There are tiny bone chips in my right elbow because of a curb in Austin, my inability to maneuver a children's bicycle down a steep hill, and inherent humanity. Back at SXSW '09 on the way to see Balaclavas play their showcase, I smashed my bike into a curb swerving to miss a car that was about to hit me, breaking my elbow as I hit the ground. I still showed up at their show a few minutes later with misty eyes, a useless arm, and a smile on my face. I cried like a baby when I got to my hotel room though.
Tonight is Balaclavas' tour kick-off show at the new Walter's on Naylor - still getting used to that phrase - with frequent bill mates Black Congress. Last fall the band released their follow-up to 2010's Roman Holiday, the superbly scary-good Snake People, and made it into our - well, my own - best of Houston top ten list.
We asked bassist Brian Harrison a series of questions this week regarding the tour, the reviews of Snake People, and their fans, and he sent us answers back in timely manner so we could post this blog.
Rocks Off: Where is this tour taking you?
Balaclavas: The next tour takes us to Austin, Marfa, Phoenix, San Diego, two shows in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Tucson, Albuquerque, and Lubbock. Our tour in March will hit middle America and the East Coast as well as the sultry South.
RO: What is this Snake People follow-up supposed to sound like?
B: Not to give away too much, but we've been working with dischord and straightforward rhythms. We plan to release in March.
RO: The acclaim for Snake People was immediate. What was the best thing you heard about it, and from where?
RO: Outside of Houston, what is the live reaction to Balaclavas? I always wondered what the crowds looked like in other cities. I have seen Austin crowds. The Houston crowds are all fellow musicians and journalists and freaky-deakies.
B: It's the same. Especially the freaky-deakies. Especially.
RO: I have called you guys one of the most mature bands in town. Is that off-base? Are their other bands and people in town that you look up to for musical direction though?
B: The music is mature, our personalities are certainly not, and we do not look up to anyone else.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.