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Davis, California

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Davis Live Music Collective presents Camper Van Beethoven

On Monday, Camper Van Beethoven, one of the pivotal groups of ’80s alternative rock, will perform at The Odd Fellows Lodge on 415 Second Street.

The group, whose inventive blend of genres such as psychedelia, folk, and surf forged a path for the eclecticism of indie rock over the past two decades, will begin playing at 8 p.m., following an opening set by local rock act The West Nile Ramblers.

This show will also mark the first time in 25 years that the band has played a concert in town, an event made more significant in light of several close connections they have to Davis.

To begin with, their debut album, Telephone Free Landslide Victory (1985), immortalized in the annals of college radio for its iconic single, “Take the Skinheads Bowling,” was recorded locally in East Davis.

Additionally, original band member and multi-instrumentalist Johnathan Segel grew up in Davis and is also the son of Professor Emeritus Irwin H. Segel.

“When I was growing up, I saw a huge amount of great music in Davis … it had a big impact on me,” Segel said. “I’m happy to play in the town.”

Camper Van Beethoven seems to have taken to revisiting old Northern California haunts of late, both literally and thematically. Their latest album in nine years, La Costa Perdida (released Jan. 22), draws stylistically upon the region through songs like “Northern California Girls” and through evocations of psychedelic West-Coast pop.

This is quite fitting for the band, whose members met while attending UC Santa Cruz and were influenced by vestiges of ’60s counterculture, among various other styles and aesthetics over the years (ska, country, spaghetti westerns and narcocorridos) that have contributed to the group’s unreplicable sound.

Kyle Monhollen, graphic artist for Davis Live Music Collective, explained some of CVB’s multifaceted appeal.

“My true love musically is Americana — that wide, jangly umbrella that catches the sort of California gypsy funk CVB helped invent.”

Kelly McCrory, who is running show on behalf of the DLMC, was able to supply a final word on the CVB experience coming Monday.

“Camper Van Beethoven has been at it for over 25 years, and if you’re a fan of modern indie rock, you need to see one of the groups who paved the way and are still at it.”

For more information, visit the DLMC website at davislivemusic.com. Tickets for the show are now available online and at Armadillo Records on F Street.

ANDREW RUSSELL can be reached at arts@theaggie.org.


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