The Shilohs bring jangle-pop to Local 506

Jul. 24, 2014 @ 10:29 AM

Johnny Payne has done everything you can do working at a record store, plus one more: forming a band. Payne sings and plays guitar in The Shilohs, a jangle-pop band from Vancouver, British Columbia. They’re playing with The Fresh and Onlys Friday at Local 506 in Chapel Hill.

Payne’s record store co-worker was Daniel Colussi (vocals, bass). In 2008, they started to form The Shilohs. Payne had seen Mike Komaszczuk (vocals, guitar) playing country music in a bar, got his number and asked him. Payne had jammed with drummer Ben Frey before, and asked him, too. In 2010, The Shilohs released their first EP, and their self-titled sophomore album came out in May on Light Organ Records.
The song “Student of Nature,” which Payne wrote, includes the line: “She’s half a page in The New York Times.” The song is about a girl, he said, that he met on tour last year. She’s in a band, too, which was written about in The New York Times, taking up half a page. Payne said listeners can take it both ways – that it was only half a page, or that half a page in that newspaper is pretty good.
“She’s larger than life, a sky’s-the-limit type woman,” Payne said. They’re just friends now, and live in different cities, he said.
Being on tour means building other relationships, too, like friendships with bands like Tennis, Real Estate and Devon Williams, whom Payne played the drums for on tour. Now The Shilohs are touring with The Fresh and Onlys -- also awesome guys, he said.
“It’s definitely a great community of jangly-type music we’ve been welcomed into in the States,” Payne said. They’ve played in North Carolina before, in Raleigh and Charlotte.
Payne learned to play the drums as a teenager but has more room with a guitar. Drumming is fun, he said, but you’re holding it together and have to focus and concentrate.
“You gotta be a metronome, solid as a rock,” he said. Payne likes guitar best, and singing.
So, back to the record stores where he worked the past decade.
“I learned about music from the old sages, the guys there,” Payne said. “When I started there, CD was king still, and then it started to turn to records again. Now everyone wants records.”
There’s still some love for cassette tapes, he thinks. His preferred medium is vinyl – at home, anyway. He likes looking at the album cover and sleeve.
“If I had my choice, everyone would listen to our records on LP, but I’m not a purist, an audiophile. However you’re getting it is fine,” he said.

WHO: The Shilohs (with The Fresh and Onlys)
WHEN: 9 p.m. Friday
WHERE: Local 506
506 W. Franklin St., Chapel Hill
TICKETS: $8-$10

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