to the sound guy at the Haunt. I don’t know what we sounded like since I was in stage, but the sound quality for Junius was incredible.)

Back From Nashville

January 27, 2009


I’m back from Nashville.

Just a quick post today to give props to Phil Hummer and the White Falcons, who I saw rock the house at Robert’s Western World on Broadway on Tuesday night.

Great band with tons of talent, charisma and style.

The Thorns of Life!

January 13, 2009

Anyone who knows me well knows that two of my favorite bands of all time are Jawbreaker and Jets to Brazil, which obviously means that one of favorite songwriters of all time is Blake Schwartzenbach.

So, with that in mind, you can only imagine my glee when I read the below article from Alternative Press that my friend, Ja from Atlanta, emailed it to me this morning.

I can’t believe I’m only finding out about this two months after the fact….

(click on the link below the article to see some videos of the new band, The Thorns of Life, that Alternative Press has compiled.)


Posted by Scott Heisel on 15-Nov-08 @ 02:03 AM

UPDATE: There are now multiple live videos of the show below.

The Thorns Of Life played their second show ever earlier tonight at a party in Brooklyn at a house that looked straight out of 1982: worn, dog-eared books lined the high shelf bordered along the walls of the room while the wallpaper cracked, and various flyers hung from corners with images of Ronald Reagan on them. The living room couldn’t have been more than 18′ x 15′ x 12′.

I couldn’t think of a better place to see the newest band from Blake Schwarzenbach and Aaron Cometbus.

Schwarzenbach is essentially a punk legend for his stints in Jawbreaker and Jets To Brazil while Cometbus has practically attained the same level for helping establish the East Bay scene in a variety of bands like Crimpshrine and Pinhead Gunpowder, as well as his long-running Cometbus zine.

Here, they teamed up with Daniela Sea, from Showtime’s “The L Word,” on bass, as previously reported.

When my friend and I paid our $5 cover and walked in a little after 8:00, there couldn’t have been more than 40 people spread around the house and backyard. This struck us in a weird way considering the news had been all over the Internet since early that day.

By 9:10, when the band began setting up to open the show, the room became more and more crowded until it became a dense mess of people all hoping to cop a glimpse of what’ll probably be “the” punk rock buzz band in the months to come.

Without a word to the crowd, the band ripped into song number one, treating us to the patented uptempo, three-chord East Bay punk sound. It’s clear Schwarzenbach hasn’t forgotten about his past: There are definitely elements of the Bay sound as well as Jawbreaker and JTB mixed in–and one of the songs was described by him as “losing your virginity in 11th grade in Santa Monica, California…to the right one.”

Another song was purported as a fairytale with a healthy amount of mythology–no shocker considering Blake’s love of literature.

Musically, there was a certain temper about the band even as they chugged through songs that tended to be basic punk rock romps with subtle dynamic changes. There were plenty of little ‘breaker-esque jam-outs too, though most of them were teasingly truncated. The sixth or seventh song even bore a structure resembling “Fine Day.”

Though Schwarzenbach could just barely be heard over the instruments, his voice definitely sounds different. It vaguely seems a little smoother and less rugged somehow, but retaining that certain bite and snarl that the Dear You / Orange Rhyming Dictionary era had.

Cometbus was quite reliable on the kit, but that was to be expected. Him and Sea held the rhythm down perfectly, which was needed considering the consistent pace things seemed to go at.

Obviously, the crowd was receptive. All along the first few rows closest to the band, some bounced around in typical house show bliss while others calmly looked on with a more focused awe.

With little banter to the crowd, the nine-song set suddenly finished and the room flushed out, though a few other bands (Vivian Girls, Stupid Party and one other I believe) were still raring to play for a crowd.

Asked if a demo or 7″ was planned, Schwarzenbach merely replied he didn’t know.

I guess we’ll have to settle on the copious amounts of video and photo one can only hope will begin flooding in this weekend. –Brian Shultz

Click here and go to the bottom of the page for videos of The Thorns of Life compiled on Alternative Press’ website