Santa Cruz Good Times

Nov 25th
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The Atomic Aces

music_LYLBAtomicAcesHead for the fallout shelters, the Atomic Aces are set to ignite a fiery explosion of upbeat, down and dirty rock ’n’ roll. “You’ll want to dance to our songs,” explains Mercy Vasseur, lead singer and debutant of the Aces. “They’re a nice fusion of different things for every age group.” And there might just be something to this. Atomic Aces dissect elements of country, rockabilly, and Western swing, only to splice them together with the best parts of rock and punk. The result is a blaze of hip beats and head-nodding twang, showing the young kids something new and giving the old timers a flash of something familiar. Founded last year by Vasseur and Chris Curtiss, one of two guitarists, both were in a musical rut. Vasseur’s previous band The Formaldebrides (a great live, local act in their own right, in which Vasseur rocked out the tunes on guitar) had broken up, and Curtiss had recently departed from his band Cruz Missiles. Curtiss explains that he and Vassuer then teamed up: “We had jammed together a few times over the years but finally decided, ‘Let’s do it!’” Vasseur then recruited bassist “Kung Fu” Andrew Dowd to provide the slapping chops on the upright. The bassist in turn recruited 14-year guitar veteran Dave Teeple, who completed the group by bringing in Ollie Northrup on the skins. The five began pounding out songs by channeling their various influences, from Patsy Cline and Johnny Cash to the Cramps and Uncle Meat himself. “My favorite artist is Frank Zappa,” states Teeple. “I’m writing songs that lean in that direction, just not too much.” Vasseur agrees, “We’re trying to break all the rules.” Their process has done them well. So far they’ve released four singles, a video and are currently working on a full-length album. With titles like “She-Devil in Disguise” and “The Ghost of Jameson Jones,” their songs are as slick as their style. “I love predictability with a twist,” states Vasseur. “We all want this band to be something fun.”

INFO: 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 9. Brookdale Lodge, 11570 Hwy 9, Brookdale. $8. 338-1300.

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