You might think that Denver alt-country act Slim Cessnas Auto Club would have claimed Oklahoma City as a second home a long time ago, but in its two-decade existence, this show marks its first time here.
It makes sense really, for us to play more in Oklahoma City, bandleader Slim Cessna said. I cant believe its the first time. Its like, Lets do this right.
The band that audiences would have seen in the 90s is far different from the one appearing next Wednesday at The Conservatory. What started out as a traditional Western act has morphed into a rowdy, Americana style dubbed gothabilly cowpunk.
Over the years, we just gave in and allowed ourselves to do what we do, Cessna said. Its hard to explain, but it evolved into this different beast. Im not sure how or why or when, but it just did. We started putting on a rock show.
Only after embracing those more eclectic punk elements did Slim Cessnas Auto Club really start to take off.
We earned this reputation along the way. Articles and people on the Internet were calling us the best live band out there. You have to live up to that every night, he said. My knees hurt, my back hurts and Im not even fully recouped from the last tour, but its a blast.
While artists like Johnny Cash and Dead Kennedys helped spark the well-received shift in sound and style, it was a certain stormy night that allowed Cessna to bottle that lighting.
Im as inspired by the weather as music, he said. The
landscape in the part of the world me and you come from is very
different from the rest of the country. A storm is something to reckon
with, something that can get in your face very quickly. Theres the
color and how big and dramatic the sky is. That enters into your art.
The Auto Clubs latest album is last years Unentitled, which showcased the groups new directions.
like to at least pretend we are artists, trying to challenge ourselves
to approach each record differently so it doesnt become your regular,
mundane job, Cessna said. Our ideal for this one was to make a pop
album. The end result isnt a pop album. Its still us, but theres some
actual hooks in there.
The sextet has written songs for its next disc; Cessna just isnt sure when it will see the light of day.
We dont work as fast as we should. Wed like to have it out next year, but well see, he said. No promises.