Once upon a time there was man with a gruff, gravel-wash voice who sang punk-ass songs with equal punkful vigor as the frontman of the 90’s much-lauded indie band Archers of Loaf, going on to be one of college radio’s spin-able favorites. The man, Eric Bachmann, was once a saxophone major but quit that after considering that a life as a high school band director wouldn’t be the kind of life for him. Instead, he threw himself into making rock music and playing guitar. After about seven years or so, when his band’s drummer Mark Price was diagnosed with and had surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, Bachmann was left to fly solo.
Not born a quitter, Bachmann landed feet-first into his own music under the name of Crooked Fingers, penning sweet and sad ballads filled with moments of instrumental biopolarity through flourished trumpets and strings. The two songs below are good character sketches of Bachmann’s classic Crooked Fingers sound: “Big Darkness” was released on the album Red Devil Dawn (Merge, 2003) and “Let’s Not Pretend (to be New Men)” is from the band’s latest 2008 release, Forfeit/Fortune. Catch the magic of punk-balladeer storyteller, Bachmann, tonight at Club Garibaldi’s (2501 S. Superior) for a 9 p.m. show. 21+
“Let’s Not Pretend (to be New Men)”