- The Bedrooms play a loose-but-smart style of melodic guitar pop on their new self-titled disc
w/ April Invention
Sat. July 8
1055 Johnnie Dodds Blvd.
"The plan with the Bedrooms is that there is no plan," laughs Ash Hopkins, bassist with local trio The Bedrooms. "Something might happen. I don't know. We're kind of shamelessly unambitious ... like an experiment to see what we can achieve with extremely little."
"We've almost had this arrogant, snotty attitude that we don't care," adds drummer Jack Burg, 32, a native of Columbia and a longtime Charleston rock musician who spent time with SKWZBXX, Biv, and other local bands. "It's kind of like the whole attitude of the band is just, 'fuck it' [laughs]. It's an interesting dynamic. We like the spontaneity and we usually pull it off."
Hopkins and Burg are only half-joking, of course. Along with guitarist/vocalist and main songwriter Danny Cassady, they obviously cared enough to put a pile of cleverly-written rock songs together and record them in Hopkins' Rebellion Road Studios. Despite the loose approach, the end result was quite impressive.
"It's always been the point of the band to not put a lot of thought into anything, you know?" shrugs Hopkins. "Jack is so amazing, it's so easy for us to play the tunes. We almost never rehearse for shows. We'll either rehearse a bunch for a session or show, or we won't see each other for two months before the day of a show.
"The whole idea of the studio in general is to make a band's songs sound nice, but not overly polished," he adds. "With this record, my rule as producer was 'no more than three takes on anything.' Other than a few extra takes on a drum track, we did the whole thing that way. I think we had the capability to pull it off without too much effort and I wanted the record to reflect that."
The six-song mini-album is simple and neat, packaged in a simple color sleeve with a photo of a rock 'n' roller's living room corner, replete with a vintage guitar leaning against a fireplace, new wave flyers on the wall, music mags on the coffee table, and a white banner with the band's name spray-painted across it. On the flipside, a simple listing of songs runs next to the two general bits of band info and "written, recorded, and performed by The Bedrooms," and "recorded, mixed, and mastered at Rebellion Road Studios."
Cassady played for years with The Borrowed Angels and has stayed particularly busy between sessions and gigs with The Bedrooms, playing bass and other instruments with Slow Runner (formerly Michael Flynn) on a number of major tours in support of the Slow Runner album No Disassemble.
With members of The Films as his backing band, Cassady first played as "The Bedrooms" at a gig at Chord & Pedal event at the old Johnny Ola's Anchor Café in West Ashley in Sept. 2004.
"The Films started taking off and doing their thing, so Danny wanted to put a 'band' band together, rather than use a borrowed band," remembers Burg.
In an unusual twist, Cassady plans to relocate to N.Y.C. in the next few weeks. The same guys from the Films who collaborated with him in 2004 are hoping to rejoin as the backing band around the Big Apple this year.
"We didn't record this to try and get signed or make money; we just wanted to have a good time and document some song ideas," says Cassady. "I'll give it to everybody I need to give it to, and hopefully, we'll be able to play when we want to. I definitely don't want to play with anyone other than Jack and Ash in town."