Quasi – American Gong

As you all know, I think Janet Weiss is the queen of all things rock and roll. Together with her ex-husband, Sam Coomes, they’ve been making music as Quasi since 1993. In the last few years they’ve added bassist Joanna Bolme who Janet has been playing with in Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks.

I’ve tried to get into Quasi’s music but it’s never clicked with me. Maybe because it’s mellower than Sleater-Kinney or Steve Malkmus, which is the expectation I have when I hear something that Janet’s playing in. I even dragged myself, suffering under a terrible flu, into Richards on Richards on a work night to see Quasi open for Ted Leo and the Pharmacists. The show was good and I went back through their old albums but the music still wouldn’t stick.

A couple of days ago Quasi posted a link to their new EP on iTunes and I thought I’d try it out. It was only $3 and I’m happy to support their music even if I don’t listen to it much. What I didn’t expect were three songs that I’ve had them on repeat constantly since I bought them! I can barely believe this is the same band! All guitar, super-catchy, and fabulous harmonies (which is the secret weapon in Quasi’s music).

Yesterday I pre-ordered the vinyl off Kill Rock Stars so I could get the DVD featuring Quasi doing an entire show of covers of songs by The Who. The digital copy of the album got sent to me today and when I spun it this evening I was blown away again by how awesome it is!

My friends make fun of me for what Shan has dubbed, “The Darren Enthusiasm” since I tend to get mildly obsessive about things I love, especially new albums and bands. So I am fully enthusing about this new album. I expect to be hard pressed to find a better album released by the end of this year. Hopefully the band makes a stop in Vancouver. Even if they don’t, they live in Portland and are bound to do a show in Seattle or Portland before the years out. I’m so going to go see that if it’s within a few hours drive.

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