Lansing indie rock bands reunite for compilation album

Skyler Ashley

SUNDAY March 28 – Thanks to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the vast majority of independent rock groups in Lansing have not performed live for over a year. But our stubborn local guitarists are not totally asleep. “This must be the place: quality tubes from Lansing” is a new compilation that gives the local music scene a well-deserved opportunity to get rid of some of the pandemic rust.

GTG Records has teamed up with songwriter Rich Tupica, author of City Pulse’s longtime column “Turn it Down!” – to bring together some of Lansing’s best underground rock bands for a stacked compilation that features a fun mix of covers. If you want a solid sample of what’s going on with local indie music, this is a great starter pack to explore.

“Each group could choose the cover they wanted. No restrictions or themes,” Tupica said. “I felt that not only would it encourage more people to contribute, but also allow them to properly document a cover song that they were thinking of doing.”

Each group featured on “This Must Be the Place” has recorded a submission to their favorite artist. Classical bands covered in the compilation include post-punk bands like The Talking Heads, classic rock bands like Jefferson Airplane and The Who, and even grunge bands a la Alice in Chains.

“This compilation came together organically. It just felt like something had to happen,” Tupica said. “There was hardly any live performance, so it’s kind of a stopgap in that sense. It’s a way to get to know local bands without seeing them in person.”

“This Must Be the Place” is a fun piece of music that is distinctly representative of Lansing’s current and past underground rock scene. New bands like the Rodeo Boys and Silktail are emerging, as well as veterans like Wally Pleasant and The Plurals. The cover art, a nighttime photo of a Quality Dairy parking lot, is also a fun nod to Lansing culture.

The album is available for download 100% free on GTG Record BandCamp Page. Tupica said it was important that the compilation was easy to listen to and distribute.

“In short, it was just a fun project. And what’s really important here is that it’s completely free to listen and download. No profit, just fun,” he said.

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