Monday 14 Jul

Admirals - Amidst the Blue

Sometimes it helps to not be very good.

Some of the best albums and artists were born out of happy accidents owed to varying degrees of early suckage — the perfect note or chord for a song found by missing the one you are aiming for, failed mimicry of an idol bearing something entirely new and great instead.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Kierston White - Don't Write Love Songs

The Tequila Songbirds have become just as beloved as about any group around these parts. And how could they not?

Featuring a revolving cast of the Sooner State’s most badass female performers, it’s a power hour of some of the best songwriting coming out of central Oklahoma. Sure, they might not technically be family, but they are clearly a band of sisters all the same, bonded by the same brand of whiskey running through their veins.

07/01/2014 | Comments 0

Depth & Current - Dysrhythmia

"Overproduced" is a term thrown around all too indiscreetly nowadays, usually applied when the thing that sticks out about a song or album is how it sounds rather than how it is constructed. Yet some of the most compelling albums ever crafted embodied a certain aesthetic that was just as skillfully and meticulously put together as any Bob Dylan or Miles Davis record — which is to say production is as crucial to our enjoyment of music as much as anything else; it's also the most overlooked.
06/24/2014 | Comments 0

Weak Knees - “IceBevo”

Indie rock has been in a good place as of late. Not caring about being cool is the new cool, and a couple of dudes on guitar, bass and drums can make catchy, earworm songs without being armed to the gills with computer software and vintage synthesizers.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0

Kyle Reid & the Low Swinging Chariots - “When I Was Young”

Every artist should be the star of their own creative life, which makes Kyle Reid’s steps out of the shadows of the many ensembles and supporting roles he has played in Oklahoma bands over the years to front and center on stage feel like a just journey.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Taking aim

Taking aim

Its members may keep falling, but Handguns keeps shooting its brand of pop punk to targeted audiences.

Joshua Boydston August 17th, 2011

Handguns with The American Scene
6 p.m. Friday
Brass Bell Studios
2500 N.W. 33rd

To say this has been a trying summer for Pennsylvania punk band Handguns would be an understatement.

“Touring has been total hell,” said founder and guitarist Jake Langley. “My singer quit, our drummer quit, we got a new drummer, he quit, and somehow, we are still here. I don’t know. We have had to find a singer, three new drummers and a new van, but we’ve gotten by.”

For all the behind-the-scenes disasters, the shows themselves have gone quite well, thanks. The group, whose take on pop-flavored punk falls somewhere between Taking Back Sunday and New Found Glory, has found itself in between road stints and dates on the Warped Tour, the Holy Grail for bands of this sort.

That’s the most Langley could have hoped for when he quit his day job to start Handguns in 2008.

“The job I got just made me miserable. It all came to a head, and I knew I couldn’t do that job shit anymore,” he said. “I knew I had to do this.”

It was never a matter of not wanting to work hard. Langley puts in long hours to ensure progress; despite numerous lineup changes even before this tumultuous summer, Handguns has managed to put out two, seven-song EPs in as many years between relentless tour schedules. At least the writing part came easy.

Somehow, we are still here.
—Jake Langley

“Bands who wait five years between recordings, that’s annoying,” Langley said. “Maybe it’ll be harder when we record a full-length, but we’ve never had no ideas; it hasn’t happened yet.”

Handguns are hesitant to try and take advantage of each passing hot sound of the moment to speed its advancement. Arguably, its brand of pop punk saw its heyday nearly a decade ago, but equal parts nostalgia and fondness keep them plugging away at it.

“Trends are going to come and go,” Langley said. “As long as you are playing what you want to play, people will recognize.”

The group seems resilient in its fight for survival, come hell or high water.

“For me, this is the only thing I’m good at, even kind of good at,” Langley said. “I’m sure at some point, I’ll be done with this and start selling fireworks out of a shed on the side of the road in Nebraska, but for now, I’ve got this. Going home is never in my mind. It’s keep going. It’s always keep going.”

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