Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Deer Tick, and comedian Chris Crofton, slated for Sunday show at Saturn

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Outside of the humorous antics between band members, a band tour isn’t the usual hangout for a comedian. For Americana rock outfit Deer Tick, however, welcoming stand-up comedians into their tour was an idea they couldn’t shake. Where most bands have another band open for them, Deer Tick’s show will follow a stand-up performance. 

The band will perform two sets per night on their fall tour, which corresponds with their most recent release, a new record in two volumes: “Deer Tick Vol. 1” and “Deer Tick Vol. 2,” both out now. The two-volume release led them to spring for a two set show, which got them thinking they wanted to try something a little different for their opener.

“We figured since we were going to do two sets of music of our own on this tour that it would be smart to do something different,” said Ian O’Neil, guitarist for the group. “We entertained the idea of a magician at one point.”

Forgoing bunnies and silk hats, they ultimately decided on the comedic route, with comedians Chris Crofton and Jena Friedman joining the caravan for tour dates through Nov. 11. Crofton will open for the band on Sunday when they perform the aptly named “Twice Is Nice: An Evening With Deer Tick” at the Saturn in Birmingham. 

After the comedian opener, the first set is strictly acoustic, followed by a more raucous, louder second half. 

“It makes sense for the trajectory of the evening,” O’Neil said. “It feels great to start with the acoustic stuff.”

The tour, which kicked off last week in Nashville at the Americana Music Festival, comes almost exactly ten years after the band’s first album, “War Elephant,” which was released in early September of 2007. The band celebrated by sharing a “Happy Birthday War Elephant” video to their Facebook page. Ten years later, O’Neil said “a lot and nothing at all” has changed.

“I think we’ve gone through periods where we’ve gone through different genres of music and indulged everyone’s songwriting,” O’Neil said. “But everything seems to come back around to the songwriting core of the band. We’ve all gotten much better as musicians. We know how to play together really well. We’ve ended up learning and picking up a lot of stuff on the way.”

Before the tour, Deer Tick played several festivals throughout the summer. 

“One’s like a sampler platter and one is like an entire seven-course meal,” O’Neil said, comparing festivals and venue shows. “[For festivals] you want to give the most direct idea of what your band is and the most streamlined idea.”

O’Neil said they’re excited to be back on their own tour, where they’ll be playing at smaller venues for longer periods of time.

“We get to play a bunch of new songs and a bunch of music,” O’Neil said. “We’ve been doing so many festival shows that it kind of starts to feel like, you start to crave the club and theater shows. We actually get to go out and be a working band again.”

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