Reading, writing and rocking out the signs, signals and signifiers; Columbus, Ohio's Connections make contact with Body Language. Available from their hometown imprint Anyway Records; the quintet of Kevin, Andy, Adam, Dave and Phil are here to give you the visceral somatic language of music to awaken the deafened sense of the ears, mind, and body.
Connections make music for the delightfully derelict, the disconnected and downtrodden on “Aimless”. Looking at the world with fuzzy vision, “Blurry Eyes” rides the riffs in the name of bottle lens perceptions. A song for getting up and over it, “She's Cheering Up” gives a glimmer hope, before “Late Shift” joins in the working class call of doing the damn thing, and getting the job done no matter the hour or extended time of indentured servitude.
“Jeni & Johnny” keeps the indie scuzz ballads spinning on the platters, with “Green Skull” lighting up the lanterns and reviving the extinguished roaches. “Girls Night Out” gives the guys a righteous excuse to rock and shred out, as “Summer Creeps” gives a 90s pastiche air of Summer breezes and a sound that belongs to Connections' personal DIY brand. “Collect U.S.A.” keeps those slacker grunge ideals intact like a living museum of American underground rock. “2 Makes 2” blares out the math in terms of pure raw power, while “Hang On” gives some awe inspiring encouragement before hitting the red eyed bummer days of “Rough Patch”. Signing off, “Florida, Vegas, Tahoe” leaves you with a lasting goodbye for now, full of vacation memories of the Summer holiday that never happened.
We we caught up and connected with Connections to get inside the world of Body Language.
What was the connection between Connections that brought you all together prior to the recording of Private Airplane?
Andy Hampel: Kevin & I were in 84 Nash together. Adam (Kevin's brother) in Times New Viking so we knew each other well. Dave is a great guitar player from the equally awesome El Jesus de Magico and Kevin met Phil after being put together in the local rock potluck we have every year. Pretty sure we are all supposed to be playing together cause it's cool.
What was the interpretive Rosetta stone in translating the songs about Late Shifts and Summer Creeps for the Body Language album?
Andy Hampel: Seems like most of the songs on Body Language are rooted in some sort of nostalgia. Nostalgia for pools & the ice cream shop I used to work at and girls and drugs and smoking and discovering new records and all that usual stuff.
Kevin Elliott: Weed. Definitely weed.
While you all have played with a vast array of groups from Merchandise to The Breeders; who are some of your favorite Columbus acts these days?
Andy Hampel: Columbus has some great bands at the moment – Sega Genocide and Unholy Two and WV White and Psychic Wheels and Nervosas – plus Ron House and Mike Rep and Tommy Jay still play some amazing shows.
Perhaps some favorite non-Columbus, OH bands you all are into currently?
Andy Hampel: We are all into different stuff. Been listening to a lot of Joe Walsh and Cleaners From Venus and NRBQ and J Geils and the Roches lately…
Kevin Elliott: The '80s Top 40 Countdowns on Sirius have been the soundtrack to our last few road trips in Andy's Toyota Tundra. That and the Deep Tracks channel. Oh, and the new Tegan and Sara record.
What is the state of independent music in Columbus, Ohio as of now?
Andy Hampel: Independent music is doing fine in Columbus.
Having had some pictures snapped of you all playing Independents Day by Mayor Mike Coleman, is it safe to say you have found a new fan in the civic arena?
Andy Hampel: Kevin & I met the mayor at the Michael MacDonald concert last year and apparently have stayed pretty tight. Good for him. Pretty sure he was there to see the girl band after us – they had a Kickstarter and everything..
Kevin Elliott: I looked back as we were playing and he gave me a wink and a huge thumbs up. He's a charming man.
If Connections had a political platform, what would it be?
Andy Hampel: We basically support any legislation that favors the Holiday Inn Express chain. They do a real nice job.