Returning to the Bottle for their first show here since opening for MAC DEMARCO at last Summer's Pitchfork After Party are Memphis punks EX-CULT, a band we've come to know and love since we came across their debut record in 2012. Released on the esteemed Goner Records and produced by eventual tour partner TY SEGALL, that album was one of the best, most under-appreciated punk releases of the year and you can bet your ass they've outdone themselves with their second LP, Midnight Passenger, out April 29th on Goner. Formerly known as SEX CULT, this seasoned five-piece play ripping punk rock like none other, incorporating angular post-punk, flying saucer fuzz guitar, layers of psychedelic slime and snotty vocals with a bash-your-head-in energy that needs to be seen live to be believed.
Chicago noise-punks RUNNING are a band that give very few fucks (if any fucks at all). Their second full length LP, Asshole Savant, released last year via Captcha, is a mess of reverbed-to-heck vocals, pummeling drum and bass, and abrasive, feedback-heavy guitar. RUNNING caught the ears of JOHN DWYER, hunky frontman of THEE OH SEES, and his own Castle Face Records put out the band's third record, Vaguely Ethnic, at the end of last summer. The LP continues RUNNING's path of destruction in and around Chicago, shriveling the tits and testicles of any sniveling boners who try to stand in their way. The trio has a brand spanking new 7-inch out, courtesy of the fine folks at Drag City. Pick it up tonight or at one of your local record stores.
Local Freak-punk duo EARRING return to the Bottle tonight to open this punk explosion and they've been creating quite a stir around the city the past few months. Luca from the Chicago Reader selected them as one of the Top Chicago Bands of 2013, saying "Their lean, simple pop hooks, blasted through a tower of warm guitar amps and drenched in a droney, melancholy vibe, make for the year's prettiest, most irresistible collection of songs from a young local band." Included in Luca's list were some other local favorites DISAPPEARS and OOZING WOUND, so these fellas are in damn fine company.
Memphis' Ex-Cult are one of the most exciting punk bands in the US. Their latest record Midnight Passenger
is the result of a never ending obsession with the open road.
While touring with the likes of Ty Segall and the OBN III's, Ex-Cult perfected their own brand of psych tinged
proto-punk, helmed by wild eyed, sneering frontman Chris Shaw. Pitchfork: Advance streamed the band's latest LP
"Midnight Passenger" noting, "The production opens up the band's sound exponentially.
Nothing's remotely muffled, so the guitars jump out a little faster, and Shaw's voice is given more of a spotlight.
" You can check out Ex-Cult's Ty Segall produced Record Store Day version of "Ties You Up" on Pitchfork here!
Ex-Cult Stream "Midnight Passenger" LP
On Pitchfork Advance
Out April 29th On Goner Records
On Tour This Spring
05-02 Memphis, TX - Hi-Tone *
05-16 Nashville, TN - The End
05-17 Atlanta, GA - 529
05-18 Durham, NC - The Pinhook
05-19 Richmond, VA - Strange Matter
05-20 Washington, DC - DC 9
05-21 Philadelphia, PA - Black Box
05-22 New York, NY - Mercury Lounge ^
05-24 Beacon, NY - Quinns
05-26 Cambridge, MA - Middle East Upstairs
05-28 Cleveland, OH - Happy Dog 05-29 Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle #
05-30 Iowa City, IA - Firecracker 500 Festival
* w/ Sector Zero and Gimp Teeth
^ w/ Pampers
# w/ Running
Praise For Ex-Cult:
"'The album suddenly feels vital and electric" --Pitchfork
"Not A Threat” is also crisp and streamlined, its guitar tracks locking into mechanical combustion fits while Chris Shaw barks with swaggering unhinged authority" --Stereogum
"It's all about the live show, and, without a doubt, Ex-Cult has that blindfolded, on one-leg and with their arms tied behind them." --NOISEY
"[Midnight Passenger's] title track, a relentless mix of propeller-chop guitar, churning noise-rock squall, and monotone taunts.” – SPIN
“Singer Chris Shaw is a classic punk frontman, wild-eyed and always on the edge" --Brooklyn Vegan
“Memphis punk outfit Ex-Cult is twisting the genre into new shapes on their self-titled debut.” – MTV Hive
Ex-Cult's Midnight Passenger is the result of a never ending obsession with the open road. It's the sound of five people spending the last year in countless dive bars, disgusting motel rooms and on dozens of dirty floors. Since recording with Ty Segall in 2012 the band hasn't come up for air, putting four US tours and tons of weekend trips under their belt with the likes of OBN III's, Captive and Ty Segall.
It was in these dive bars across the USA that Ex-Cult truly found their sound. While some of the songs were played for audiences as early as January of 2013, it wasn't until a West Coast tour in June that the blue print for Midnight Passenger really started to take form. Taking pieces of every tour back home with them, the band began to hone a sound that captured the desperation of the first record, while being careful to integrate new techniques of negative noise.
Recorded by Doug Easley in January of 2014, Midnight Passenger is comprised of ten songs that were meant to be heard together, each one following a different, damaged storyline. The buzz-saw guitars, kraut rock rhythm section and sneering vocals are all still present, but with Midnight Passenger, Ex-Cult has added a few layers of psychedelic slime to their sound.