When indie-rock band Oh My God takes the stage at the Crosstown Station's Press Bar tonight -- right after locals Bacon Shoe -- expect the unexpected. (Even founding band member Ig admits he has no idea what might happen.) On the road to promote their most recent album, The Night Undoes the Work of the Day, Ig took a few minutes to talk to The Pitch about life on tour, the perfect show, and how reality television star and the country's most popular bisexual Tila Tequila popped up in their latest video for "My New Adventure."
You're currently on the road -- where are you headed?
We're coming back from a show in Portland, and now we're headed to Chicago for a hometown show tonight. We like to tour in the fall. Our latest album came out last fall, we just did two new videos, and we wanted to have some shows on the calendar.
You've been playing for a long time. What's touring like after all these years?
Sometimes when I'm home I can't imagine getting on the road. There are some good days and some bad days, and then there are other times when I wish we were doing 300 shows a year. Now we're doing few enough shows that we're only performing in towns that we like going to.
So you've played in Kansas City before?
Yeah, we've played at The Hurricane, RecordBar, and the Brick. This will be our first time at Crosstown Station. We've had a lot of very really memorable nights in Kansas City. Those who come out tend to really know the songs. We have a Kansas City cult-following.
In your mind, what makes for a stellar performance?
Living up to our own expectations and hopes on the stage. If we can't dig deep into the emotional well and really play well, then why the hell are we up here? If we can't do that for 50 minutes of our whole day, then what the fuck? There have been plenty of times where we've played in front of 400 or 500 people, and I was like, "No, that wasn't my bit." It was a pretty lazy show. We didn't dial in, put the pedal to the medal. Last night I thought we had a great show in Portland.
Tila Tequila is in one of your new videos for "My New Adventure" - what was that like?
When the subject came up, I had no idea who she was. Billy had heard of her. She was actually a pretty regular person and came out and nice to be around. She did what she was asked to do and went home.
What's the concept behind newest album, The Night Undoes the Work of the Day?
All our previous albums were just Bill and I writing songs, we recorded them, and they came out every eclectic. What emerged was almost maddeningly eclectic for a label. They just didn't understand the band; it was D.I.Y. by necessity. In making this album, life kind of added some unplanned elements in the form of a really terrible van accident and illnesses among band members' families, some of which were fairly serious. We were beset with a lot of things in the midst of songwriting, and that certainly had an effect in dictating kind of the emotional climate of the record.
I was disappointed to read the AllMusic.com review, where the writer had written "this is some really depressing stuff." We didn't intend it to be a downer of a record. I think, as usual with our music, hope and mystery are involved. I guess you could call them sad songs.
How would you describe an Oh My God show?
No two Oh My God shows are even remotely alike. No one knows what [frontman] Billy has up his sleeve in terms of props, costume and makeup--we don't even know what he's going to do. He might be wearing a dress and a beard and be in a foul mood, or a coat and a tie. He might tell stories. That's kind of the way he's going lately. He might not even want to do these songs. He's the prankster.