We met Lou Barlow post sound check at Paradise Rock [...]
Sleepover Show #116: O’Death
We first became acquainted with O’Death in the spring of 2008. They were on tour with Murder By Death and we’re playing selection from their record Head Home. It was truly one of those rare “holy-shit-what-is-this-!?” moments. The band sounded like they’d wandered in from some sort of alternate universe where hard rock was played exclusively on the banjo. The band screamed and pushed themselves up against the low ceiling of the Middle East Downstairs.
And that was it. Over the next four years, our relationship with the boys from New York blossomed like in a Nicholas Sparks novel. They spent a couple nights at the old 154 location on their tours in 2008 and 2009. We had a couple near misses at filming them for a Sleepover Show in 2010 and 2011, but finally, in early 2012, our longtime dream came true. We captured the magic that is O’Death.
The night began how any night with O’Death should: I got a call from David Rogers-Berry at 3AM because the band was on the way to the house in need of a place to sleep. Deliriously enough, and with my sleepy assistance, David managed to park the band’s van entirely blocking the neighbor’s driveway.
The next morning, we dragged the O’Death’s air mattress out into a snowy field so that the now six piece gothic bluegrass could use it as a makeshift raft.
The first tune we filmed was Back of the Garden, off of O’Death’s latest record, Outside.
Next was a throwback to the band’s previous record, Broken Hymns, Limbs and Skin. Home is an anthemic earwig that we couldn’t resist. Singer Greg Jamie’s voice warbled perfectly in the February air.
Last was Black Dress another cut from Outside. This one involved trombonist and newest member, Tristan Palozola standing 50 feet behind Jamie and banjoist Gabe Darling, conducted by an off-camera David RB.
After wrapping, we smiled and hugged and bid us a fond farewell. A few hours later, we got a call from bassist Jesse Newman, saying that he accidentally left a good luck charm in our couch cushion. I promised to mail it back to him, but it totally slipped my mind until this moment. Newman, it’s coming, we promise.