It's only rock 'n' roll
The New Hotness celebrate life and music at the Buccaneer Friday night
By Bliss Bowen 05/23/2013
Bands ride along on waves of interest generated by promoters and fans, building up mini circuits of venues where they regularly perform until they become such regular fixtures on the local scene that they can be taken for granted. And then a lot of them go away — either because they’ve worn out their welcome, or they’re undergoing personnel changes, or because they’re touring or seeking greener pastures.
In the case of one local indie rock band well known to habitués of the Old Towne Pub, T. Boyle’s Tavern and past Rose City Rock festivals, life slowed down the pace of their gig schedule with the demands of day jobs as well as recording. The New Hotness is a group of old friends — frontman and bandleader Erik Newton, guitarist Toby Semain, bassist John Kirst and drummer Jared Summerell. The band has been rocking local stages for 10 years. In their early days they also worked Hollywood’s Sunset Strip showcases (the Roxy, the Whisky, et al.) and won a battle of the bands competition to play Germany’s Taubertal Music Festival in 2007. Their momentum slowed after the release of their 2006 album “I Found Healing in My Rock N Roll,” a polished set that seemed aimed at radio. They placed some music with TV shows but weren’t as ubiquitous a presence at local clubs.
They recently finished recording another album, which they plan to release by summer. United by shared history and a mutual love of guitar-driven classic and modern rock a la Cream, Foo Fighters and Queens of the Stone Age, they’ve been posting new and vintage tracks on their Soundcloud page. They will likely break out “Keep It Secret” and other new material this Friday when they return to the Buccaneer Lounge for a gig they promise will be “epic.”
The fast approaching 35th birthdays of Newton and Kirst provided the impetus for Friday’s festivities. In addition to the band’s performance, there will be special guests, plenty of jokes and possibly embarrassing stories. Oh, and vinyl. The Buccaneer is known to locals for its Vinyl Nights, and there will be an old-school record player on the premises this weekend; fans and friends are encouraged to bring some vinyl to spin.
The New Hotness with Blac Jesus & the Experimentalists play the Buccaneer Lounge, 70 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre, 9 p.m. Friday, May 24. Free admission. Info: (626) 355-9045. facebook.com/thenewhotnessrocks