Smith Westerns "Dye It Blonde" CD
Chicago’s Smith Westerns are a band looking for some teenage kicks with their home-brewed mix of garage, glam & punk; and they come about their energy honestly: none of the group members was old enough to buy a beer when they released 2009’s self-titled & celebrated low-fi debut.
Formed in 2007 by Max Kakacek and Cullen Omori, who at the time were students at Chicago’s Northside College Prep, the two had been turned to garage rock through compilations like Nugget and Back From The Grave, and they decided it was music they could play without knowing much technique. As Kakacek and Omori began learning to play guitars, they drafted Cameron Omori, Cullen’s brother, to play bass and with the three members taking turns on drums, the Smith Westerns were born. Within a year the band was steady enough to be booked into Chicago’s better rock clubs, including Schuba’s and the Empty Bottle, while playing house parties on the side.
In 2008, the Smith Westerns finally found a full-time drummer, Hal James, and local independent label HoZac Records (originally an offshoot of the punk-zine Horizontal Action) released their first 7inch. The single promptly sold out its first two pressings, and in June 2009, HoZac brought out the Smith Westerns’ self-titled debut album, which found the band indulging a taste for 70s glam rock alongside punk and garage influences. Touring steadily by this time, the Smith Westerns released a split single on Fat Possum with the Magic Kids, which lead them to Dye It Blonde: their polished, preppy & clean second record with thick vintage guitar sounds and tales of teenaged love. The band is currently on tour with MGMT in the United States.