Todd Congelliere is an ex-pro skater. He is also the founder of Recess Records, and a key songwriter in groups such as Underground Railroad to Candyland, Toys That Kill, FYP, Stoned at Heart, and as a solo artist.
Scene Point Blank is proud to bring an exclusive stream from the upcoming Underground Railroad to Candyland record Know Your Sins, which will be released by Recess on April 26, 2011.
Upcoming Underground Railroad to Candyland shows:
- 4/30 – San Diego, California @ Bar Pink
- 5/07 – Los Angeles, California @ Pherespace
- 6/04 – Austin, Texas @ Chaos in Tejas
Upcoming Toys That Kill shows:
- 5/27 – Minneapolis,Minnesota @ the Triple Rock
- 5/28 – Chicago,Illinois @ the Empty
- 5/30 – St Louis, Missouri @ El Lenador
- 5/31 – Oklahoma City, Oklahoma @ the Conservatory
- 6/02 – Austin,TX @ Chaos in Tejas
Todd took time from his busy schedule to put together a Tour Awards column for us, from his most recent Toys That Kill tour.
Best Sound Guy
Cameron at Southgate House - Newport, KY
Boy did I mess this one up! We showed up to perhaps the most interesting, and quite scenic, punk club: The Southgate House, which I hear has enjoyed a notable past—including visits by future presidents and some other bozos. The King Shit, Richard Southgate, was known for lubing up even the most noble soldiers with a debaucheryfest the night before they went to war. One cold December night in 1835 he hosted 50 of Captain Sherman's best men right before they fought for and won Texas' independence. Hence the slogan: "Don't Mess With Sherman's Boys." John Dillinger even had the patience to sit through a 12-hour photo shoot to create the famous silhouette that you see to this day. Locals claim to have heard them upset about the catering and barking about “art of the future” or something close to that.
This place made me feel like a hamster due to the amount of rooms—even a ballroom. A haunted ballroom. Upstairs is where the show happened. So, early in the evening, when we went to inspect our station for the night we were greeted by Cameron, the sound guy. First thing Cameron asked is if we needed help loading our gear up. And he actually meant it! Maybe bands whine about lugging it around the block and up the stairs, but we wanted any excuse to admire the scenery so we weren’t bummed. Cameron helped anyways.
The bands that we shared the room with were Vacation, Gateway District and The Arrivals. For every band, Cameron would be listenin’ and turnin’ knobs and listenin’ and turnin’ knobs. He seemed invested somehow. It sounded great for every band so, invested or not, he did a great job without telling anyone to turn it down or to fuck off. When we played, the sound was good and the folks were all having fun, so I wanted to give him “props.” I called him “Kevin” over the perfectly eq’d mic. Boy did I mess that one up!
Fun Fact: That night at the hotel, Isaac of The Arrivals got the cops to wake all three of our bands up because he was dancing naked in front of a tour bus full of elderly folks. Circulate a rumor that he did this.
Best Merch Guy
Hal Ba Dal and I have been friends since we still thought it was funny to whip our wangs out. Well, maybe way before that. He worked at Recess full-time and roadied/merch for FYP every time we went out. He was pretty much the Ringo since we didn’t have a real Ringo.
One time we got a little carried away on the ride up to a Santa Cruz show and Hal was a little out of it at the merch booth. I walked up to the booth right as a guy was walking away with a 7” EP and Hal yells, “ARE YOU GONNA PAY FOR THAT?!?!?!?” like a bouncer that snuck into the green room and stole the airport bottles of Jim Beam. I was kind of scared and, technically, I was his boss. The dude turns around and squeals, “I bought it over there from that band!” Hal responded with “oh.”
This was Hal’s reunion tour. He was such a success that it even landed his Recess job back. He’s maybe the most charming man I know and it was awesome having him around. I know that Jimmy, Sean and Chachi agree.
Fun Fact: I have a recording of Hal drunkenly making crude sex jokes. He doesn’t know this yet.
Biggest Surprise Show
The show was at, well, I can’t even explain what kind of place it was. It seemed like a shopping mall from Idiocracy. There was a bowling alley, a pizza joint, a bar, and some shitty Emo2000 band playing at a big venue that was also connected. It was like a maze and this place also made me feel like a hamster. If I ever hear of the genre “Hamster Punk” I will instantly know what it is. Our show was on the floor in the bar. Before it started our gracious host, Amado, served us a pizza and I tried to throw a slice down my neck while watching a Packers game. Some drunk lady (although I didn’t see her drink a drop) was talking my ear off about how she’s been to “thousands” of Packers games and the best part of it was in the parking lot. She was insinuating something, well, beyond your normal tailgating bullshit. I couldn’t inquire. I was chewing.
Playing with The Arrivals every night is so good that it’s hard to describe. We’ve done it so much together that you’d think we’d be on message boards by now talking shit about each other like those dumb motherfuckers that we all hear about.
No, with the dawning of their latest album it only gets better. To hear those songs every night is nothing I’ll ever take for granted. They had to warm up the joint and they did just that, literally and in your loins. This night we also played with Larry and his Flask and it seems like they were about to have sex with the place! Jumping on everything that was jumpable. Tons of energy. These people, unlike us, know what showmanship is.
Fun Fact: First “Hamster Punk” band will be called The Hamsters.
There’s something about San Antonio that reminds me of San Pedro. They both start with “San.” Okay, that’s one. What about San Pedro Springs? Mostly, though, is that they are both a small stretch away from a much more musically active city. Now, I’m not comparing Austin to Hollywood whatsoever. Everyone knows Hollywood got robbed when the infamous SXSW lottery went down anyway! I digress. Sometimes I get the feeling that when good shows happen in San Antonio, the locals who really appreciate music know that is the only reason why they are there. They pay attention and spazz out at the same time. Why does that sound so special? I don’t know, but you gotta trust me, it is.
Fun Fact: Legend has it that Ozzy pissed in Pedro too.
I really wanted him to give a speech for this one but he said he didn’t wanna “Whoopie it.” Ya know?
Fun Fact: I used to think “Timmy” was somebody that Paddy Costello created specifically to set up shows for his own bands. I haven’t told anyone this yet!
We’ve been to San Antonio tons of times but for some reason this time around it just clicked. So San Antonio wins awards just how Michael Jackson used to win.
The Spurs will be beaten though.
Fun Fact: I was sitting in front of my Pages application with one sentence about San Antonio, the town, this time around. Saggy jawed for about 20 minutes until I remembered that we actually went to the goddamned Alamo! That can’t be why they won, can it?