Jonson Kuhn | New SCENE
Have you ever tripped over a straight rug before? Of course, you haven’t because straight rugs are boring as boring gets. The Crooked Rugs are where it’s at because it grabs your attention when you trip over their crookedness. Well, listening to the NOCO-based band The Crooked Rugs is a very similar experience; though their genre of psych-rock is nothing new, their approach certainly is, enough so that it grabs your attention and lands you flat on your face.
Wasting no time in 2023, The Crooked Rugs are set to release their fourth full-length record, METROPOLIS on March 10, one day after their headlining show at the Aggie Theatre. They’ll perform at the Aggie on March 9 at 8 pm with Tonguebyte and Cactus Cat. They’ll have CDs for sale at the show, and the album will hit streaming platforms on March 10.
The Crooked Rugs formed in Fort Collins around 2019. The current lineup consists of Jayce Haley, Nolan Brumbach, Jay LeCavalier, and brothers Rex and Finn Stowers. As Nolan explained, the project came together due to their collective time spent at Colorado State University.
“Four out of five of us live together in a house in Fort Collins,” Nolan said. “Officially, the five of us got together in this band in August of 2019, but myself, Jayce, and Rex have been playing together since 2015 when we first met each other in our first year at CSU.”
While most around the world saw the pandemic as a setback, The Crooked Rugs saw it as an opportunity to hunker down and get serious about their new collaborative project. The band took the downtime as an opportunity to get busy recording and releasing their first EP, Eyes/Takes a Minute, in July 2020.
Following the EP came two self-recorded full-length albums in 2021 titled IT! and THAT! Nolan explained that it was through playing music together every day during COVID that the band found their sound so that by the time the restrictions were over, the boys were ready with brand new sets for hungry live audiences who had been deprived of live music for the last year or more.
“I love playing live shows, so I would just book as many shows as possible, and we would play almost every weekend, and that’s how we kind of got our start and got known around town. Once we could start playing shows again, we got after it again by playing as many shows as possible.”
The Crooked Rugs then released Tales of the Great Western Sky the following year, which the band themselves has described as a concept album that blends psych moments with classic rock riffs to match, which Nolan explained started more as a joke than a serious pitch for an album.
“We thought it would be funny to write like a psychedelic country western rock, which turned into our third album, Tales of the Great Western Sky. We moved into this house in 2021; as soon as we moved in, we started recording and had that ready by April 2022.”
Nolan said that for their fourth and latest album, they mostly followed the same process as the previous albums, with all camping out together in the location. This time, the difference was they actually hired an engineer.
”Shane Zweygardt, he brought over his tape machine, and we recorded the whole thing in the basement; it was pretty cool,” Nolan said. “Metropolis is just a reflection of everything we’ve done and kind of where we want to go at the same time. It’s very themed, like dark vs. light; it’s about contrast, and it showcases both our most ethereal and heavy metal songs. We’re really excited to share it with people finally.”
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Take my advice, fall for The Crooked Rugs, and enjoy your trip!