Vacationeer, Eastern Souvenirs

Sun ยท April 9, 2017

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 7:30 pm

$10.00 - $12.00

This event is 21 and over

"There's a long, twisty story that comes with this batch of music," singer-songwriter-guitarist Daniel Blue says of the new Motopony EP Idle Beauty, his band's second release and Fast Plastic/ eOne Music debut. "It's kind of all over the place, but I think it reflects where we've been, what we've been through, and what we're in the process of becoming."

Indeed, the Seattle outfit's long and sometimes convoluted journey to its current stature as one of America's hottest and most acclaimed young bands has been an unconventional one. In the TK years since chief visionary Blue first launched it as his creative alter ego, Motopony has evolved through a variety of permutations, into its current form as an expansive sextet whose raw-nerved mix of vivid lyrical explorations, inventive sonic textures and hard-rocking melodic punch mark it as a singularly potent musical force.

Motopony's resonant merging of emotional warmth and hard-hitting assertiveness is prominent throughout Idle Beauty's five sonically diverse yet consistently potent tracks, which range from the infectious, anthemic exhortation of "Get Down (Come Up") to the humanistic uplift of "About A Song" to the intimate immediacy of "Buffalo Medicine" to the epic flight of "She Is Spirit' to the haunting spoken-word excursion of "Breakthru."

Motopony has already achieved considerable national attention, thanks to the surprise success of its self-titled 2011 debut album, which became a grass-roots hit despite its low-key release on the independent Tiny Ogre label. The album sold over 10,000 copies and was embraced by an impressive groundswell of fans, critics and alternative radio stations, which helped to make the infectious tune "King of Diamonds" a viral hit.

Some of the band's most enthusiastic support came from Seattle's influential KEXP, which commented, "Motopony is the essence of folk 'n' roll on fire with poetic passion." Meanwhile, Austin's KUT praised Blue and company's "incredibly catchy tunes" and L.A.'s tastemaking KCRW noted, "Motopony is an automatic for the KCRW airwaves. The lyric and musicality is magnetic."

MTV, meanwhile, proclaimed Motopony "the best band ever," while Paste magazine raved about the group's "exuberant personality and untamed vocals" and Nylon enthused, "We haven't been able to get Motopony out of our heads" and praised the band's "easy, blues-spiked melodies that can't help but feel simultaneously new and weirdly familiar."

Motopony has already toured widely, winning attention for the impassioned intensity of its live sets at the SXSW and Bumbershoot festivals, with Rolling Stone naming the band as one of 25 Can't-Miss Acts of SXSW 2012. Meanwhile, various Motopony tracks have been featured on several TV shows, including House, Hung, Cougar Town, Suits and How to Make It In America.

The musical and emotional qualities that have won Motopony such loyal support have been deeply ingrained in the band's DNA ever since Daniel Blue first responded to his urge to make music. Having grown up in Colorado and Washington state in a religious family in which he was forbidden to listen to secular music, he nevertheless found himself drawn to music as a vehicle of expression.
After establishing himself in Tacoma, WA's creative community as a graphic artist and clothing designer, Daniel threw himself headlong into music, teaching himself to play a battered guitar with three of its strings removed. It was on that guitar that he quickly wrote his initial batch of "about 50" original songs, which became the foundation for the band that still only existed in his head.

"I just called it Motopony and never got off the train," he recalls. "I didn't know where it was going, but I felt guided and felt a singularity of purpose, and eventually I found my voice."

Blue's initial burst of songwriting provided the raw material for the first Motopony album, which grew out of his unlikely rapport with hip-hop/electronica producer Buddy Ross.

"To me, my collaboration with Buddy was the 'Moto' and the 'Pony': the mechanical part and the organic part. I wanted to combine those things, so I approached Buddy with my twee brokenhearted folkie love songs and he helped me take them to a different place."

Motopony's seemingly unlikely, yet powerful, convergence of elements helped to steer Daniel in a positive direction when it came time for Motopony to evolve into a full band. "It was, OK, I've got these songs that I really believe in, but they needed meat and bones. So I went on a hunt for people who could be a band. It was a challenge to keep a group of people together, and I went through several different people, and finally I sat down and asked myself, 'What do I want this to sound like",' rather than 'Who can I scrape together?'"

Various players came and went, but the ones who stayed, like guitarist Mike Notter and drummer Forrest Mauvais, made an unmistakable mark on the music, as have more recent additions Andrew Butler (keyboards), Nate Daley (guitar) and Terry Mattson (bass). The new lineup is currently working on the next Motopony full-length album with producer Mike McCarthy (Spoon, Heartless Bastards, Trail of the Dead, etc.) slated for release in Spring 2105, and will tour throughout the fall in support Idle Beauty.

"I think that this EP is a nice way to connect the dots between what Motopony was and what it's becoming, which is more raw and energetic and psychedelic," says Notter. "It can be hard work being in a band, so it can be a challenge finding a group of people willing to share a vision long enough to see it through. But I feel like we've got that now, and that we've got a group of people who have their minds set on the same goal. It's starting to feel really solid and really comfortable, and it's been really exciting to see that falling into place."

"Idle Beauty represents a season of transformation and stands as a testament to the stuff we've been through," adds Blue. "I've always believed in synergy and the idea that the sum is greater than the parts, and the mingling of everyone's input is something that's deeply spiritual and magical to me. My dream is that everyone will feel invested, because when I look around on stage, I want to feel like I'm with my tribe. I think that we're on to something special here."
Posted up in Bellingham, Washington, our roots come from friends, islands, small towns, playing loud, an old band called The Cat From Hue, running around in the woods, blowing things up, and working odd jobs. We've had some help along the way, cause why DIY when you can do it with friends?
Eastern Souvenirs
Eastern Souvenirs
Venue Information:
Chop Suey
1325 E Madison St
Seattle, WA, 98122