Living in Dayton, Ohio throughout the summertime is pretty standard. You have the ability to enjoy the sun longer than the other seasons. Kids are outdoors longer. People take their much needed vacations more often during this period of time. The local and private pools are visited frequently. Cookouts replace cooking indoors. We celebrate the nation’s birthday by gathering around and watching fireworks litter the night’s sky. There is a sense of freedom when it comes to the season.
Another summer staple is the rising temperatures. A recent Tuesday evening provided uncomfortable conditions. The sweltering heat wave that Dayton was experiencing didn’t let loose of its grip. In town, six individuals gathered together in a small locale that didn’t provide any escape. The meeting spot had two air conditioners. One was in a small area where a beaten down, black leather couch sat. In the same space was a computer and soundboard for recording. As you walk out of the small area and into the larger section of the room, another air conditioner sits atop the wall farther down at the end. There are three fans that are scattered about. Two of them are your typical pedestal fans. Sadly, they have become decorations because they no longer work. The other fan is a box version and its down at the other side of the room. The lime green color makes it look like it’s been rocking and rolling since the early 70s. The heat inside the space was unreal. The ice cold cans of Miller Lite helped some, but it wasn’t going to solve the problem. The heat wave had taken over the room. However, the group that consisted of six individuals couldn’t care less. The collection of people was myself and the Dayton rock band, Motel Beds.
Guitarists Tommy Cooper and Darryl Robbins, drummer Ian Kaplan, singer PJ Paslosky, and bassist Tod Weidner make up Motel Beds. This Saturday, the band will be releasing their 2011 album Sunfried Dreams. The reissue will be released on CD and for the first time on vinyl. The LP will include a bonus track. The band will be having a show at Blind Bob’s in the Oregon District. Joining Motel Beds will be The Harlequins, Speaking Suns, and Holy Smokes. Label and design studio Brain Candy will helping with the release of the special release. “The guys over there love the album and wanted to do something special”, Kaplan explained when asked why this album was choose above the others.
Motel Beds was formed in 2003, with the Kaplan, Paslosky, Cooper, and bassist John Lakes. The band released their first EP, Hasta Mañana. Hasta Mañana features dreamy, surf rock songs that are driven with acoustic guitar play. The band would dissolve in 2005, and remerged in 2009, with Robbins joining the group. That same year, the band released a much different sounding EP, the rock heavy Go For A Dive. Shortly after that, Moondazed was released. The 29 song, lo-fi album ranges from rough demos to polished rock gems that show the band’s range bouncing all over. In 2011, Weidner joined the band and the group marched forward by releasing Feelings, an fantastic collection of indie rock songs that continue to highlight the band’s continuing growth at that time.
Immediately following Feelings is the album that will be celebrated this Saturday night at Blind Bob’s. Sunrise Dreams is the band’s most solid and most different to this point in their musical journey. “It was one of the fastest and most fun albums we have done”, Robbins mentions. “Everything just came together smoothly with this album”. The album’s sound shows the band reaching back to their first EP, and expanding it. The songs on the album each have a blend of influence from 60s rock to garage rock. ‘Western Son’ is a slow moody song that will creep up on you without notice with Paslosky’s vocals. ‘Bat Naps’ has a British punk rock feel to it. The influence of The Clash roars through the song with the resounding drum play of Kaplan and the thrashing guitar play of Robbins and Cooper. To continue with the British rock theme, ‘Obey Your Lunch’ really highlights that. The Who-influenced track really shows off Weidner’s bass playing skills. Sunrise Dreams is truly a beautifully made album that is destined to be a staple for vinyl lovers.
Motel Beds didn’t stop working on perfecting their craft with Sunfried Dreams, which started to see some critical acclaim throughout the US. In the same year, the band released another marvel Tango Boys. Tango Boys is a quick, 34-minute album that resembles what you come to expect with another band that Dayton calls their own. Some of you may have heard them-Guided By Voices. Once again, Tango Boys is filled with British punk, but an added element of lo-fi and hi-fi presents the album with a different spin. The album also features local Daytonian/guitarist for the alternative rock band The Breeders Kelley Deal on the song ‘Tropics Of The Sand’. The song with Deal got spun extensively on Sirius XM, nationwide on terrestrial radio stations, and gave the band a chance to perform at 2011’s CMJ Music Marathon, 2012’s SXSW, and the 2012 Downtown Dayton Revival Festival. Dumb Gold is their recent album, having been released last year. Dumb Gold continues to showcase the band’s growth. Staying true to their British indie influences, Dumb Gold keeps pushing the envelope. ‘Smoke Your Homework’ is an exemplary garage rock song. Dumb Gold just proves that the band continues to strive to be a better band with each album.
The band strives to make sure that their music is as accessible as possible. “You can easily find most of our music all over the internet”, Weidner says. “YouTube is amazing. It truly is one of the best search engines to find music”, added Kaplan. “If you have someone tell you about a band, you can easily go to the website and find all this music on that band. It’s so easy to have your music on there.” The band stands by that statement by doing what most local bands don’t do-present music videos. One of the recent music videos the band released was for ‘Smoke Your Homework’. The video shows the band visiting a neighborhood, and looking into purchasing some equipment from a creepy man. The humorous video is one of many videos that are easily accessible videos that you can find from the band.
Another exciting event will be coming up soon for Motel Beds other than the reissue of Sunfried Dreams this Saturday. On August 27th, the band will perform at the Fraze Pavilion in Kettering, Ohio. The outdoor amphitheater will be one of the greatest accomplishments that the band has experienced. The venue will also give folks from all walks to come and witness a local band taking the stage at larger scale. “It’s going to be a true honor to be playing there”, Kaplan said.
Motel Beds are one of the many bands in Dayton to continue to be another reason for music to be noticed in town. Saturday night, the reissue release party of Sunfried Dreams will be happening at Blind Bob’s Bar. Showtime is 9pm. For more details, click on the Dayton Most Metro event calendar link here.