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Volume 68, Issue 82, January 27, 2003

Arts & Entertainment

Down-to-earth rockers Finch energize Engine

By Dixie Ann Dalton
The Daily Cougar

Stepping into the band Finchis tour bus, one may notice something a little peculiar to the usual lifestyle of an up-and-coming rock band. The aroma of a bakery instantly hits the nose. There are no scantly clad women or band members boozing it up. These down-home boys actually have a tour-bus driver who bakes them bread and prepares homemade soup on a daily basis in order to make them feel more at home.

Photo courtesy of MCA records.
Members of Finch, vocalist Nate Barcalow, guitarists Randy Strohmeyer and Alex Linares, bassist Derek Doherty and drummer Alex Pappas, are trying hard to be the first band to bridge the gap between hard rock and pop punk.

At home is how frontman Nate Baraclow must have felt as he laid down on the couch of the beautiful, plush bus while holding and playing his acoustic guitar, brainstorming through new material prior to putting it on paper. (The acoustic guitar was never seen on stage, and is strictly used for songwriting and offstage practicing and entertaining.)

Making himself comfortable across from Baraclow was drummer Alex Pappas. Both of the guys are extremely nice and respectful, and enjoy their stardom. Arrogance is not an issue with Finch.

When asked about the meaning of the title track of their new album What It Is to Burn, Baraclow stated, "It symbolizes desperation. To be isolated from something that keeps you going. The song is kind of written as a letter from hell, a letter of desperation from hell. The song is our cry out. This is our first attempt to try to alert everybody that Finch is coming."

Finch first got together in 2000 under the name NUMB in Temecula, Calif. Since the band has been recording under the name Finch with DriveThru Records, the lineup has added guitarist Randy Strohmeyer.

The band relentlessly practiced in their garages, and wanted to make it in the industry so bad that they lied to get gigs in clubs by saying they would have a high number of people turn out.

"We were very, very persistent," Baraclow said. "I want to be on the Conan OiBrien Show." Bandmate Pappas added, "I canit complain. Iim having a really good time and I just hope that I can keep going on this path, and things keep going well for our band."

Obviously their persistence paid off, because the Engine Room was packed with spectators ages 13 to 25, moshing, singing, screaming and jumping about the floor area of the venue. The show was full of energy.

Finch headlined the event, playing after three bands that the members had handpicked to open up for them. Fivespeed, a band from Arizona that is on Virgin Records, opened the show. They were followed by DriveThru Records bands SteelTrain and From Autumn To Ashes (both from New York).

The crowd was considerate and collected throughout the first three bandsi performances. However, there was a feeling of anxiousness as everyone waited for Finch to come into view. And when they did, the audience went wild. Finch played eight songs, including one new song. The band returned for a two-song encore that included one track off its 2001 EP, Falling Into Place.

Overall, the show was great. There were lots of youngsters, many of whom had parents who came along and waited inside the venueis doors to catch the last song or two.

Finch is a great band that just wants as much exposure as possible. "Check us out ... If you like it, buy it ... If you donit, download it," Pappas said. These are the words of a man who truly loves his fans.


Engine Room

the verdict:Finch is a down to earth with explosive energy. Check iem out!

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