Piques: ‘Yes And’
New record is a loud, brash, and fun rock n’ roll album
The Fort seems to be putting out an impressive stream of rock n’ roll bands as of late. There’s Namen Namen, Uncle Muscle, Snakehandler Church, and Squirrel Cage, just to name a few, not to mention longstanding kings of Fort Wayne rock like Kevin Hambrick, Heaven’s Gateway Drugs, and D Ferren & The Sad Bastards that are still doing their thing to stunning effect.
Another band making their mark on the Fort is Piques. The band, consisting of Zachary Kershner, Mitch Fraizer, Cale Gerst, Kyle Osborn, and Lance Roberts, just released a brand-new long player. The five-piece make big and gnarly rock n’ roll in the spirit of everything from A.M.-era Wilco, Weezer, The Replacements, and Cymbals Eat Guitars.
Their new album Yes And is a loud, brash, and fun rock n’ roll album that relishes in proper guitar jangle and never takes itself too seriously. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t stakes involved.
Yes And comes out of the gate swinging with the brash “My Self,” a barn-burner that lands somewhere between Thin Lizzy, The Replacements, and Uncle Tupelo. It’s a self-deprecating rocker with a story-song swing that’s infectious. “All Down Hill From Harvard” brings to mind of Pinkerton-era Weezer, back when Cuomo & Co. still had something to prove. The dreamy “So Damn Blues” wavers in hazy atmospherics and even touches of latter-era Pavement.
Kershner and Fraizer are music scene veterans, both having played in bands in the Fort more than a decade. At this point, they know their way around a songwriting session and a studio, so Yes And sounds top-notch. Being recorded at Sweetwater Studios right here in the Fort only adds to that sheen. So a dusty country rocker like “D.O.A. (Underground)” comes off as fried in the Southwestern sun, and the Meat Puppets-inflected closer “Nexus” shines in fuzzy, inspired electricity.
Yes And seems to have it all while also possessing a continuity throughout its eight songs.
If you don’t think there’s something special going on in the Fort Wayne scene, then you’re just not listening. I’ve been covering local music more than a decade and there’s never been a lull here. The fire burns bright on local stages, and Piques’ Yes And is proof of that.