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Friday, October 9,2009

Roaring back

The Cheap Girls release sophomore LP

by Rich Tupica
Lansing’s Cheap Girls are busy guys. The band has released an armful of vinyl in the past couple of years, and now it is set to release its second full length, “My Roaring Twenties,” on Friday, Oct. 9 at Mac’s Bar.

After the release show, The Cheap Girls will hit the road for 30 more shows across the country.


Front man Ian Graham (bass/vocals) describes the new 10-song LP as “College rock for dropouts.”


But make no mistake, behind the band’s slacker sound is a batch of honest lyrics that avoid trite rocker-dude poetry. With influences like The Lemonheads and The Replacements, it’s easy to see how the band avoids silly, modern rock, clich's.


Each track on the album seems to be a legit testament to being a 20-something, and Graham’s nonchalant vocal delivery couldn’t be more perfect for slacker tunes about bad habits and financial problems. His lyrics seem to cover all the bases. “It's really an ‘anything goes’ sort of thing,” Graham said. “It usually just ends up being about surroundings, like my job, some habits, friends, credit cards and whatever else is fairly current.”


Graham said this time in the band’s life inspired the album title. “It was just in reference to having a good time,” he explained. “We’re all in our 20s, we get to go away and play shows quite a bit, we like to show ourselves a good time.”


The tour van isn’t a stranger to Lansing’s favorite alt-rock band, which also features Ben Graham (drums) and Adam Aymor (guitar). Having embarked on multiple tours, including a jaunt in Europe, the guys have become accustomed to the ways of the road.


All of the miles logged have helped Cheap Girls gain some attention from not only underground scenes across the United States, but also the label set to release the upcoming LP, Paper + Plastick Records, in Gainesville, Fla. “The founder is a guy named Vinnie Fiorello; he plays drums in Less Than Jake and has a lot of history with touring and releasing records that are within the crowd we hang out with,” Graham said. “Some of our friends’ bands, like The Swellers, Bomb The Music Industry and The Ergs, had been along on a bunch of [Paper+Plastick’s] tours, and I think he checked it out based on their recommendations.”


Another notable name associated with “My Roaring Twenties” is Rick Johnson, of Grand Rapids ska kings Mustard Plug.


Johnson has recorded all of The Cheap Girls music and was also on board for this album, although the album was recorded at various home studios, including Good Time Gang Records (a local indie label) starting in February 2009. After more than six mixes, the band was satisfied.


“Rick got himself an actual studio towards the end of recording, so we redid bits and pieces there as well, but, I'd say 90 percent of it is a homemade record,” Graham said.


The album will be available through Paper+Plastick’s Web site and at all Lansing-area vinyl shops.


To hear samples of the album, visit www.myspace.com/cheapgirls




The Cheap Girls


LP
Release Party Friday, Oct. 9 9 p.m., $8, 18 w/ The Failures Union, To
Fear the Wolf, The Pop Project Mac’s Bar, 2700 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing



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