American Music Club

Known for occasionally terrifying concertgoers by bursting into tears mid-song, Mark Eitzel of American Music Club has quite a reputation to uphold. It’s been almost 26 years since the band formed, but he has mustered up the courage to give it another go with a new band in 2008.

An SF institution for many years, AMC nearly grasped stardom in 1991 with the release of Everclear, an album that Rolling Stone called the best album of the year. But from then on, the band’s success faltered, ending with 1995’s Hello Amsterdam EP. Since then, the band has taken a new form, with Eitzel taking the lead as usual. Averse to the title of “emo pioneers,” the band is generally referred to in reference to the niche genre of “slowcore,” a sort of high-energy yet very slow genus of rock.

Their new album, entitled The Golden Age and released on Merge Records, keeps with the vibe of older projects while attempting to ease some of the “sadness” that previous albums might invoke. No mistake, it’s still powerful and Eitzel’s vocals in particular drip with enough longing, aching or pure passion to incite the most dramatic of receptions from the listener.

American Music Club – “All My Love” (from The Golden Age)

American Music Club – “I Know That’s Not Really You” (from The Golden Age)

The band will celebrate their CD release in SF tonight at The Independent with Rykarda Parasol and the Tower Ravens. 8pm, $15.