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The Blank Tapes Return to Ann Arbor

The Blank Tapes return to Ann Arbor on April 7th for a show at the Blind Pig with Matt Costa.

New LP, Vacation, is out May 14th, 2013
on Antenna Farm Records!

The Blank Tapes is now and always has been Matt Adams, a soft-spoken kid from a Southern California suburb who learned to play practically every instrument a good garage band needs, and then started making beautifully idiosyncratic records on his trusty home eight-track. By the time he left his home in Orange County for San Francisco in 2005, he’d put dozens if not a hundred of his own songs on tape, all lovingly and painstakingly and perfectly recorded in a series of ever more modest bedrooms and sheds.

In SF, Adams continued on this DIY path, with a rotating cast of backing members for The Blank Tapes live band and a string of self-recorded, self-illustrated, and self-released albums, all accompanied by self-booked tours. By 2010, this approach was paying off, with a pair of surprise smash hits in Brazil, leading to his first tour outside North America. He shared bills with sci-fi garage legends Thee Oh Sees and home-taper extraordinaire R. Stevie Moore in Europe. He provided much of the soundtrack to the cult surf film ‘Stoked and Broke’ and took a stripped-down Blank Tapes to Japan to tour with the film. And he custom-wrote a special song for Burger Record’s Weiner Dog Benefit comp, doing his utmost to help a little puppy pay a vet bill.

Now relocated back to Los Angeles, Adams finds the music he’s loved since that first borrowed guitar is now the new sound of Southern California, thanks to standard bearers like the Growlers, Nick Waterhouse and Burger Records, who released a Blank Tapes full-length in 2012. The next step is 2013’s Vacation LP (releasing via Oakland’s Antenna Farm Records), the first-ever full Blank Tapes album recorded somewhere besides Adams’ home studio. Ever since the birth of The Blank Tapes in 2003, Adams has figured out the classic part of classic rock—the kind of songs that feel like they’ve always been there, that aren’t so much written as revealed. And Adams lately gets his revelations while traveling, so Vacation is an album written on the road with a little nod to the rootless spirit of the actual On The Road.

Rich with the kind of three-part harmonies that the Wilson Brothers used to love, Vacation has songs that transplant the style and sentiment of immortals like Ray Davies and Robyn Hitchcock (“Earring”) or Kris Kristofferson and Terry Allen (“Working,” “Vacation”) or even Lou Reed (“Pearl,” written about girlfriend and current Blank Tapes drummer Pearl Charles the night he met her) and Buddy Holly (the adorable bridge of “Coast to Coast”) or even Os Mutantes on “Brazilia,” a bossa-delic song inspired by Adams’ informal park jam sessions on his last Brazilian tour. Vacation is an everything-old-is-new-again album—a record chasing down timelessness in its own time.