Business As Usual

30th Anniversary Rock'N'Roll Tour


Guitarist/producer/record company head Gregg Kostelich is the frenetic force behind the garage-punk institution that is The Cynics, formed in 1983. He managed to keep the band afloat in the wake of constant personnel changes, he recorded some of the finest garage tracks ever, and also launched one of the best independent record labels of the 1980s. The Cynics’ style has been clear since their inception: fuzzed ultra-distorted guitar, screaming, moaning vocals, with a straight-ahead no frills rhythm section. The influences are '60s punk, R&B, and other loud, frantic trash. Gregg has occasionally steered the band into flirtations with folk-rock and little pop, but it’s the grunged-out punkers that have created The Cynics’ reputation. Their first two 45s were released by the Californian Dionysus label, but soon after Gregg had established his own Pittsburgh-based Get Hip Recordings who would release all of The Cynics albums and singles, as well as those by countless great garage, punk-rock and power-pop releases by other bands from around the globe.  

Though Gregg’s guitar is the backbone of the band, vocalist Michael Kastelic’s contribution to The Cynics sound cannot be underestimated. In concert (and on record) he screeches, wails, and moans with great abandon, while his frail, thin body shakes throughout the room. Michael is a truly possessed frontman.

Friday, August 16th at Gran Torino
131 Berry Street, Brooklyn U.S.A.
Doors at 10PM. $12 - $15 *. 21+ with ID.

Faded Memory


“Sometimes you gotta get lost to be found”

Taking an unexpected trip to LA set the stage for Ryan Luce’s debut EP, California Gold. Driving through Arizona to the city of angels, he encountered the vast plains and mountains of the southwest. Encountering truckers, runaways, and hustlers gave Ryan material to tell stories of life, love, and loss. Taking a songwriting class from Louise Goffin at the legendary Village Studios started the journey to write the title track of two young kids setting out anew, hoping for the best ("California Gold"). Standing at a bus stop in early spring he wrote a song about a couple splitting up with a two step beat ("Loner Tendencies"). From there a showing of the the late '70s flick, The Rose inspired him to write about being a musician and the love, you may have after being out on the road ("Secondhand Rose"). The album opener ("Faded Memory") has been with Ryan the longest, written in the span of 20 minutes, he has continued to sing a song about a father’s dreams dashed and a son that grew into a man.

Over the last year he has been joined on stage by friends, DM Salsberg (keys), Matt Sapp (bass), Omer Ashano (violin), and Waverly Langston (drums), opening for Dan Layus and The Last Bandoleros. Over the course of three winter days Ryan and his band recorded at Grand St. Recording with engineer, Jake Lummus. Along with pedal steel player Ron Raymond, they have crafted songs that stretch out into the vast western sky.

Saturday, July 20th at Littlefield
635 Sackett Street, Brooklyn U.S.A.
Doors at 6PM. $10*. 21+ with ID.

Diamond Times


Great Lakes formed in 1996 in Athens, Georgia and released a self-titled debut in 2000. Though fronted by Ben Crum since its inception, the band has always enjoyed the contributions of a rotating cast of accomplished collaborators. Their debut benefitted from contributions by members of Neutral Milk Hotel, Olivia Tremor Control, Elf Power, of Montreal and many others, and garnered strong reviews from Mojo, Uncut, and many others, which led to festival appearances in Europe and a slot opening for Belle & Sebastian. After Crum left Athens for New York in 2002 the band went through several iterations, releasing three more albums and a handful of singles and touring the US a couple times and Europe many times. The list of collaborators grew to include a host of players who had made names for themselves with the likes of Talibam!, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Beirut, The Ladybug Transistor and many others. While their debut and 2002’s The Distance Between established Great Lakes' reputation as accomplished purveyors of top-notch late 60s-inspired psychedelic pop, over time the band’s sound shifted towards more organic and natural instrumentation, beginning with 2006’s Diamond Times and continuing with 2010’s Ways Of Escape, and increasingly incorporated more folk and country music influences as the songs veered away from the whimsical psychedelia of the band's early records and began to take on a greater degree of emotional depth. Great Lakes' more recent albums have been praised by Magnet, Allmusic, No Depression, and many others. A fifth LP is currently in the mixing stage, and is expected to see release in 2014. All of the band's albums are available from Orange Twin Records.

Friday, June 14th at Hank's
345 Adams Street, Brooklyn U.S.A.
Doors at 9PM. $10. 21+ with ID.

Lost Days


Steak is founding members Erik Lieblein on rhythm guitar/vocals, Jack Grace on lead guitar/vocals, Stu Damm on drums, and occasionally founding member TJ Thomas on bass with Larry Cook and Daniel Garcia also sharing the bass chair. Their first fans developed from the Boulder, Colorado music scene in 1992 which included bands like The Samples, Big Head Todd and The Monsters Leftover Salmon and many others. The band played a "sarcastic latin/funk with everything including the kitchen sink kinda style" (Colorado Daily) and quickly developed a Colorado/West Coast underground group of followers. The word on their 'silly yet clever in a refreshing manner" (SF Weekly) stage show kept spreading and Steak began traveling California with the magical cult band, The Beat Farmers for a stretch. The road continued with a diverse pedigree of bands that included NRBQ, Uncle Tupelo, Aquarium Rescue Unit, Fishbone, The Funky Meters, Leo Nocentelli and Zigaboo Modeliste,  Steak got a tour bus and lived on the road for a few years, relocating to San Francisco and eventually basing themselves from Jack, Erik and Stu's birthplace of New York City. Steak is internationally renowned primarily for it's song, "Big Bear" which is featured in the climax of the Fox Searchlight comedy hit, Super Troopers (along with another Steak track, "Second To The Bottle").

Thursday, June 13th at Hank's
46 Third Avenue (at Atlantic), Brooklyn, U.S.A.
Doors at 9PM. $10 cover. 21+ with ID. *

* show cancelled.

Or Just Call It Love


Somewhere between Miles Davis, Funkadelic, Lee "Scratch" Perry and Sun Ra lies The Perfect Man, an exploration of funky, sensual, heavy, and far out sounds designed for psychedelic mind-expansion. Led by Smoota on electric trombone, the band features the synth wizardry of Yusuke Yamamoto, the passionate guitar of Ricky Quiñones, and the deep rhythm section of Jeremy Wilms and Chris Eddleton. Smoota plays with art-rock band TV On The Radio and has recorded and toured the world with his solo act and as a trombonist for Run The Jewels, Steven Tyler, Aaron Neville, Sufjan Stevens, Pretty Lights, Griz, Phish, Angelique Kidjo and many others.

This show is part of Dead Flowers Productions new free Wednesday Happy Hour series of shows at Hank's Saloon, this event is co-presented by SlamJunk.

Wednesday, June 12th at Hank's
345 Adams Street, Brooklyn U.S.A.
Doors at 6:30PM. No cover. 21+ with ID.