Let Your Love Shine: LazerLove5 releases first new record in 6 years

Listen Up Toledo  |  10/20/2011 7:00 am

LazerLove5 (pictured top right) is one of the best bands in Toledo, though, you've likely never heard of them. I don't mean to get all Pitchforky on you, it's just for the simple fact that since the group's last album, Flicker Mask, was released in 2005, the band has only played a handful of dates (you could likely count them on one hand). But genius is hardly the work of prolific live performance; The Beatles, for example, in their most creative and influential years, very rarely performed live and never toured. And I hardly think LazerLove5 mastermind Brian Nupp would much mind any Beatle's references to his music. Though, that's not to suggest his works are the same or even similar to any of The Beatles' output. Instead, the similarity lies in the pop-exploration of the recordings, crafting songs at once bizarre and loveable.

I'm sure there is a post-something-or-other descriptor for the kind of music LazerLove5 makes, but I'm not well-versed in such things. Instead, I can say that genre-pinning their music is a futile task. At it's core, it's rock music, but within that construct it oozes country, psychedelic, alternative, and folky singer-songwriter aesthetics. On Flicker Mask, there is an overall tone of soothing contemplation, emitted through jangly verses, flowery '60s choruses, and quirky lyrics delivered by Nupp's ever-even and carefully carefree vocal presentations. It makes for a soothing listen that's engaging, fun, and heady all at once. This is all in large part due to Nupp's ever-searching ear for perfection in recording. From his home studio here in Toledo, he works not just to write great songs, but to seek out new methods and tricks in recording that give each of his songs a warm, unique feel (Nupp also was the engineer and producer for the acclaimed Fast Piece of Furniture album).

Since its release, Flicker Mask - with it's weird alt-songwriting, near-flawless production, and catchy pop hooks - has been among my all-time favorite Toledo albums. As the band prepares to release their third album this weekend (a solid six years later), dubbed Lady Bottle Opener, I've no doubt it too will be an instant local classic, and too will be in the running for one of the most fun, well-crafted, and unique records that you'll hear this year. If nothing else, the cast of contributors on this record reads like a who's who of the local scene, including John Hubble (Shuttlecock), Joel Roberts (Stylex, GoLab), Jeff Loose (Stylex, WEe), Tony Lowe (Fast Piece of Furniture), Jeff Nelson (of hardcore legends Minor Threat, and Fast Piece of Furniture), as well as Casey Malone, Brandon Boltz, and Bid of the Monochrome Set.

Helping LazerLove5 celebrate the release of their new record is another of Toledo's most original bands, GoLab (pictured bottom right). This heralded two piece - the brainchild and labor of Joel Roberts - delivers high-energy electro-pop that is completely original and always 100% crowd-pleasing.

LazerLove5 and GoLab play Frankie's Inner City (308 Main St.) on Saturday, October 22. Doors at 9 p.m. $5 21+, $7 under 21. www.frankiesinnercity.com