Sound Advice: North By North Joins Cincinnati-Based Bands Fruit LoOops and Dearest for a Raucous Good Time

The three bands are performing at MOTR Pub on April 29.

click to enlarge North By North performing - PHOTO: NORTH BY NORTH FACEBOOK PAGE
Photo: North by North Facebook Page
North By North performing

By their own count, Chicago Garage Rock duo North By North has been booked for nearly 800 shows since 2016, performing almost nightly on their marathon tours. The band’s third album Get Weird — released in 2020 — offers a more fleshed-out glimpse of their raucous live sound.

Sharing Bluesy, nostalgic inclinations with The White Stripes and Thee Oh Sees, the record is laden with sinister chord progressions and wriggling organ tones, providing an appropriately spooky backdrop for their reverb-soaked vocals.

During live performances, their approach is stripped back to guitar and drums, putting added emphasis on vocalist and guitarist Nate Girard’s theatrical delivery.

Unfettered by the restraints of spelling, capitalization and music theory, Cincinnati quintet Fruit LoOops molds a similar raw energy in their own twisted image. Led by frontperson Jackie Switzer, the band’s anarchic spirit recalls the collision of Post-Punk and New Wave in the late ’70s, when acts like X-Ray Spex and Suburban Lawns imbued the underground with skronky snark.

Fresh off of a tour with Kenyan metal duo Duma, they’ve returned to their home city with a signature blend of live music and Dadaist performance art.

Five-piece band Dearest, also based in Cincinnati, is the youngest and most melodically-minded act on this bill. Though they’ve yet to release a full album, the three singles the band dropped over the course of 2021 showcase Dearest’s affinity for vocal harmonies and memorable riffs. “Honey” is the best of the bunch: a breezy Pop tune with an instrumental refrain that harkens back to late ’00s Indie anthems — there’s no shortage of chiming guitars and woah-oh-ohs.

North by North, Fruit LoOops and Dearest will perform on April 29 at MOTR Pub. The show starts at 10 p.m. Free admission. More info: motrpub.com

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