I’m sucker for good synth pop and Minneapolis has some of my favorites. Tiny Deaths is one of them, yet somehow I missed that were working on a new album. I did a double take when I saw their album release show popping up on the Icehouse calendar. Tiny Deaths had been working on “Magic” for quite a while. It was recorded in 2017 and finally ready to see the light of day. So I found myself at the venue with a growling stomach as they changed over from Tina Schlieske’s set to the late night show.
One delicious Icehouse Burger and a Plum Galette later I was ready for the opener Gully Boys – or so I thought. I was in for a few surprises. There are no boys in the band, they are anything but electro pop, and they rocked our faces off! The trio just released their first LP “Not So Brave” in August. Their style is a bit hard to describe. Its roots are punk if closely other influences stand out. I loved their driving baseline. A broken guitar string led to an equipment swap just before the show and singer Kaytee Callahan clearly liked her new guitar. “We’ve never played this song that fast” she commented. If you see Gully Boys playing at a venue near you, go check them out. You will have fun.
Set List: Wanna Go Home / Greasy / Big Bad Luvr / Dizzy Romantics / Half Full / Neopet Graveyard / Dream Girl / Sugar Scrub / Savior No Saving / Tv Window / Nosy Heart
Tiny Deaths is a duo, but much like the wizard of Oz, producer Grant Cutler remains behind the curtain while singer Claire de Lune is the public face of the band, manages and tours. I’ve enjoyed Cutler’s various projects since hearing him first with Lookbook. I mentioned that I had not paid attention to tiny death recently, right? Well, I missed de Lune moving to LA until I read about it in an interview before the show. The collaboration between East and West Coast turned Minneapolis into musical Switzerland (does that mean we can finally get decent milk chocolate here, not the 99% bitter cocoa stuff?). I was half expecting Toto to appear and pull the Icehouse’s curtain backdrop down revealing a surprised Cutler.
“Us” started the set and quickly plunged the room into a smoke filled web of sound with de Lune’s voice reaching out to pull us in. She mentioned a couple of times that it was good to be home and also that they would be playing “mostly new shit”. The transition between songs always seemed to include a bit of music connecting them. I really enjoyed the new songs, I hear a certain playfulness in them. Go dive into “Magic” you will find some cool music. My personal favorite? “Home”.
Set List: Us / Don’t Let Go / Always / Home /Away / Daughter / Ever / Autumn / The Gardener / Flame / Magic