What: The Dandy Warhols
When: Oct. 28
Where: The Fine Line Music Cafe
These days there are so many bands stemming from the alternative vein that itâÄôs relatively easy for groups to become irrelevant, boring or just plain bad. Rarely does an underground band create a lasting wave in the continuum of that brand of rock, and more rarely still does said band achieve this without drastically changing their sound.
Yet, 15 years after their debut, The Dandy Warhols still have the ability to urge listeners to light up and relish in the simplistic, honest power of their psychedelic jams.
The Portland-based group has had an intriguing run thus far. Their early rise to success, famously recounted in the award-winning documentary âÄúDIG!,âÄù left the group signed with mainstream label Capitol Records. Career-wise, this was monumental in establishing their name. But The Dandy Warhols were always notoriously disenchanted with the label and felt continually stifled by its expectations and influence. The Dandys had started their own musical revolution, and it never suited them to be bossed around by people that couldnâÄôt really understand their art.
âÄúWe never really fit into one of the little boxes that they need in order to get us on commercial radio or on MTV or whatever,âÄù said guitarist Peter HolmstrÃ¶m. âÄúIf we were going to be in a box it was going to be of our own making.âÄù
Despite their disillusions, the band did manage to exist in their self-made box and still live out the whiskey-stained rock star dream made fiscally possible by the name Capitol Records. They were, in fact, quite infamous party animals, though they consider that fact something vital to their youth.
âÄúYou know, when youâÄôre young you donâÄôt censor yourself as much, or if you do itâÄôs in different ways,âÄù said HolmstrÃ¶m. âÄúI think that youâÄôre generally a little bit more creative, from a lack of knowing what youâÄôre supposed to be doing and just pure energy.âÄù
ItâÄôs practically blasphemous to think of The Dandy Warhols regretting or apologizing for their energy, even if some of it may have been illegal. It was that energy that pushed their music forward so consistently and unabashedly.
WhatâÄôs interesting, though, is that despite the bandâÄôs self-proclaimed individuality, their latest release is a greatest hits collection titled âÄúThe Capitol Years.âÄù
âÄúIt seems kind of weird to have put out this record in that itâÄôs kind of what other bands do,âÄù HolmstrÃ¶m said. âÄúIâÄôve never really thought of us as doing that.âÄù
However, the greatest hits record is far from the bandâÄôs last high. After touring, the next new record they create can be expected to break traditional Dandy Warhol norms.
âÄúItâÄôs so radically different,âÄù said HolmstrÃ¶m. âÄúIt doesnâÄôt really sound like Dandys songs to me, which might be a good thing.âÄù