happy new year!

Okay, so we’re a little late. But here’s the first thing we played together in weeks, live from the Gandy Dancer stage. We probably hadn’t played this in a couple years, so it was kind of a leap of faith to start with this, two weeks after the new year.

from the Gandy Dancer, 14 January 2023

We’ll see people again out in the world on Saturday, January 28th, from 4-7pm at Compass Rose Lodge for their Apres Ski Series.

videos of us in handcuffs

We’ve been keeping this under wraps, but we’re pretty excited to see that it’s now coming out into all your streaming platforms. Introducing:

Videos of Us in Handcuffs

Album art by Leslie Hetland — isn’t it spectacular?!
Title inspired by Ian’s musing that he wanted us to get arrested during a gig.
(Listen to the last track of the EP to hear his daydream while drumming.)

We’ve put together the track list and commentary on our “liner notes” page, but probably you should just listen in on your favorite streaming platform. And listen often: We get about one-tenth of a cent for each of your streams. Go crazy.

Better yet, come visit us and pick up a real CD at a future gig in the new year! We’ve got some shows coming up and we’ll even play all of these songs and many, many more. For now, we’re just really excited that we were able to press the record button, mix our own sounds, and distribute them into your car stereos, earbuds, and living rooms. Enjoy!

jazz at the station, pandemic edition

We don’t get around much anymore, as the song goes, and live performances and live audiences are in short supply. But one silver lining to a pandemic is that we sometimes deliver music straight into your home through wires. Jazz at the Station was good enough to host us for a socially distanced performance for their monthly session at Ogden’s Union Station.

On stage in a nearly empty ballroom at Ogden's Union Station.
Performing on the stage of a nearly empty ballroom at Ogden’s Union Station. (Photo credit: Karyn Johnston)

For us, the best part of it all was that we had this moment to get dressed up and play from a stage for an hour, albeit without a physical audience. It was a nice chance to feel like ourselves. While it’s not the same as being there, it was recorded for the public record.

Someday, one day, we’ll see you in person again. We’re looking forward to that.

studio sessions

There’s a lot going on this month for us, but most of it isn’t out in public. We’ve hunkered down in preparation for things to come, and most recently we went back into The Proper Way‘s studio and recorded more tracks with Scott Rogers pushing all the sounds through the wires and into his big stack of boxes to make waveforms on the computer. Someday, soon, we hope we’ll have these all tied up with bows and loaded onto other formats so that you won’t just have to look at pictures of us making and listening to our own music — you’ll get to hear it, too.

we made a thing

It’s not as though this has been a secret, but we’ve been keeping it to ourselves until everything was ready.

And now, it’s ready.

We spent an afternoon in the studio and recorded stuff worthy of your favorite speakers or headphones. Either way, turn it up to 11 and listen.

You can go to the dedicated samples page (substandards.band/samples) where there’s a description of each track (plus one bonus demo track!), or push the play button on the player in the side bar (often pushed to the bottom if you’re reading this on a smaller device), or let us know if you’d like these in another format and we’ll be delighted to share them with you.

While you’re listening, here’s a few snapshots from The Proper Way studios on a Saturday afternoon. When we look back on this, we were clearly having a good time playing through the live takes to get each track just like we wanted it. It was also intimidating and stressful. But you’d never know now. We’re proud of these, and grateful that we got to do this. We hope you enjoy it, too.

For gigs, Caryn’s usually in heels. This should be our album cover.
Ian with 4 microphones and a room all to himself
Tim and his fretless bass.
Tim and Caryn getting situated.
Adam warms up and figures out headphones.
Caryn listening to one of our takes.
Hanging up the headphones and listening to tracks in the studio.
Caryn, Caryn’s microphone, and Caryn’s headset all getting a break.
Caryn with Scott Rogers, our recording guru who puts all the sounds through the cables and into the boxes.