DICK DALE, “King of the Surf Guitar,” is 75 and still going strong. Were he not happily ensconced in Southern California, good old Dick might be right here in Savannah, playing the muse to Triathalon.
This relatively new, guitar–based band consists of four 21–year–old SCAD students who imbue the classic surf sound with extra, extra reverb, behind–the–veil shoegaze vocals, pop and an uninhibited punk rock approach.
Pete Townshend was right (as he usually is) when he sagely opined, back in the Who Are You days, that “music must change.”
“I grew up with a lot of the Ventures,” says Triathalon guitarist Adam Intrator, a film and television major from McKinney, Texas. “I really dug that at a young age, and in freshman year I started getting into it again. And I thought that was a sound I kind of wanted to re–amp, or get going again, with our generation.
“Everyone’s starting to get back into the surf sound, as with music everywhere. Which is very cool.”
Although the five songs on Relationchips, Triathalon’s debut EP, don’t exactly conjure up a textbook “day at the beach” (there’s enough angst in the lyrics to make even Pete Townshend blush), Intrator says surf music simply cuts through the bullshit.
“I think it’s because everyone loves the beach, and the surf sound automatically relates to that,” he explains. “It’s kind of the permanent vacation. Any time any one hears anything that has to do with the beach, or water, they associate it with a good time. That’s why I think this sound is so successful.”
Chad Chilton, Michael Younker and Hunter Jayne comprise the rest of the band, which has been mentored by the guys in Cusses, who invited Triathalon to debut at their No Control venue. “They’ve been like family to us,” Intrator reports.
For Triathalon (they spelled it that way on purpose), so don’t bother asking about it), the future’s so bright they gotta wear shades. “This summer, everyone tried to figure out what they wanted to do, school–wise,” says Intrator. “I went to New York and a couple of the other guys stayed here and worked. And I realized that the big city isn’t really my thing. That kind of environment isn’t something I’d feel that passionate about.
“So we decided, why don’t we just try the music thing for a while? Because we can always fall back on something that we’ve majored in later.”
Catch a wave.
Triathalon performs at 10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15 at the Jinx (with Cusses and Roland).
Oh Baby Oh Baby
The four guys that make up Baby Baby aren’t quite as wacky and carefree as the funk/rock band’s stage show and videos would have you believe.
Oh, they’re thrillseekers and funlovers, all right, but playing shows in nothing but day–glo bathing suits, sunglasses and rivers of sweat is just part of the package. And they’re dead serious about the package.
“We’re rock ‘n’ roll dudes, first and foremost,” says Fontez “Swaggasaurus” Brooks, Baby Baby’s guitar–playing singer and unavoidably charismatic frontman.
“When we practice, we get a 30–pack of cheap beer, Black Label or PBR, we drink it and we play some music. And after like a few riffs, a few shotguns, we got it. That’s exactly how every single song we’ve ever had comes out.”
The songs, including “Wah Uh! UH OH!,” “Kidz,” “We Do This All Night Long” and “The Sandwich and I Thought We Were Friends,” they tell the story: Baby Baby is a party band.
Brooks, drummer Grant Wallace, bassist Kyle Dobbs and percussionist Colin Boddy met as West Georgia University students, in the city of Carrollton. “It’s always been about having fun with it, before we even knew what we were doing,” laughs Brooks. “We were all friends in the same circle, and then just literally it all clicked and we started a band.”
They’re Atlanta–based now, and they have a full–length album, Money, full of funk and fun. A second full-length party platter is on the way.
With three local shows this week, Baby Baby is in the midst of a full–blown, mind–blowing love affair with Savannah. “I love it,” Brooks says. “You can drink on the street. Not only that, people are amazing.
“Our friend Lloyd — KidSyc —he’s been a really big stepping stone. He introduced us to Savannah. He’s a dude. If it wasn’t for Lloyd, our Savannah presence wouldn’t have been nearly as beautiful as it is right now.
“Us and Savannah, we get along really well. Baby Baby and Savannah are a match made in heaven.”
This trip our way is officially called “Baby Baby’s Savannah September Hullabaloo”:
At 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 13 at Wild Wing Cafe (with KidSyc@Brandywine)
At 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14 at the Wormhole
From 1–7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15 at Woody’s Skate Park “Beats, Boards and BBQ,” 218 Windsor Road (with Skubz, ITS BANKS, Grisly Adams and guest DJs)