The boys of Telekinesis were in town last month to play the inaugural A.V. Fest at Chicago's mighty Hideout. They were kind enough to stop by and play a few songs for us here at saki while they were in town.
Since its eponymous debut on Merge Records in 2009, Telekinesis’ has been Michael Lerner's primary vehicle for his talents as a drummer, singer and songwriter in the great power-pop traditions of Robert Pollard and Alex Chilton.
Telekinesis’ latest effort for Merge,12 Desperate Straight Lines, sees Lerner teaming up with Death Cab For Cutie’s Chris Walla on production for the second time. This time around, Lerner and Walla have found the sweet spot between hooky pop songwriting and just the right amount of rough-hewn punk energy. Lerner's drums are much more prominent and dance floor ready, and the guitar volume is turned up to the proverbial "eleven."
Telekinesis’ touring lineup includes Illinois native Jason Narducy on bass and Cody Votolato (of The Blood Brothers and Jaguar Love) on guitar. While the slight pop-punk tendencies that show through on 12 Desperate Straight Lines may not be the product of Narducy and Votolato's input, they certainly do a great job accentuating them in Telekinesis’ live show. If Lerner is the heart of this band in the studio and on stage, Narducy and Votolato are its wildly flailing limbs. They bring an energy to the live show that really make Lerner's pop gems stand out.
The band only had time to play a few songs for us before running over to the Hideout in time to catch the Thermals -- and really, who could blame them? They left us with a perfect summation of Telekinesis’ sound: Short, simple, sweet, and brimming with a youthful pop energy. True to the old showbiz adage, “Always leave them wanting more,” Telekinesis certainly did it for us. We’ve had their record on repeat since they left. It ends too soon every time, and we think that’s a very good thing!
Special thanks to Michael, Jason, Cody and the lovely folks at Merge Records for facilitating this opportunity.