Slaughter Beach, Dog

Kickstand Productions Presents

Slaughter Beach, Dog

Shannen Moser, Emily Jane Powers

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Beat Kitchen

Chicago, IL

$12.00 - $14.00

Tickets at the Door

This event is 17 and over

Slaughter Beach, Dog
Slaughter Beach, Dog
Few bands can say they were born out of necessity, but Slaughter Beach, Dog can. In 2015, Jake Ewald, in the midst of trying to write songs for his other band Modern Baseball (which has since gone on hiatus), hit a patch of writer’s block. To get himself back in action, Ewald decided to move the focus off of himself, stitching together a loose narrative surrounding a motley cast of characters. Before he knew it, he’d written an entire album, and Slaughter Beach, Dog was no longer an exercise, it was a full-fledged band.

“When I gave myself the specific goal to write these kinds of songs and figure out how to do it, it just broke me open in a way I really needed.” What came pouring out of Ewald was Welcome, a 10-track debut that showed his ability to create a world of his own making, all the while blurring the line between fiction and reality. At times, he’d be singing about people and situations he invented, but the songs were still personal, often informed by experiences deep in his past, excavated for the purpose of expanding his songwriting vocabulary. This approach is even more evident on the new, four-song Slaughter Beach, Dog EP, Motorcycle. jpg. Recalling the likes of John K. Samson or David Bazan, this new batch of songs darts between musical styles and narrative structures. Protagonists go unnamed, leaving it up to the listener to deduce whether or not Ewald is singing about himself or offering updates to the characters found on Welcome. .

“Building The Ark,” Motorcycle .jpg’s first single, works in the same framework as the best songs by The Weakerthans. Like John K. Samson, Ewald is a songwriter that sweats the small stuff, focusing in on tiny details in order to tell a freewheeling account of a strange night in Las Vegas. It’s abstract framing recalls the storytelling of David Lynch, featuring some bloody knuckles and a hazy dream that culminates in a love scene inside of a 7-11. Musically, it’s akin to the deconstructionist Americana found on Wilco’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (his namechecking of “Heavy Metal Drummer” on “104 Degrees” drives it home all the more) as instruments swirl around Ewald, with twangy lead guitar parts peppered in and some oddly-timed cymbal crashes accenting the song’s unpredictable aura.

“I took that as an opportunity to get a little bit weirder than usual,” said Ewald, noting that the EP taps into a more ambitious style of production, while pointing people in the direction of where the new Slaughter Beach, Dog LP—which is currently being recorded—will likely end up. Though it may sounds like a sonic leap, Motorcycle .jpg shows Ewald isn’t so much interested in reinvention as much as he is expansion. Everything he’s hinted at in his previous work is blown out here, allowing him to create songs that never settle into one specific set of sounds. “104 Degrees” features chest-rattling synths and a plainspoken vocal delivery befitting of Fred Thomas. The acoustic guitar strums accompanied by muted drums on “Glowing” turn a Superweaks cover into a Left And Leaving B-side. “Your Cat” is a sunbaked, out-of-body fantasy that’s both aimlessly fun and deeply introspective.

Though Slaughter Beach, Dog may have started as a project for Ewald to get past a mental block, it’s grown into something more. Under this moniker Ewald has built a rich, vibrant world—and it may very well be the one we’re living in.
Shannen Moser
Shannen Moser
Hailing from Berks County Pennsylvania, Shannen Moser grew up steeped in folk and country music. Influenced by the historically rich area, stretching farmland, and local folkers, Shannen credits the area with giving her the tools to write the music she does today. Her selftaught guitar plucking style and confessional lyricism are evocative of the area she grew up in.
She vividly recalls her first encounter with folk music in her dad’s old truck, playing “Be here in the Morning” by Townes Van Zandt. Since then her love for songwriting has continued to grow.

In 2014 Shannen moved to Philadelphia to pursue her music more earnestly. Her latest recording, the debut LP “Oh My Heart” was released in January this year and has taken her from small bedroom recordings to a more expansive sound. Mostly recorded in a barn in Earlville, New York by Eric Muth, the record moves forward sonically while preserving the sincerity of
her earlier work and showcasing Moser’s folk and country influences. The record was later finished in Philadelphia at the Knife Lair, a new studio project headed by Eric Muth and Wyatt
Oberholzer. Accompanied by cello from Julia Peters, keys by Joe Evers, and guitar and auxiliary by Muth, Shannen’s band has helped her solo acoustic project evolve into a fuller sounding project. “Oh My Heart” moves beyond the sketchbooks of Shannen’s earlier work and proves an arrival for both her and her band.
Emily Jane Powers
Emily Jane Powers
Emily Jane Powers is a Chicago indie pop artist who plays guitar, violin, keys, drums, and sings. While she incorporates aspects of 60s pop, folk, and punk into her music, she has never looked to any influence but herself for a sense of direction. Known primarily for her densely arranged bedroom pop, Emily recently finished Part of Me, a new album that peels back the layers to reveal her most direct songwriting and creative production to date.

Emily's music has been a well-kept secret for over a decade. New listeners who stumble upon her back catalog will be overwhelmed by its size and richness. Starting in Michigan in 2002, Emily wrote and recorded an album nearly every year, honing a bedroom pop sound that was simultaneously lush, intimate, and playful. Fiercely independent, her albums were generally DIY in spirit and technique, but the final product had an undeniable universal appeal that set her apart from the lo-fi scene. Her sugary and multilayered sound reached perfection on 2009's Undertone, a joyfully luxuriant set of ten expertly crafted songs.

On Part of Me, Emily assesses the value and durability of her ties to the past. As with many of her previous albums, it explores past loves and friendships with a touch of nostalgia and a touch of hurt. Part of Me focuses largely on the latter, feeling more often like an exorcism than a celebration. Assigning blame and offering forgiveness, Emily weighs the costs and benefits of her connections to the past in a struggle to determine which to keep and which to sever.

Part of Me is more of a collaborative project than Emily's previous work, enlisting the help of Christopher Gilbert (Timetables), Andrew Sadoway (Bent Shapes), Alec Jensen and Eric Brummitt (Dream Version). In addition to her solo work, Emily has recorded an EP with Andrew Sadoway as Snooze and an LP with Jasen Reeder (Page France) as Introductions.
Venue Information:
Beat Kitchen
2100 West Belmont Avenue
Chicago, IL, 60618
http://www.beatkitchen.com/