Within recent decades, punk has taken a backseat to the overwhelming presence of alternative rock within Austin’s music scene. Local band Free Kittens & Bread deserves notable standing, as their music channels the spirit of punk into a sound that resonates with indie rock fans. Vibrant and fun, their music features alternative compositions that breathe lively rhythm into their catalog that you just can’t get out of your head. In addition, Chase Spruiell’s incredible vocals add to the band’s undeniable spunk. As we go through the suffering that is daylight savings and the transition of seasons, we are dusting off their last album and giving it all the love that it deserves. You should do the same.
The title of Free Kittens & Bread’s sophomore LP American Miserablist reflects the band’s background. Free Kittens & Bread aren’t afraid to get honest about their disappointments with growing up. Their track “Winners & Losers” is about coming to terms with what it means to lose.
Nobody ever told me that I was going to lose/Nobody told me what to do– (“Winners & Losers”/American Miserablist)
Free Kittens & Bread’s “Brainless” takes a more upbeat stance. The track gets delightfully rowdy and energetic.
I didn’t want to feel stupid/But there I was being human/It’s like heaven to just forget it/But it hurts like hell to recollect it – (Brainless”/American Miserablist)
Along with their unique sound, the band features a name that only ATX could boast and still make their persona as cool as their music. The obscure name “Free Kittens & Bread” originated when two original bandmates, who were in a punk band at the time, drove around their hometown of Princeton, Texas. They saw signs painted on plywood and followed them, leading them to a family in front of their house with loaves of bread and kittens. Although they didn’t come home with a kitten, they took one of the signs, and years later it helped to create the unforgettable name.
Speaking of unforgettable, ensure you listen to these additional tracks off of their album American Miserablist. Noted as favorites amongst On Vinyl staff, these songs are collectors items of alt-indie punk that you won’t want to miss out on. Jam out to “No Better” and “Good Song, Bad Time” and prepare to feel things you only thought you could feel in high school–alone in your basement, hating the world as you drink straight out of the watermelon vodka bottle you snuck out of the kitchen pantry.
Current band members include Chase Spruiell, Mark Hawley, Gabe Garcia, Nathan Lugo, Cameron Taggart, and Kaci Taylor. Free Kittens & Bread have gone on seven tours throughout their history together, with their most recent one lasting an immensely impressive 48 days with a 38 show line-up; cute and hustle-y. Just how we like ’em.
Make sure to stay glued to their social media pages for further show announcements, and to share the good news that is American Miserablist with all the weirdos and baddies you know and hold close.
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Co-Written by: Cierra Schepp
Photo Credit: Renee Dominguez