Once a month (or so), I'm bringing you an episode of the Pickathon Pumphouse Series, filmed in the tiny Pumphouse studio on the grounds of the Pickathon music festival in Happy Valley, Oregon, by Live & Breathing. For more on the festival and the series, see this post.
This is the first episode in the Pickathon spring season.
Special bonus news: The Pickathon 2016 final schedule has been announced! Highlights include Jeff Tweedy (of Wilco), Beach House, Wolf Parade, Yo La Tengo, Ty Segall, and many others. You can buy your tickets here.
Today's episode brings us a performance from the Fruit Bats, longtime veterans of the indie music scene, playing Soft Boys' "Queen of Eyes":
Fruit Bats started as a low-fi solo bedroom project of singer/songwriter Eric D. Johnson way back in 1997, in Chicago, Illinois. Johnson, who was in and out of various bands over the years (including the Shins and Califone), eventually put together a band, released a debut album in 2001, signed with Sub Pop in 2002, and released four more albums over the following nine years, before dissolving the group in 2013.
The band never really blew up, but they plugged along on the periphery of the 2000s indie-pop boom, playing with an idiosyncratic mix of '70s AM pop melodies and crunchy So-Cal alt-country instrumentation. (My favorite of theirs is 2005's Spelled In Bones.)
Happily, it turns out the Fruit Bats are back in action and have a new album, Absolute Loser, coming out on May 17. You can preorder it here.