Everyone has their music that they listen to when they’re feeling especially down about this girl or that guy or when your ex-girlfriend saves over your 70+ hour Skyrim game file – maybe that one’s just me. But when I’m feeling it, and I mean really feeling it, I put on Free Throw. The Nashville emo band, currently signed to the ever pleasing Count Your Lucky Stars Records, hit the road March 5 with fellow emo compatriot, Dowsing, in tow. The month long stint took the band up and down the east coast, playing in a variety of venues from Shea Stadium in Brooklyn, NY to Graveface Records HQ in Savannah, GA.
The band recently released their debut full length after two independent but successful EPs. The album, Those Days are Gone, was released Sept. 16, 2014 and was distributed by Count Your Lucky Stars Records out of Fenton, MI. Combing the twinkling guitars of Tim Kensella bands such as Cap’n Jazz and rough pop punk vocals inspired by bands such as The Wonder Years and Title Fight, the band generates amazing energy both on and off the stage. Their songs are enveloped in crushing lyrics, self-deprecating jabs straight to the heart and all the Undeclared, Boy Meets World and Freaks and Geek audio clips you can handle. The newest album was mixed by Matt Jordan (Cut Teeth, Stay Ahead of the Weather) at Atlas Studios in Chicago, IL.
The show in Savannah was the 26th consecutive show by the touring band. They featured support from local favorites Coeds, tour support Blis, and Graveface’s very own Dott, all the way from Galway, Ireland. The incredibly small record shop was the perfect environment for the basement hopping bands, forming a lovely, intimate setting full of cheap beer, cheap records and surprisingly zen-as-heck bamboo garden in the back.
Dott, a pleasant surprise, performed their first show in Savannah, putting together self stylized “eternal-teen” retro garage pop with absolutely killer bass on top of harmonizing vocals by the band’s front women Anna and Laura. The band’s latest album, Swoon, was released Dec. 3, 2013 through Graceface Records. Bright melodies and catchy choruses aren’t hard to find as the album positively dazzles through the twelve tracks.
Free Throw’s performance was incredibly well put together, as expected. Their guitarist, Jake Hughes, unfortunately suffered a bruised rib from a skateboarding accident, but nevertheless soldiered on, providing back up vocals and one of three twinkling guitars. Their fill-in drummer, Nathan McKinney, taking over for ex-drummer Zach Hall, played very well given his fill-in status, and was even able to play the encore song, much to the crowd’s delight. Corey Castro, guitarist and lead singer, perhaps had a little two much fun with his sample board, firing off random snippets of 90’s theme songs from Frasier and Seinfield as well as the appropriate Undeclared samples used on their Lavender Town EP.
Fortunately, the crowd was packed with fans and the out of key crowd chants were abundant, giving off a warm, if not cheesy, feeling of camaraderie. Free Throw recently finished up the tour with shows in GA and FL, but will hit the road again soon with Topshelf Records’ Prawn and Frameworks in a co-headlining tour from late April into early May. They will also perform at The Wrecking Ball, celebrating the venue The Masquerades’ 25 year anniversary on April 8th and 9th, alongside heavy hitters such as Coheed and Cambria, Thrice, Modern Life is War, Glassjaw and more.