- Age Restriction: 18+
- Door Time: 7:00pm
- Event Time: 8:00pm
Dree Leer is back for a free show and they're bringing their friends in The Pauses and Trooper!
Formed in Birmingham by Jackie Lo along with friends Mandy Graffeo (bass) and Mikey D (drums), Dree Leer delivers an unhinged, heavy alternative pop sound that pays homage to the familiar sounds of the 90s guitar rock behemoths, but also forges its own path by injecting its songs with relevant social commentary and themes of women empowerment.
"Dree Leer was one of my online names going back to '95," Jackie Lo explained. "'Leer' means a look or a gaze and 'Dree' is a word that means 'to endure something unwanted or painful.' It speaks to what women have to endure on a regular basis. A lot of the songs are pro women having a voice and speaking out and being strong and powerful."
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Jason Hamric with additional recording by Les Nuby and Hamric at Ol Elegante Studio, the ferocity of the band's music is well-documented throughout Throw Hands with nearly every song unleashing a steady barrage of noise into the listener's ears while choruses such as "when you walk away, take your hand up off my throat" provide a template for thought-provoking themes that echo well after the final note fades. Songs like “Live Forever” - inspired by a dream of Jackie Lo’s that morphed into a rumination on legacy and love - as well as “Run Away” (a tune that takes its cue from early Radiohead) provide a vulnerable and ethereal counterbalance to the more aggressive tracks.
In addition to bringing light to issues felt by women in the 21st century, Dree Leer's studio album and live shows work to obliterate the novelty of the "girl in a band" cliche that can plague female-fronted or female-centric acts. "I can speak my mind and play loud music. I want to be loud and not be quiet about it. It's important for me to be a woman on stage playing guitar and singing and the music to be loud with lots of crunch and lots of fuzz and all those beautiful things that I've loved for so many years. I look out into the audience and I see young girls and I see them excited. I don't want it to be weird that there's a girl playing loud music."
With their sophomore release Unbuilding, the Pauses have hit their sonic geyser, and attentive listeners can marvel at the resulting indierocktronica glints and glitter. Based in Orlando, Florida, the Pauses are multi-instrumentalist Jason Kupfer, vocalist-bassist-keyboardist Tierney Tough, and drummer Nathan Chase. Their debut, A Cautionary Tale, introduced listeners to Kupfer’s studied ear and methodical rock flourishes, Chase’s technical rhythms, and Tough’s attentive musicality and immaculate vocal. Both of their albums were produced and mixed by J. Robbins (Jawbox, Burning Airlines), and his influence can be heard in the heavier guitar propulsion that churns under the allure of the electronic ear candy on the surface. This combination live makes dancing feel like a decision the whole room made at once.
On Unbuilding, the Pauses have evolved their collaborative songwriting, and few tracks show the pop heft of that effort as well as “Digital Detox.” It slams you almost like a wall of sound, with Tough’s typically clear-as-a-bell vocal distorted to great effect, evoking ‘60s girl groups with warped sensibilities. Trumpets, timpani, cello, theremin and electronic elements are called upon to create the Pauses’ authentic sound, and then whisked away to allow the vocals space, as in the sparse, unusual dreamscape on “Had/Have.” Other times, the sound can bound in bilateral increments, like the playful piano to guitar crush of “The Means.” Their range is key, with loud live rockers like “Don’t Wake Me Up” and “Animus?”, which is particularly intense as it dangles wildly at the album’s end and concludes, “What a way to feel nothing real.”
That line evokes an overarching theme of the album, which gazes into the black mirror and is smart enough not to take it seriously. Songs like “Eventually, Everything Connects,” “Digital Detox” and “Don’t Wake Me Up” suggest a rebellion against the online drone, with lines that invite you to throw your arms up and sing out, “I don’t need the details shoved down my throat.
The Pauses / Trooper