by Andrew Norman
In a ground floor studio of a five-story brick building in Philadelphia's East Kensington that once housed horse stables but now serves as a burgeoning arts collective/exhibition space, we find the four-piece Cymbals Eat Guitars on Day 9 of the 2012 Love Drunk Tour. Tiny tools, wires, spray paint cans and circuit boards all have organized homes in this space, which primarily serves as Cymbals keyboardist Brian Hamilton's shop where, as the company Small Sound/Big Sound, he turns metal boxes, plastic knobs and complicated circuitry into customized effects pedals.
It takes less than an hour for the six-person Love Drunk tour crew (fresh off an airport swap of Andrew Roger and Matt Hovanec for Brendan Greene-Walsh and Daniel Muller) to load in the audio equipment required to record 16 channels remotely, decide camera lighting and shooter positions, and make small talk about the band's recent tour with Omaha's Cursive and Conduits before director Django G-S makes claps a few times to allow him to later sync the audio with the video, and says, "whenever you're ready."
From the band's most recent (and second) full-length, Lenses Alien, the tempo-shifting song is a "throat shredder," frontman Joe D'Agostino says. Called "Plainclothes," it stemmed from a mushroom trip D'Agostino went on with a couple friends in the woods.
"When they kicked in, we thought we had bugs all over us, so we ran out of the woods and got in the car and nobody could drive but me, because I guess I was of the most sound-mind at that point," he says. "We drove from South Jersey to Manhattan, and the song is kind of about that trip and being terrified about being pulled over, and state troopers and whatnot.
"But it's also kind of a little true crime murder mystery, and a little kind of space-age nonsense."
Solve the case below.
Six Love Drunk videographers are on tour shooting live, one-take videos with bands across the eastern part of the U.S., spreading the word about Nebraska music along the way. This was day six of 17-day tour. Learn more about the project and the tour here. Watch all the videos here.
audio recorded/mixed by Django G-S
video directed/edited by Django G-S
* performed Saturday, May 12, 2012
Andrew Norman is Hear Nebraska's editor-in-chief. On the night the crew shot this band, they had a wonderful evening full of drinks with Philly friends Arrah Fisher and Scott Kurtain. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.