Vehicles play with Crush, Sona, and Cosmic Octive tonight at the Eagles Lodge.
Vehicles released their second album this summer, it is called Satchels & Beards. This album is a treasure to behold.
Cody Cloud, lead singer, says that the title of the album reflects on the band members. “It’s got kind of a connected message, through out it all so it feels like a good record. It’s got a good narrative, but it’s not a rock opera…” said Cloud.
Cloud is a bitter, jaded motherfucker. Cody Cloud will tell you that the only thing wrong with Satchels & Beards is that Cody Cloud performed lead vocals on the album. I will tell you that his range is limited, but it works with the style. The strain of his vocals matching perfectly with the frustration Vehicles’ songs portray.
These frustrations relate to struggling for years just to create art. Hoping people will appreciate the art you are creating, but knowing that you’re going to do it whether anyone likes it or not. Capsize, track number two on the album, best captures the feelings of approaching middle age, and looking back on your life with some regret. The chorus bellows “we lost our nerve, we lost our youth”, and could well serve as an anthem for the 25-45 set-acquiescing to a life less than what we had anticipated when we were still able to dream.
While the song does feel like it is filled with regret, it manages to maintain a danceable beat. Live, this song features a KEYTAR! So, that is awesome.
Vehicles have seen many different lineups over the six years they have been together, and in fact their lineup continues to change depending on who is available for what gigs, just because some guys are available and some guys aren’t.
“I know it kind of hurts our tightness here and there, but sometimes you just gotta play loose,” Cloud said. Playing live allows for fluidity, playing real tight is for the studio-not the stage. And Vehicles nailed their recording. Everything is in it’s right place on Satchels & Beards.
Through all the lineup changes Vehicles has seen Cloud says that it was important that they not start from the beginning again. So while they may have some lineup changes, they stay Vehicles.
“It’s hard to get momentum going when you get a new band. It sucks when you have to take a 6 month break , just because life gets in your way. It feels like your starting all over again especially in Wichita.
The music on Satchels & Beards has a higher key that balances nicely with the darker undertones.
This album is a veritable potpourri of influences. If you listen closely you may detect some angst ala punk, but the keytar and synthesizer provide a certain new wave feel that can’t be denied. Transporter features a haunting version of what could almost be considered a surfer rock sort of guitar riff.
Liar, from Satchels & Beards, starts out slow, has a faster/harder pounding hook. Cloud has a smallish voice that sounds strained when he sings aggressively (aka screams) it works with the style of music. The track sounds like a meek person that has been pushed around and is fed up, these songs don’t want to be picked on and if you do they will kick your ass.
Satchels & Beards was recorded with Paul Carter at Planet Paul. Cloud says he liked working with Paul Carter. He said Carter pulled stuff out that he didn’t expect. Vehicles recorded a bunch of parts, whatever they wanted and Paul put it all togther. Letting a producer produce paid off for Vehicles.
When it comes to live shows Cloud says it’s feast or famine. He says that if the band is playing with good bands, has the time to promote and make good posters they usually have a great turnout, but it’s never guaranteed.
Cloud also noted that when Vehicles asks a band to play with them sometimes it feels like asking someone to a high school dance. He said that he wishes it were easier for bands to work together, and that he doesn’t see how it could serve any band well to refuse to play certain venues or with certain bands.