Tag Archives: Dan Francia

A foretaste of New Jersey rock without Maxwell’s: Speed the Plough, East of Venus play Mexicali Live

Speed the Plough performs at Mexicali Live in Teaneck, N.J. on July 18, 2013. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Speed the Plough performs at Mexicali Live in Teaneck, N.J. on July 18, 2013. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

We know what it’s going to be like without Maxwell’s. We learned it pretty clearly at Mexcali Live in Teaneck, N.J., on Thursday, July 18.

Speed the Plough, a very Maxwell’s-identified band, ripped through an excellent headlining set after warmups by Lianne Smith and East of Venus.

Toni (Paruta) Baumgartner and Cindi Merklee of Speed the Plough.  (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Toni (Paruta) Baumgartner and Cindi Merklee of Speed the Plough. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Nobody in the audience crowded the edge of the stage, which is tradition at Maxwell’s. Not there’s anything wrong with that. It just seemed a little alien. But you had the distinct feeling that if you tried to stand in front of the stage, you’d be shouted away by the audience or escorted away by management. So it seemed better to keep a bit of distance.

Only one person in the crowd stood near the front of a rather cavernous room filled with tables, chairs and stools — and he was far, far from his usual front-and-center spot.

Never mind that the sound at Mexicali is crisp and the raised stage provides sight lines that are, to say the least, more audience-friendly than Maxwell’s. Continue reading

It’s harvest time for Speed the Plough — and The Trypes, too

Speed the Plough: John Baumgartner, Dan Francia, Ian Francia, Michael Baumgartner, Marc Francia and Toni Baumgartner.

There are some big doings at Speed the Plough HQ. The latest incarnation of the band, a part of network of bands linked to The Feelies, has announced a deal for their new CD.

They’ve signed with Great Meadows, N.J, -based Dromedary Records, which will issue the band’s new disc, Shine, in August.  The lineup for the new album will feature the great guitar and vocal work of new Plough-man Ed Seifert (of Ed Seifert and the Stimulus Package, though you may also recognize Ed as The Feelies’ tech) and guest appearances by two former STPers and current members of Wild Carnation, Brenda Sauter (who’s also in The Feelies) and Rich Barnes.

What’s more, a compilation of tunes from The Trypes, another part of The Feelies’ family, is also nearing completion.

Click through to the jump for the full announcement. And be sure to check out the Speed the Plough website for updates. Continue reading