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.
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.
"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.
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.
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.
Aranda with 9 Left Dead, TwoFold and Spinal Cross 7 p.m. Saturday Diamond Ballroom 8001 S. Eastern diamondballroom.net 677-9169 $9
Oklahoma City alt-rock outfit Aranda has come a long way from its first gig, which saw brothers Dameon and Gabe Aranda playing air guitar and lipsynching for their grandparents.
Aranda has been nearly a lifetime in the making, but it almost didn’t happen after a record deal with Sony fell apart in the early 2000s. The group neared total dissolution when an upstart rock label made a new offer. Soon, the group was sharing stages with the likes of Shinedown and Papa Roach.
“The band was pretty much broken up,” Dameon Aranda said. “It was something out of nothing. We weren’t expecting anything, and it’s worked out great.”
That opportunity came on the heels of his work as a songwriter alongside Color Me Badd’s Sam Watters.
Two of the tracks from Aranda’s 2008 self-titled debut, including “All I Ever Wanted,” subsequently were covered by Kelly Clarkson on her 2009 album, titled after the song.
“She called me and made sure she had permission to do it,” Dameon Aranda said. “I was like, ‘Are you kidding me? This is awesome!’” That speaks to the range the group enjoyed with its earlier material, recalling anything from All-American Rejects to Spoon. That focus was narrowed into something harder with the new album, Stop the World, which will be celebrated Saturday at Diamond Ballroom.
“We got pushed a little bit into the active rock scene. I love this album, but it was a little bit of stretch for us to go this heavy,” Dameon Aranda said. “It was almost like doing a caricature of yourself. It was us imagining that we were in a heavi er group than we actually were.”
Just like before, the entire project was almost shelved before release; luckily, Aranda found a way to make it happen, and reactions are the most positive the band has received. Dameon Aranda is glad that the years working with his brother are paying off.
“There is something special when we are together. That’s why we kept it going,” he said. “It’s like the Thunder: It takes a while to find that chemistry, but once you do, it’s time to go after that brass ring.”