Our man in the moshpit checks in with his latest column on all things punk, “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up.”
I DON’T WANNA GROW UP / JOHN B. MOORE
Small Brown Bike
By John B. Moore
You can’t say the guys in Michigan post-hardcore band Small Brown Bike aren’t doing their part to keep hope alive.
Comprising brothers Mike and Ben Reed, guitarist Travis Dopp and drummer Dan Jaquint, one of the best kept-secrets in punk rock called it quits in 2004 after playing together for more than a decade. They resurfaced for a handful of reunion shows in 2007 and decided to give it another shot with 2011’s Fell & Found.
While the band is not officially broken up now, they are all involved in a number of different projects and spread out across the country. The prospect for a new studio album from Small Brown Bike may be remote – at least for now – but the band is putting out a double LP retrospective on May 28 on Dopp’s own Old Point Light Records. Recollected is crammed with 17 demos, limited releases, covers, unreleased and alternate songs.
Dopp was kind enough to take a few minutes recently to talk about this new album, digging through old demos and the future of the band.
When did you start putting together the Recollected collection?
We started to talk about it after we finished The River Bed. We had an extra song from that record, that got us talking about how many songs/demos were never shared or were only put out on a very limited tape releases (40 copies… maybe). And when I decided to start up Old Point Light -my production company – I wanted to take on Recollected. Almost a year later and here we are. Putting out something that documents Small Brown Bike’s first 15 years as a band.
Did you come across any songs you had completely forgotten about or didn’t remember working on?
Yeah, there were some demos that I totally forgot about. It was more interesting how we arranged those demos and what they eventually became. Mostly the Dead Reckoning demos were very different from the album. The thing that weirded me out the most is when Dan mixed all of the songs – some of the jams I had no idea what it was, cause I’ve never heard the bass sound that way… or never heard them that clear.
Do you plan to do any shows around the release of this album?
As of right now, we don’t. We’re all so busy with our new projects, families, lives and we don’t live near each other. We talked about trying to do something. We’d hate to do something half assed so as of right now, no shows are planned for the release. But for Recollected I’m gonna be running some shows on the Old Point Light website called “The $3 Ticket Show”. This will be old shows that we’ve never shared. Right now I’m working on audio for it… it’ll be in the near future.
I last talked to you guys before the Harvest of Hope show a couple years ago and you were about to go into the studio to record Fell & Found. Have you been working on any new songs together since that album came out?
Unfortunately we haven’t. Mike (Reed) and Dan recorded an album for their new project The Fencemen. I’ve been recording a new record for my new thing Travis John and Dan also recorded another record with his other project White Gold Scorpio. Everyone’s so busy outside of Small Brown Bike.
So after Recollected comes out, what’s next for the band?
Not living in the same area or state makes the writing process or any plans of touring or recording very tough. We’ll be putting out music in our other projects… I feel like we’ll have a chat in the near future and decide what’s next for Small Brown Bike.
Those are all the questions I have. Anything else you want to add?
Recollected will only be available at www.oldpointlight.com. Before May 28th I’ll post the exclusive record stores in the states that will be caring it. Other than that, I’d like to share our appreciation to the friends and fans for sticking around and showing interest. Thank you always.
John B. Moore can be found at : Blurt/New Music Magazine/InSite Atlanta Magazine (Music Editor)/Innocent Words/NeuFutur Magazine. Follow him on Twitter at his handle @Jbmoore00