In the span of the past year, I’ve tried to see Bloomington-based-dream-pop-honeys HOOPS 3 times, but didn’t succeed in doing so until they came to Ace of Cups in Columbus on June 6. This show was such a JAM! They played all the hits from their new album on Fat Possum (that we LOVE here on WXCU) called Routines, along with a lot of tracks from their older tapes!
We also got a chance to sit down with Drew Auscherman, founder and guitarist/keyboardist of HOOPS after the show to talk about the use of drum machines on their new album, Recording a Prefab Sprout Cover (which is coming out soon!!!!!!!!!!), the Best and Worst of Bloomington, and why Kroger Seltzer Water is better than La Croix…..
For this show, there was only one opener: Columbus/Athens based Dandelion Hunter. This is the second time I’ve been graced with the presence of this band, as they play through some lighthearted dreamy indie that will brighten up your day. Sweetened with the help of a Yamaha DX7 Synth alongside the traditional guitar indie lineup, they kept me smilin’ and boppin’ while waiting for my Boys from Bloomington to take the stage!
By the time the Bloomington Buddies took the stage, Ace of Cups (which was actually a former bank turned into one of my favorite rock clubs in Columbus) was pretty dang packed, so I was very fortunate to be up front with friends. (Speaking of which – I ran into a LOT of friends / acquaintances from the Greater Ohio DIY scene, including a good chunk of people who made the trip from Athens to see the show go down!)
They opened their set with the sunny opener to their new album “Suns Out” (which is still one of my favorite tracks on the whole album). Hearing a band that intentionally goes for that lower-fi “dreamy” aesthetic play in High Fidelity right in front of my face translated VERY well, which was a welcome experience. In between songs, guitarist Drew Auscherman’s guitar riffs, (including playing “Roundabout” by YES multiple times) vintage tee and straight cut stonewash jeans made me at times feel like I was watching a more nerdy version of Jessie and the Rippers in the absolute BEST way possible. In addition to Drew, Bassist Kevin Krauter and keyboardist Keegan Beresford both took the mics to sing songs that they wrote in HOOPs’ 3 tape, 1 EP, and 1 album catalog. They were also joined by Jack on Rhythm Guitar and Mark on Drums for this tour.
Before Keegan took the mic to sing standout track from Routines called “On Letting Go”, Drew put down his guitar and stepped over to a Yamaha DX7 commenting “If Kevin played synth instead of bass on this next song then we’d be a chillwave band!” They continued their set with a number of synthier tracks, before rounding out the set with Routines album closer jam “Worry”, and one of my favorite Hoops songs of all time, “La La La” to round out their set.
This show was such a fun time, and I’m only more excited to see what these Boys from Bloomington are up to next! After their tour, they’ll be taking a break until September, where they’re going to start work on their follow up record. Be sure to stay tuned to WXCU for the Latest HOOPS news delivered to you when it comes true!!!