Australian band to play the Bishop

By Adam Smith

After a month of touring across the United States, Australian band Twerps has three more shows before heading back home.

Twerps are scheduled to play at the Bishop Bar on Friday. Local band Wet Blankets will be the opening act of the night.

This is the first time Twerps has toured the U.S. since 2012, and the band’s vocalist and guitarist Marty Frawley said the tour has been going well.

“It’s been really good,” he said, “It’s been surprisingly better than I ever would have hoped for.”

Some nights haven’t gone as well as the band hoped, Frawley said, but performing live music is always a gamble. Anyone who takes a chance on Twerps should expect to experience “just full-blown, hard-hitting energy,” he said.

Twerps make a new set list every night they play in order to keep everything fresh, Frawley said. Some bands Frawley sees touring in support of new albums look so bored because they’re just going through the motions, he said, but he and his bandmates want to keep the show fun for themselves.

“I don’t like having to sing the same song over and over again,” Frawley said. “It loses meaning for me.”

The band’s current tour is in support of their new album “Range Anxiety” that came out near the end of January, but Frawley said some nights they only play a couple of songs from the new album.

“Our manager thinks we don’t play enough songs off our new album,” Frawley said.

He said it’s partly because the Twerps’ newest songs are actually from their August 2014 EP “Underlay” that was recorded after their new album but released months earlier. Frawley said “Range Anxiety” seems almost like a distant memory because of how long ago they made the album.

Twerps’ new album is definitely improved from their 2011 self-titled debut in a lot of ways, Frawley said, but it’s still “janky” in some aspects. One improvement was the addition of new drummer Alex Macfarlane, he said.

“Alex is a far, far better drummer and also musician,” Frawley said, “ He’s definitely made it a little bit easier to play. We’ve got a better team almost.”

Macfarlane was also responsible for coming up with the name of the new album, Frawley said. The drummer writes down a lot of different words, he said, and when no one knew what to call the album he suggested the phrase “range anxiety.”

Range anxiety is the worry that an electric car’s battery will run out before the driver’s destination or a recharging station can be reached, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. Frawley said the phrase means a few things.

“The name is in reference to how far and how big we could get as a band, but we also kind of like playing down the fact that we’re a little Australian band,” Frawley said. “We take the piss out of each other a fair bit. You never take yourself too serious where we come from.”

Frawley said the band will probably want to record another album as soon as possible. The band members don’t want to be a band that tours all the time, he said, but they have to keep moving forward in some way.

When Twerps head back home to Australia they’ll return to their normal lives, Frawley said. Macfarlane will go play with one of the other bands he’s in, vocalist and guitarist Julia McFarlane will spend some time with a new band she started and Frawley will return to the job he works five days a week, he said.

“This isn’t our job yet,” Frawley said. “We try to keep just making songs and enjoying it.”

PULLOUT: Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Open to everyone 18+. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., and the show starts at 8:30 p.m.

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