The city of Burnsville isn’t known for being a musical city but in the heart of it sits, The Garage. A place that has been building its reputation up over the years. Whether it has been helping young new local bands play shows, giving touring bands a fantastic venue to fill or just acting as a youth center, The Garage has become more powerful than you could ever imagine. On December 2nd, 2017, the up and coming band The Wrecks played to a full house. With them they brought two excellent bands lovelytheband and Brick + Mortar. I had the pleasure of sitting down with “The Wrecks” and “lovelytheband” before and during the show.
As I was escorted back stage I felt anxious, being a fan of this band and it being one of my first interviews, I didn’t know what to expect. However, I was immediately greeted by all the bands. Guitarist, Nick Schmidt of “The Wrecks” was one of the first people I met. He waltzed up to shake my hand while eating a “Raising Canes” box meal. I knew then where I was going after the show.
As I sat down with “The Wrecks” I was told that Nick Anderson, the singer, was on voice rest. So as we all talked he would drop in hand signals and smile. He was either the easiest or hardest to interview, whichever way you look at it. When I asked my first question about their origin story drummer, Billy Nally, replied “hot air balloon accident”. As we all went along with it and laughed for a while, we decided to get the real answer. Initially, Schmidt interned with their band manager and Anderson was going to school out in California. They met up and recruited Nally and bassist, Aaron Kelly, both from New Jersey. Kelly told his Mom “Mom I’m leaving for California”. While Nally laughed and said he gave his Mom a two week notice.
The band has found great success after just releasing three songs. Schmidt said “It’s weird, we shouldn’t be on a headlining tour right now. Three song… We’re very lucky”. As our conversation went on, it was very obvious that they do not get much time off. They said anytime they aren’t playing shows they are travelling, so there is limited to no time for sightseeing.
As our conversation wound down. We talked about influences and musical backgrounds. I found it interesting that even though they were not from here, three of the band members have played at The Garage in the past in other projects. As for the influences, they all love “Cage the Elephant”, “The Strokes”, and “The Killers”. As you listen to their EP “We Are The Wrecks” you can hear all of these stemming out, but with their very own sound and uniqueness to them.
Before we parted ways, I asked them, “So what’s next?” The band all joked and said “we’re actually playing a show tonight, you can come if you want!” But all joking aside guitarist Western Weiss spoke up and said “We have some support tours coming up we’re really excited for in the spring. And put out our new EP that’s already recorded.” We will be sure to keep a look out for both of these things.
While our writer was backstage talking to the Wrecks, Brick + Mortar opened the show with a killer set
After the interview I walked back on to the floor. The building was full by this time and it was finally time for the show to start. The first band up was “lovelytheband” the bassless, three piece. Even only knowing a handful of their songs, this indie rock band blew me away. They had this pop sensibility to appeal to a large demographic but they still held the stage like a bunch of rockers. The band got the crowd going with their new song by having us all sing the chorus. It was a catchy hook that got the crowd loud and jumping. Second to last they played their single “Broken” this song got the biggest reaction and proved that this band is a force to be reckoned with.
After their set I was once again escorted back stage, where I got to sit down with “lovelytheband”. This time I was a bit for confident with my interviewing skills, plus I was pumped up on adrenaline from seeing their set. As we sat on the couches with the sound of air hockey clanging in the back I expressed how much I enjoyed their show and how they have this two faced pop and rock side. Guitarist and singer, Mitchy Collins, said “We try and find the fine line”. Same Price the drummer of the band talked about how it was their first tour and how cool it was to be playing places that aren’t in California. Collins then spoke up about being here in the Twin Cities before. “My last project, I came through here all the time. It’s always been a great city for shows. And the fans have always been crazy.” After that we talked about the music to come out of the Twin Cities from the punk to Prince to debating if Bob Dylan counts as Twin Cities or MN for that matter. After all the musical conversation dwindled off, I asked them the final question of “What’s next”. Guitarist, Jordan Greenwald, answered very simply. “More shows, more of this, more music.” After that I was brought back onto the floor to see the next band.
When I got situated I noticed a big screen had been placed behind the gear. The stage had a totally different look to it. Brick + Mortar were about to set the bar for all visually stimulating shows at The Garage. I had never seen or heard of them before, so to see this band and its props were like seeing one of those random Adult Swim shorts; humorous, bizarre and absolutely amazing. Whether it was dancing shirtless while wearing oversized hands, dressing in a red pope suit or just putting on a pill bottom costume, this band did not fail to entertain. Playing their songs “Terrible Things” and Locked in a Cage” the crowd then was energized and ready for the main act thanks to this fantastic rock group. In return the crowd made sure that they felt welcome in the Twin Cities.
Finally it was time, the stage was set and the room went dark. The stage glowed with these boxes that were located on each end. The crowd screamed as “The Wrecks” took the stage. They opened with a song that no one, else you have being searching like crazy on YouTube had heard of. But with only three songs, you expect to hear new things. After the first song they started playing one of their tracks off their EP “I Don’t Like You”. Front man, Anderson, told the crowd, that his voice was almost gone and he needed help tonight singing. Burnsville, did not disappoint and neither did Anderson. His voice sounded stronger than ever, showing that he could hold his own even during a rough time. The band played a 45 minute set, closing with a song called “Life”. After hearing it live I can’t wait to listen to that track recorded. It was easily my favorite one of the night. For the encore they played three songs. The first one was a cover right in their wheel house “Are You Gonna Be My Girl?” by Jet. As the crowd moshed and sang The Wrecks never stopped the energy. The last two songs were the other songs off their EP. “Turn It Up” and “Favorite Lair” which was easily the crowd favorite.
When I got in my car that night to go home I took a few things away. One, The Garage is on the rise. Two, people should watch out for The Wrecks because they are coming up fast. And three, I definitely still needed to get some chicken from “Raising Canes”.