“I MET HIM only once, at a goddamn stupid party” is a line from Catcher in the Rye. It’s not well known or anything. It’s not in anyone’s high school yearbook. Yet for some reason, a few dudes from Brooklyn decided to name their band after it. Now you’re thinking, “Why the hell would anyone name their band after such a weird quote?” Or maybe, “Why the hell would anyone name their band Stupid Party?”Well, these guys don’t give a shit what you’re thinking.
I met the band at Jimmy’s Diner in Williamsburg. Bassist Chuck E. Violence was filling ketchup bottles and sweeping up the place for closing as I sat in the middle of the rest of the band at the counter.
They cracked jokes, made fun of each other and argued about pretty much everything related to Stupid Party.
“It was a reference to J.D. Salinger,” says Johnny Norton, the drummer.
“That’s not true,” says Cory Feiernan, the lead singer and guitarist.
“I thought it came from The Toy starring Richard Pryor,” says their friend Colin, sitting at the end of the counter.
“It came from Ghost and there’s this line where Patrick Swayze says ‘I don’t wanna go to that goddamn stupid party,’” says Feiernan.
These guys don’t take things very seriously, but that’s what makes them such a kick-ass band. Stupid Party is unpretentious, balls-out, house party music for the soul, songs from a side of Brooklyn that doesn’t get national or even much local love because it’s not as nice as the Dirty Projectors or MGMT.
For the last two years, Stupid Party has hosted shows at the house its members share in Crown Heights.You may have seen listings and flyers for bands like Screaming Females, Bad
Blood or Shellshag playing somewhere called the Fort. That’s the living room.
“We live together in a huge shitty house, we work jobs that we mildly pretend to hate and we all play music,” says Norton.
So far, Stupid Party has released a selftitled LP and a 7”; a split 7” with Bad Blood is on the way. The band is currently recording an album for the Vivian Girls-run Wild World Records, but don’t jump to conclusions.They don’t sound anything like their famous friends.With a gun to my head, I’d say they sound like a less organized Mudhoney or happier Melvins, with too much metal for garage rock, but too much bounce for actual metal.These sounds crash together in single songs, changing up speeds, going from almost black metal shrieks to sing-a-long ooohs and aaahs.
Listen to “Sludger” off the debut LP and you’ll start slowly nodding like you’re listening to stoner rock, but before your neck has reached that perfect Zen rhythm, the song will jump into a fast MC5 riff that seamlessly melds into a punk sing-a-long.
When I asked what the guys in the band listen to, hoping to figure out how they came up with this sound, they started throwing around band names.
“There’s no band that each of us all agree on,” concludes guitarist Nate Stark. They all call out a couple more and each make faces.
“We all like Creedence,” says Feiernan. “Yeah, we like CCR,” says the rest of the band.
If you try hard, you might be able to hear a little CCR in “No Hell.” The song has an epic Creedence breakdown and build, but I don’t think Fogerty ever shrieked with such agony as Feiernan on this song. It’s like listening to four dudes in black jeans and dirty T-shirts play “Ramble Tamble” after each of them chugged two Red Bulls and a six pack of PBR, didn’t feel like tuning, ran their guitars through a Superfuzz Big Muff and played it in half the time. In other words, it’s fucking fun.
> Stupid Party
Dec. 6, Bowery Ballroom, 6 Delancey St. (betw. Bowery & Chrystie St.), 212-533-2111; 8, $16