Sound Advice: Dressy Bessy with Serenity Fisher and the Cardboard Hearts and The Invisible Strings

Thursday • Southgate House Revival (Revival Room)

click to enlarge Dressy Bessy
Dressy Bessy

In the time since Dressy Bessy was a consistently active band, MySpace has gone from a top online community site to virtual haunted house. Because of social media’s seismic shift, Tammy Ealom knows there’s work ahead in getting the word out on Dressy Bessy’s new album, Kingsized, the sugary Pop band’s triumphant sixth studio effort, its first since 2008.

“We didn’t even have a Facebook page back then,” the guitarist/vocalist says. “All this stuff has come up since we’ve been out of the scene. We’re having to build it back up.”

Eight years ago, Dressy Bessy released Holler and Stomp to less than enthusiastic critical reviews that ranged from lukewarm to hateful. The album’s unfairly harsh reception, combined with low tour attendance, would have ended lesser bands, but Ealom has a rare gift for perspective.

“To be honest, I didn’t know there were any reviews at all,” she says. “We’d been hitting it hard for 10 years. When Holler and Stomp came out, it was the cusp of the housing crash, gas prices were sky high and turnout was lackluster because nobody could afford to do anything. We didn’t sit down and say it, but we decided to take a break.”

Subsequently, Ealom and guitarist/vocalist/significant other John Hill expanded their Denver home studio, Ealom’s father passed away and bassist Rob Greene amicably left the band. With Greene’s 2014 departure, Ealom did some soul-searching, which inspired a torrent of songs that ultimately became Kingsized.

With Kingsized, Ealom, Hill and drummer Craig Gilbert — plus guests like Peter Buck, Scott McCaughey, Rebecca Cole and Andy Shernoff — bring a tougher, darker edge to Dressy Bessy’s standard bubblegum snap and bounce.

“We’ve been considered this cutesy thing, and I’ll take some of the blame. I do the visuals, and I’m drawn to cute shit,” Ealom says. “Cute isn’t something you learn; you embrace it or you don’t. We’ve always felt like we were a rocking fucking band.”

Find tickets/more info here.

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