In My Ears: Rozwell Kid

It’s been a while since I spewed forth notes from my musical manifesto, but I figured the holiday down time is a good time to waste time with nonsense about my band of the week/what I’m listening to at the moment.

These days–nine times out of ten–I am late to the party compared to modern-day hipsters. However as a forty-four year old living in a small town in the middle of rural Michigan who often leaves the house only to ride his bike, I’m just happy to get to the party at all, even if the trip to said party means wading through a sea of snarky “no one listens to them anymore” comments from people young enough to be my kid and wearing a slouchy ski cap in 75˚ temperatures.


According to Spotify, the two artists I listened to the most in 2015 were Drenge and Modest Mouse, both of whom released stellar LPs in 2015 [Undertow and Strangers to Ourselves]. Arriving WAY too late to my 2015 aural party is a band out of West Virginia (yes, West Virginia) called Rozwell Kid. I really can’t stop listening to their 2015 EP Good Graphics, 2014’s Too Shabby or 2011’s The Rozwell Kid LP. In other words to paraphrase Office Space “I celebrate their entire catalog.”

Let’s get the obligatory “they sound like Weezer” part out of the way now:

The harmonic, power pop, indie rock slackness of Rozwell Kid has everything I dug/dig about bands like Pavement and yes, Weezer, but the good Weezer, not the one that brought us absolutely cringe worthy songs like Pork and Beans and Beverly Hills. Not to mention I have a feeling Rozwell Kid won’t be offering any cruise ship concert packages anytime soon (unless it’s on a pontoon boat around Cheat Lake). Weezer comparisons aside I’m finding myself digging the harmonies, lyrics and fuzzy bass and guitar more than any Weezer track since 2002’s Maladroit. Not to mention I sympathize with any band that has to constantly carry around comparisons to influences that way [see Interpol’s long time comparison to Joy Division by critics].

Upon fist hearing Rozwell Kid I was sure that the band must hail from the west coast. I mean no one (outside of Karl Hendricks) so close to my old Pennsylvania/West Virginia stomping grounds could possibly create such awesomeness (that area of the country is still steeped in classic rock and people whose musical tastes topped out their freshman year of college. I was of course wrong, and now knowing where they are from, makes them sound even better to me.

Long gone are my days of skulking around record stores finding my new favorite band (mostly because there are no record stores), going to shows or collecting CDs of my favorite artists (the four hundred or so packed away in boxes because I no longer own a CD player are enough). Now I am content with tracking down new bands and long time faves on iTunes or Spotify and supporting the bands by preaching about them via my ongoing musical manifesto or buying a t-shirts from them. It’s not ideal for either party concerned but I am happy when I find a new band such as Rozwell Kid to champion and listen to in the car with the volume loud enough to mask the sounds of my ungodly voice singing out loud.

Bike related notes of interest: The first Rozwell Kid song I ever heard was while watching Svenness 3.6 on Vimeo [at 7:26].

Hope you enjoy listening to some of their tunes as much as I’ve been.

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