The Slants, Fortune's Folly, Tyler Morin Band

September 2, 2017 - 9:00pm

On Saturday, September 2, the Community Center for the Performing Arts and University of Oregon Campus Radio 88.1 FM KWVA proudly welcome Portland’s The Slants with special guests Fortune’s Folly and the Tyler Morin Band.

Last month, The Slants made history by winning a major case at the Supreme Court unanimously. The band was featured on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, VICE News, a major Rolling Stone story, SPIN, Pitchfork, and over 50 stories on NPR.  Beyond that, the world's first and only all-Asian American dance rock band has been touring for the past 11 years, building a broad base of fans across the U.S from headlining showcases at SXSW and Comic-Con as well as playing for Conan O'Brien's Team Coco.

Calling their sound “Chinatown Dance Rock”, The Slants play 80's inspired synth pop and indie rock.  Band members are Simon "Young" Tam (bass), Ken Shima (vocals), Joe X. Jiang (guitar) and Yuya Matsuda (drums).

For their third full-length release, The Yellow Album, the band continued in the vein of creating an album charged with energy and shaped by an intensity gained only from frequent touring. It’s the sound of a band that understands its roots but isn't afraid to branch out. The result is an album that explores the dichotomy between darker undertones and the thrills of new love.

The Yellow Album could be a natural progression from either 2010's Pageantry or their 2007 debut Slanted Eyes, Slanted Hearts. Musically, it draws from the wider synthesizer driven palette of the first album while retaining the harder hitting rock sounds of the second.  The lyrics explore the personal lives and experiences of the members of the band.

During the past two years, The Slants had to balance a rigorous international touring schedule, a lineup change, writing songs for the album, keeping personal relationships from falling apart, fundraising for the tsunami relief effort in Japan, and a fight with the United States Patent and Trademark Office that made headlines across both legal blogs and Asian culture outlets.

"We were pulled into an unexpected struggle," explains founder and bassist Simon Young.  "A touring band has enough to worry about, let alone an international disaster involving friends and family or dealing with a legal battle against the United States government."

The trademark battle was sparked by a government attorney's claim that the band's name was disparaging to Asians. "It was like banging our head against the wall, trying to convince someone that we were not offensive to ourselves, that the community was in overwhelming support of our band."

Despite the frustration, Young used the opportunity to bring an entire community together in order to defeat the poorly written, antiquated laws that were affecting numerous minority groups.  The title track "Yellow" reflects the constriction experienced by the band.  The juxtaposition of a tongue-in-cheek album title and some deeply serious songs reflect a band that can still embrace tragedy with a punk rock swagger.

With The Yellow Album The Slants continue to combine their 80s music heritage, floor-filling dance beats, and cultural experiences that provide the backbone for every note.  The result is a collection of undeniably catchy songs that will make you want to dance.  However, this album will also resonate with you, providing so much more than an enticing chorus.  

The Slants manage to combine heart and musicality, a combination that is becoming increasingly rare.

FORTUNE'S FOLLY

Fortune’s Folly is a female-fronted rock band electrifying the Oregon music scene.  Band members are Calysta Cheyenne (vocals), Ira Mazie (guitar), Jesse Sanchez (bass) and Alex 'Squatch' Koleber (drums).

Hailing from Eugene, Fortune’s Folly formed in 2014. This professional, innovative group has proven the ability to generate devoted fans after a single experience, and is optimistic about a future of new music, touring, and continued enthusiasm.

“The band will give you the warm and fuzzy (guitar) feeling of those mid-90s female fronted alt-rock bands like The Breeders and No Doubt,” reports Jared Rasic in The Source Weekly. “Lead singer Calysta Cheyenne has so much range that she can remind you of the late Sharon Jones on one song while wailing like Gwen Stefani on the next.”

Before Fortune’s Folly, Koleber and Sanchez were touring in another project but wanted to go in a different musical direction.  They teamed up with guitarist Ira Mazie and after an hour of jamming decided they had something good going.

"Fast forward 10 months and about a dozen songs later when we decided we wanted to recruit a female vocalist that would fit our sound," says Koleber. "A last ditch effort inspired a Craigslist ad and Calysta responded within a few days.  We sent her some demos, met her a week later and have been together ever since."

From there, the band started playing small clubs and branching out regionally -- developing an audience in and out of town.  Then Fortune’s Folly topped Hi-Fi Music Hall’s Sun-Sets Summer Concert Series, winning recording time at Track Town Studios.

Cheyenne calls the band’s sound “high-energy rock” with “elements of funk.”

“Overall, Fortune’s Folly exudes a patently Millennial sense of optimism that is made for outdoors summer music festivals,” reports Eugene Weekly’s William Kennedy.

Cheyenne writes all her band’s vocal melodies and says Fiona Apple and Tracy Chapman inspire her lyrics.

“I like to write creatively,” she explains. “A lot of my songs are personal, inspired by personal events, feelings that I’m having.”  She says the band’s focus on performance has helped Fortune’s Folly build a loyal local audience.  “I like to make sure everyone’s having fun -- smiling, dancing and feeling comfortable.  I try to communicate as much as I can with the audience.”

 

TYLER MORIN BAND

 

Tyler Morin is a singer/songwriter/guitarist from Eugene.  He began learning guitar at the age of 18, sparked by an early interest in his fathers acoustic guitar playing. He performs mostly original songs that deal with love, pain, anger, hardship, persistence, tolerance, patience and everyday struggles, while also pondering the ambiguities and unanswered questions of our lives.

Most of Tyler’s songs are introspective and deal with matters of the "self" in order to show that most meaningful answers and aspects of life come from inner space, or from within.  Heavily influenced by the music of the 60's -- from blues/R&B/Soul to Hendrix and SRV --and combining elements of jazz and pop, Tyler Morin Band forms a unique blend of styles.

Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door.  Doors open at 8:00 pm and showtime is 9:00.

 

 

Door Time: 
September 2, 2017 - 8:00pm
Cost: 
$10 Advance, $12 Day of Show