Localized Appreesh: Churches

Don't cross out Churches.

Localized Appreesh is our weekly thank-you column to the musicians that make the Bay. To be considered, contact emilysavage@sfbg.com.
There's a whole lot of religious imagery going on within new local guitar-and-drums superduo Churches. Most vivid, beyond the obvious, is the guilty, desperate strain in mesmerizing first single, “Save Me,” and its jittery remixes. The track and remixes (available on Bandcamp) are both pleading and sensual, evoking the classic good/evil ecstasy of sacred customs.

Musically, the band – made up of Caleb Nichols (Grand Lake, Port O'Brien) and Pat Spurgeon (Rogue Wave) – arouses memories of '90s bedroom angst; “Save Me,” recorded at Tiny Telephone, utilizes this vibe and mixes it with distorted pop, repetitive calls, and lightly-employed synth. Second single “Feel Alright,” released today, follows the garage trail deeper, occasionally evoking an early Nirvana-lite.

What better way to showcase an auspicious local act than with a slot during Noise Pop? Churches plays Bottom of the Hill this week with Fresh & Onlys. But first, they gave us the rundown on a new life as Churches.

Year and location of origin: September 2011. San Francisco and Oakland. Tiny Telephone and Harlan Street.

Band name origin: I came up with the name while on tour with WATERS (I was playing bass with them). I remember that Van and Niko and I were talking about what my next music thing should be and we came up with the idea for Churches, which is the English translation of my middle name, Kirke, but plural.

Band motto: Aequalis opus aequalis stipendium.

Description of sound in 10 words or less: Re-experience teen angst through distortion and chorus plus loud drums.

Instrumentation: Guitar, Singing, Drums + (a little) Bass and Moog.

Most recent release:  "Feel Alright"  - a self-released single, out today, Feb. 21.

Best part about life as a Bay Area band: Lots of great venues, lots of great musicians and studios.

Worst part about life as a Bay Area band: Living here can be expensive. Being a musician can be expensive. Many musicians are poor. So, the math is against some of us.

First album ever purchased: Michael Jackson Dangerous.

Most recent album purchased/borrowed from the Web:
Cloud Nothings, Attack on Memory.

Favorite local eatery and dish: 
Super Duper on Market and Castro.  Best burger in the WORLD.

Noise Pop: Churches
With Fresh and Onlys, Talkdemonic, Disappears
Wed/22, 8 p.m., $12
Bottom of the Hill

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