Eureka, Calif., was a bit toastier than Eugene when I spoke to Frank Hoier, the guitar force behind the band Crushed Out, along with drummer Moselle Spiller. Even though 42 degrees isn’t exactly summery, I could hear the sunshine in Hoier’s voice.
“We just had a really excellent week,” Hoier says. “We were down in Southern California opening for Social Distortion for a few sold-out shows. That was some of the most fun we’ve ever had playing.” Hoier, 32, was a So-Cal skate punk whose father was a musician in the first white band signed by Motown Records. Spiller, 28, grew up in New Hampshire, and outside of music, she is a former junior Olympic downhill skier who once studied graphic design (she designs all of Crushed Out’s artwork and merchandise). That athleticism comes in handy — she doesn’t often miss a beat, even when Hoier is climbing on top of the bass drum. Combine those formidable skills and background with surf and garage riffs and the minimalist sound of early rock — The Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Bo Diddley — played through vintage guitar and amps for a distinctive sound.
The Brooklynite pair has been on tour since releasing their debut full-length album, Want to Give, last November. Darkness shades Hoier’s voice only when he explains the name change from Boom Chick. “We have a prepared legal statement because we’re not allowed to talk about it too much,” he says. “There was another band previously using the moniker so we took the opportunity to rebrand.” The tour they’re on will ultimately run for seven months. “We want to go to every corner of America to let our fans know we’re still here.”
There’s a good chance they’ll play “Temper Tantrum” — a favorite of Hoier’s to play live. “It’s just a volume 11 kind of song,” he says. “It’s a weird Ramones-ish surf rock song that builds to an explosive fuzzed-out freak-out.” Even though they played here in November, the band is returning because, as Hoiers puts it, “We had a magical time in Eugene … We’ve made lots of good friends there and we’re super excited to come back.” Here’s to hoping they bring that sunshine with them.
Crushed Out plays with Desert Noises 9:30 pm Friday, Feb. 1, at Sam Bond’s; $7.