The Gay Blades Do America

 “I mean, Fullerton, California in the O.C? What the fuck do you write about that? ‘My dad’s a shitty entertainment executive’? We’re thinking about maybe doing a Beastie Boys-style rap song.”

 

 
 
 
 
Touring in support of their recently released sophomore album Savages, The Gay Blades will be traversing most of the USA this December. It’s a rotten time to be on the road through the Midwest, as guitarist Clark Westfield (born James Dean Wells) acknowledged when I spoke to him. “We’re driving through the shitty rain on the way to Columbus, Ohio,” he said. “You put out an album in October, you tour in December. That’s just how it goes.”
 
The band has decided to write a song for each city on the tour, taking care to integrate the character and attitude of each locale into its composition. When I asked Wells where the idea came from he said, “I honestly don’t remember. We wrote a song for Savages called ‘Why Winter In Detroit?’ so maybe it came from that. In fact, we played a morning show in Detroit–because The Gay Blades and morning shows totally go together–and we played that song there. We talked about the idea and I thought ‘I could totally’ do this. But it’s harder than you think. In fact you called just as I was working on the bridge to the San Francisco song.” Somewhere in there is a lame Golden Gate reference.
 
Wells recognizes the challenge of writing for certain towns, too: “I mean, Fullerton, California in the O.C? What the fuck do you write about that? ‘My dad’s a shitty entertainment executive’? We’re thinking about maybe doing a Beastie Boys-style rap song.”
 
While the band was focused mainly on making “just a great sounding record,” Wells appreciates that, in his words, “It’s not every day that you’re given tens of thousands of dollars to make an album.” Indeed, Savages features more layered production than the band’s self-produced debut, Ghosts, which led me to wonder if the band is still touring as a duo with Wells on guitar and vocals and Puppy Mills (aka Quinn English) on drums. Wells said, “Actually we picked up a character on the side of the road that happens to play a mean keyboard.” Said character is actually Mike Abiuso, who also contributes vocal duties. Sadly, the horn section featured on the new album had to stay at home. | Corey Woodruff
 
The Gay Blades plays at Cicero’s on Wednesday, December 1st . Wells warns St. Louisans to “Come with your your dancing boots on.”
 
Corey Woodruff’s shots from the show:
[cincopa AAMAZUK3qDk8]

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