Thursday, August 2, 2007

The Catheters

The Catheters formed in 1995 in Bellevue, Washington. After switching drummers with another band, the main line-up was formed with Brian Standeford on vocals, Derek Mason on guitar, Dave Brozowski on drums, and Paul Waude on bass. The Catheters was a band who's sound seemed to be constantly evolving. In their early years they were bratty teenage punks, their music was akin to something you would have heard out of LA in the mid-'80s. Their debut single in 1997 on Beer City captures this with both the sound and artwork. But the band's sound started getting more rock, thanks in part to band members being into the sound coming from Seattle's Murder City Devils. I remember seeing them for the first time at the Black Cat in the U-District and totally catching that transition... they had more of a rock sound than the recorded stuff I'd heard and Derek from the MCDs was hyping them to me. In 1998 the band recruited local scenester Lars Swenson and added him as a second guitarist, further pushing their music in the direction of '70s rock and glam. The next year they released a single on Empty Records called "The Kids Know How To Rock" that pretty much threw them into the local spotlight, their debut album followed on Empty the same year. The band went on to have a few line up changes and release quite a few EPs and albums on Sub Pop, each record pushing more in the rock direction, which while sounding excellent, did leave behind a lot of their earlier fans. Me included, I loved their Empty releases and the first album on Sub Pop, but then they seemed to lose most of their edge to me. In October of 2004 the band finally called it quits, playing one crazy kick-ass show at Ballard's Sunset Tavern (with Blackbelt and The Vells).

Brian and Davey went on to form the Tall Birds. Lars went on to become a male model.

Discography
No Escape 7" (Beer City, 1997)
The Kids Know How To Rock 7" (Empty, 1999)
The Catheters LP (Empty, 1999)
Put It Together 7" (Sub Pop, 1999)
It Can't Stay This Way 7" (Kapow, 2000)
Build A Home 7" (Sub Pop, 2001)
Static Delusions and Stone-Still Days LP (Sub Pop, 2002)
3000 Ways ep CD (Sub Pop, 2002)
I Fall Easy 7" (Sub Pop, 2002)
Howling... It Grows and Grows LP (Sub Pop, 2004)
No Natural Law ep CD (Sub Pop, 2004)

2 comments:

Nathaniel said...

I was definitely one of those kids who lost interest after they started going more rock. I remember reading an interview with them in The Stranger in which they talked about classic 70's rock being some of the best rock out there. I think that was the final nial in the coffin for me.

Matt Huffer said...

I have to say, I'm on the opposite side of the fence here. The last Catheters album (Howling...It Grows and Grows)blew me away. Not only do I think of it as their best effort by far, I hadn't been that excited about a rock release in a long, long time. Intense but groovy beats, wild noise, concise songwriting, and great lyrics. Way more "No Wave" than "Classic Rock" in my book.