In fall 2008, Denver-based band Git Some kicked off its European tour with the following pro-wrestling-style announcement via its blog: "We are gonna spill our guts in ancient cities! We are gonna throw-up blood, chunks, and rock-n-roll on the pretty shoes of you people! We will cough up filthy, perverted guitar chords! You won't smell the same as when you showed up to see us!"
A year later, in August 2009, the provocative band made one of its more rock and roll moves by temporarily shutting down the ninth annual Total Fest—Missoula's independent music festival—when its over-throttled amps caused not one, but two electrical outages.
- Git Some features, from left, Chuck French, Andrew Lindstrom, Luke Fairchild and Neil Keener.
All this mayhem, plus a quick listen of the band's latest bombastic album, Loose Control, would lead you to believe the group is nothing more than a gang of furious misanthropes carelessly wielding instruments like household knives. But the truth is, Git Some's lead vocalist Luke Fairchild feels a touch bad about the whole Total Fest incident. He has fond memories of Missoula (for those still using MySpace you can see the band's tour schedule with a luminous announcement in pink letters saying, "Git Some Loves Missoula!") and his past trips to Total Fest with former band Kingdom of Magic beat out other experiences, including the popular SXSW festival in Austin.
"Total Fest is probably my favorite festival," he says. "Lots of great bands, great backyard barbecues and hanging out with friends. There's really nothing else like that anywhere else."
According to guitarist Chuck French, touring is essential to Git Some, since the band's emphasis is on stage antics. But traveling around in a van also keeps the Git Some bandmates from getting restless.
"Being on the road keeps us from going insane," French says. "After being in a touring band for years, you get accustomed to getting in the van, and so if we don't tour for a few months, we all get froggy. And we need to jump, so to speak."
Being on the road can be hard work, but for Git Some, it's actually a vacation. At home, Fairchild and French each work three different bartending jobs, bassist Neil Keener does his duty as a barista, and drummer Andrew Lindstrom gives lessons at the local Guitar Center. Add to that all the members' music side-projects and you've got some busy dudes who admit they find sleeping on a stranger's floor and eating Deli Express roast beef sandwiches a relaxing bit of fun.
The current tour finds the band rolling with a group that quite possibly rates as the spookiest folk-rock outfit of all time, Woven Hand. (Unfortunately, Woven Hand will be skipping Missoula and heading from Bozeman to Pullman, Wash.) This past summer Woven Hand opened for the radio-friendly Tool on tour. The chance to tour with musicians that are one remove from one of the biggest heavy bands in the world is an opportunity that Fairchild says the band was unwilling to pass up, regardless of the fact that it is January in the Rocky Mountains and La Niña is in full effect.
Git Some isn't just riding the coattails of other bands. The release of Loose Control on Alternative Tentacles means it joins an elite list of iconic punk and post-punk groups such as NoMeansNo, SNFU and D.O.A. on the label owned by legendary Dead Kennedys' frontman Jello Biafra. To say that the band is stoked to be a part of the Alternative Tentacles family is an understatement, says Fairchild—though the honor doesn't come without strings attached. Apparently Biafra spends plenty of time at the band's Denver shows—his parents live in Boulder, Col.—and, as a man known for not holding back on his opinion, Biafra sometimes has a few minor critiques for the band.
According to Fairchild, Biafra often asks, "Why don't you have any choruses?" and, "How come you never look at the audience?"
To which Fairchild replies, "Well, Jello, I'm sorry."
Because, really, what else can you say to one of the great punk rock icons/curmudgeons of all time?
In the end, the band does what it wants, and the tone of Loose Control mirrors the band's incorrigible attitude. The album is a full-throated, post-punk beat-down. Grim, crushing guitars pop, grind and squeal with forlorn energy, and the gnashing, aggressive bass lines and juiced up, roided-out drumming evokes the Jesus Lizard and Big Black. The lyrics, often delivered in a driving mid-throat wail, are dark and abstract to reflect the music. Song titles like "Entrails for the Altar" and "There is So Much Blood" might best describe the band's power-outage sound, but it's the title of the last song, "Bought the Ticket, Take the Ride," that, according to Fairchild, best describes the band's trajectory.
"We asked for this," he says. "And there's no turning back."
Git Some plays the Palace Wednesday, Jan. 19, at 9 PM with Tidal Horn, Judgment Hammer and Lb. $6.