Posts Tagged ‘ants’

“Ants” EP is up.

It was the summer of 2007 and the heat was unbearable. A family (maybe I should say an army) of ants had found salvation in the basement of my Broadway St. apartment. At night I would overhear their plans to take over the house, then Lowell, then the world. We had to put a stop to this. They were everywhere. They were multiplying.
Neighbor Cody Rico recounted ancient myths of punk rock being the only reliable weapon against insect armies. So we plugged in the amps and set up the drum kit, and started composing the concept album that would exterminate our violent infestation.
ANTS is a 4-song EP with more strength than a cement truck full of pesticides. At the completion of the recording we went down to the basement to clean up and see what kind of damage we had done. There was not an ant to be seen. Either they got scared and ran off, or they dropped dead from the sheer energy of THE FORBIDDEN BEAT.
Would they have actually taken over the world had they lived? Maybe. Or are they still planning to take over the world by influencing the minds of young musicians? We will never know. From the moment that the ants disappeared, the basement was dubbed THE ANT CELLAR. Today the residents live up to the story by hosting live punk and hardcore shows for an all-ages audience.

Listen to the album that won (or started) a war with the ants.

The Ant Cellar

Bringing all ages shows to the Merrimack Valley” is the motto of this Lowell basement-turned-venue.  The low ceilings and graffiti-filled walls make it a welcoming stage to punk and hardcore bands and fans alike, but that is not to say that any exclusive genre is meant to play there.  Tom Southerton, promoter and booker of the Ant Cellar, tries to keep it diverse. “But most of the bands that I know are punk or hardcore bands. Plus it’s easier to get them to confirm a show,” he says. TRAGWAG, armed with an acoustic guitar and a banjo, is a regular performer at the Ant Cellar, sometimes playing between sets. Dopapod, one of Boston’s best funk jam bands, got everyone dancing until the wee hours of the night on the first stop of their east coast tour this fall.
The people at the Ant Cellar usually have more reasons to celebrate than it being Friday.  We have seen birthday bashes, going away parties, and Halloween festivities go down underground.  And instead of singing “happy birthday” really out of tune, Dopapod bust into The Beatles version as soon as they heard someone mention it was Fran’s birthday.
The positive vibe of the basement is something very special, and for a city with a lot of underground bands but not many places to play, that’s a good thing.  Where Tom grew up on the MA North Shore, he frequented The Art Space to see local bands and have a good time. Moving to Lowell, he noticed that most of the venues are 21+ bars and a little out of the way.  Now, right off south campus, there is a basement you can walk into, high-five your 18 year old friends, and headbang the night away.
Watch out for shows coming up in 2010!