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Golden Boots stomps loudly



Special to Metromix.com

You’ve likely heard of local band Golden Boots, because this is one group that, over its seven-year history, has played any place it could.

Any place?

“We did a show in an office building for AmeriCorps at 9 a.m. under fluorescent lights during a coffee break, where employees came to watch us play” says Ryen Eggleston, who founded the band with Dimitri Manos.

That’s dedication to the craft, folks.

“At another show, our amp blew up onstage” Manos says, “which, by all accounts, is a pretty good sign that you’ve arrived.”

Another good sign came Tuesday with the release of Golden Boots’ latest album, and the accompanying party to celebrate is Friday at Plush. And “The Winter of our Discotheque” (Park the Van) is more than just a clever take on a Shakespearean quote; it’s the next mutation of their self-described “alt-gothic country” sound.

“Each album is different,” Eggleston explains. “I would describe this one as more ‘woody’ sounding.”

“This album is more of a strange, angular creation” Manos offers. To see what they mean, check out their MySpace page for a sample of tracks off the album. (Better yet, buy a copy at the show.)

The band – filled out for the last couple of years by Nathan Sabatino and James Grip – has eight or nine albums, Eggleston estimates. (“There’s some contention between me and Dimitri on this,” Eggleston says.) All have been self-recorded, with “Winter of our Discotheque” captured, he says, at the former Scrappys space downtown.

As with all their albums, it was mixed at Sabatino’s Loveland Studios.

Highlights include “Knife” and “Ghosts,” both of which have videos, and “Country Bat High II,” though we’re not completely sure if the song is a true sequel or even what a “country bat” is, for that matter. Manos seems reluctant to elaborate, merely saying that “Country Bat High II” came about as a Willie Nelson-style ditty that he began working on after the rest of the band went to lunch. It was rediscovered later in the recording process and made the final cut of the album.

We asked about the name Golden Boots and if it referred to the “Academy Awards of the Western” used to honor cowboy movie actors. Wrong. It refers to a lyric in one of their early songs, and they embraced the name after receiving compliments about it and feeling that it fit the band.

This go-with-the-flow ethos brought the two here in the first place. Though they met in the Old Pueblo, Eggleston and Manos hail from Philadelphia and kind of meandered their way to Tucson.

“I was heading out to California, and stopped in Tucson, and just ended up really liking it,” Manos says.

Eggleston, who says he arrived a year later in 2000, had a different approach.

“Well, I was wandering around the country hitchhiking and ended up in New Mexico for a while. I was looking for a city that felt like it had a smaller feel to it. Tucson fit the bill.”

After officially unveiling “Winter” on Friday, the band heads out for a 10-day tour and then, in April, heads to Austin, Texas, to play the Park the Van showcase at South by Southwest.

Lately the two have been listening to such diverse artists as Dead Sea, the noise band Harry P—yand John Denver, and Motown in general. So if that’s any indicator as to what the next Golden Boots album will sound like, it will be interesting to see how the two weave them into their changing soundscape. And, with more than an album out every year, we may just find out soon.


What: Golden Boots CD release, with Big Daddy Bobby and Bob Log III

When: 9:30 p.m. Friday

Where: Plush, 340 E. Sixth St.

Price: $7

Info: 798-1298, plushtucson.com

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