Battlehooch - Photo by: Ruthie Anne Swanson


This week, we’re excited to feature Battlehooch, a band whose sound and antics border on the indescribable, combining elements of art rock, prog, and pop to create funky, winning songs. After building a strong reputation as an energetic live band, who often performed on City streets with a homemade generator, the group released their debut EP, 2008’s Oof Owf. This week, the band returns with their first full length album, Piecechow, which maintains their trademark kitchen sink approach, with a variety of horns, synths and drum machines, while staying catchier than a lot of proggy music. That’s no small feat, especially considering that the band challenges itself to avoid ever doing the same thing twice.

If you haven’t experienced Battlehooch before, our interview will make clear that the band is comprised of some eclectic characters (which may be something of an understatement). The guys met in Santa Cruz, where they were music students at UCSC, and emerged as Battlehooch upon moving to San Francisco in 2006. Most of them now live and record together in a house in the Sunset District, and the close quarters have no doubt contributed to the guys’ development of a shared vocabulary of Battlevans (their tour van), Battlepads (their home), and Battlerags (the distinctive headbands group members wear). But behind their eccentricity, there’s a wealth of musical talent and inventive compositional ideas, fused into a unified aesthetic of do-anything musical freedom now captured on Piecechow.

We sat down with the band at The Bay Bridged Studio recently to discuss their origins, the meaning of “piecechow” and more. We’ve also included four songs from Piecechow in the episode.

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After tomorrow night’s CD release show, Battlehooch head out on a West Coast tour. You can get all of those tour dates at their MySpace page.

Wednesday, June 24th
Bottom of the Hill
with Deastro and Tempo No Tempo (Piecechow CD Release Party!)
9pm, $8/$10, 18+


– Visit Battlehooch on MySpace

– Head to the band’s web site, where you can purchase their albums

– Check out a video for “The Special Place” and other Battlehooch videos on Vimeo