In the music video for FIDLAR’s song “Cocaine,” Parks and Rec star Nick Offerman wreaks havoc on the streets of Los Angeles with his convincingly real prosthetic genitalia. If you’ve yet to hear (or catch) the surf punk quartet from the City of Angeles, “Cocaine” is a perfect introduction; their music is equal parts offensive, chaotic, and irreverently fun loving.
FIDLAR (an acronym for the credo “Fuck It Dog, Life’s A Risk”) formed in 2009 after members Zac Carper, Elvis Kuehn, Brandon Schwartzel, and Max Kuehn started jamming. From making a set list on a beer box two minutes before show time to performing at random house parties, the band members are all about living in the moment, doing what they feel, and making whatever type of music they want.
“We all kind of came from playing music and working on music that wasn’t necessarily what we wanted to do, so when we all got together and started playing it was like, ‘let’s just do what we want, let’s not worry about it too much,’” said Schwartzel.
Influenced by punk pop bands like Blink 182, and grandfathered in to the L.A. punk scene by Elvis and Max’s dad, TSOL keyboardist Greg Kuehn, the band writes about what they know: “Cheap Beer,” “Wake Bake Skate,” and “Stoke and Broke” are just part of the track list of FIDLAR’s self-titled debut.
Not surprisingly, the band’s shows are notoriously rowdy. Schwartzel recalls nights when audiences have rushed the stage, and one evening in particular when a fan dove off a roof into the crowd. This week, they head to Velvet Jones as part of a national tour with fellow pop punkers The Orwells, and it’s a show that Schwartzel is especially stoked about.
“I’m excited. We haven’t played in Santa Barbara very much, but I’ve got some good memories of that city,” said Schwartzel, who recalls performing at the club as part of a hip-hop group a few years back.
As for their supporting act, Schwartzel says he’s thrilled to be teaming up with The Orwells, who have attended FIDLAR shows, and hosted FIDLAR at their concerts.
“I’m excited [about touring with them],” he said. “They’re young kids, though, and I’m worried that we might corrupt them a little bit.”
Better still, both bands have teamed up for a 7-inch split single, which will be available for purchase on this tour only.
“I think we’ve always wanted to do one, so it worked out perfectly with having it for the tour… It’ll be a cool thing just to have at shows for people that bought tickets and came out — something that they can’t get anywhere else,” Schwartzel said.
FIDLAR plays Velvet Jones (423 State St.) with The Orwells on Friday, September 20 at 8 p.m. Call (805) 965-8676 or visit clubmercy.com for tickets and info.