It was love at first sight.
Newcomer Langton Drive hooked me from their very first shows. They're supposed to be a punk band, but they always made me feel they were something else, and when I heard "509" (written on May 9, the day Obama announced his support for gay marriage), arguably the weirdest song in the San Antonio music scene, they threw me off. The song has a chorus that comes out of nowhere, illogical chords, apparently off-key vocals, but somehow everything works. What the hell was that?
"Yeah, it's a little odd," said guitarist Christine Rebel. "The beginning chords are backwards, and the chorus starts with regular chords and then … they're different."
"Beautiful Mess" is the name of one of the songs included on Langton Drive, the debut CD co-produced by the band and recorded and mixed by Pop Pistol's George Garza and Alex Scheel. But the real beautiful mess is "509" — a song that symbolizes an evolving new band that has enough ammunition and ideas to be considered one of our most promising local acts.
Here they are, the way I see them and the way they see themselves.
Christine Rebel, "The disciplined one"
Powerful right-hand strumming, elegant and unpredictable solos. "All my previous bands have been about two, three power chords or hard-rock solos, and that's fine, but now I wanted to do something different," she said. "I'm always trying to find subtle ways to take the song into a different direction, and I don't ever play the same solo."
Jessie Riot, "The mysterious one"
A reluctant frontwoman. She has the voice of a rough angel, and in every song she offers glimpses of what she could sound like if she would allow herself to explode. Constantly improving with every show. "She's our secret weapon," said Christine. "She's very quiet, very shy, but comes up with melodies and lyrics that blow us away."
Jes DeGeneres, "The smart aleck"
A walking, minimalist metronome that only plays with two strings. "I kid you not," said Christine. "[Jes] learned five or six songs in three hours. She doesn't need a drummer to keep time." Jess: "I don't feel I need to do all this fancy stuff a bassist is supposed to do. I keep it simple."
Ernesto Olivo, "The sensitive one"
What he lacks in sleekness he makes up in power. "In other bands you always have to have this chemistry with the bassist, but because Jes does her own thing I have more freedom to do my thing. I think it works, doesn't it?"
Langton Drive CD release party feat. Last Nighters, Viet-Ruse
9pm Fri, Oct 5
3030 Thousand Oaks, Ste 101