Photo: Steven Ruud
Glow God makes the type of music parents warn their kids about.
It’s visceral, bloody knuckles, beer-swilling, cigarette-puffing, sweat-dripping rock music that’s about as clean and polished as a dive bar urinal.
But that’s just the surface. Underneath, it’s inviting, sweet and earnest all the same, a mosh-pit brotherhood of kindred spirits that opens its collective arms to all who dare to toss themselves into it.
And for all the testosterone, booze and ire that Glow God has built its arsenal of grungy gut punches and brawny brain stumpers with, it’s the chemistry between its members that keeps them firing so cleanly.
“All of us have played in bands for over a decade now, and as cheesy as this sounds, we’ve never felt the sort of magic we do with Glow God before,” singer/bassist Taylor McKenzie said. “We don’t have grandiose dreams, but we do feel like we have to do it … like we owe it to ourselves.”
McKenzie and guitarist Tim Buchanan formed the group in late 2012 as their old band was on its last legs, aiming for a different plan than the pair’s hardcore punk past.
“The running joke is that we wanted to start a band that sounded like (alt-metal band) Helmet, the catch being none of us had ever listened to Helmet,” McKenzie said.
The act eventually found its current drummer in Tony Manganaro and another guitarist in Payton Green, each of whom resided in Denton, Texas before moving up to the Sooner State in the last few months.
Together for less than a year, the group has already released its debut album, House of Distractions, a thunderous 10-song record that has garnered comparisons to classics like Nirvana and Neil Young & Crazy Horse — as well as contemporaries like Destruction Unit and FIDLAR — from friends, fans and outsiders alike.
The effort was recorded at Dust House Studio in Oklahoma City and released through Play Pinball! Records earlier this year.
“It’s only out of the grace of our friends that this album exists,” McKenzie said. “There’s so much emotional support in it, and we try to reciprocate that.”
Playing Friday at the Capitol House — a private residence for which, if you search hard enough, you can find the address — Glow God is already hard at work on a follow-up, writing songs that are a little more “laid back” and “longwinded” than its predecessor. An East Coast tour is planned for this summer, and the four-piece is aiming to have recording done by then. That ambition is born as much from a respect for and debt to its fans as a fire burning within.
“This whole experience with the album and the tours we went on last year really got us re-motivated on the untouchable, beautiful essence of DIY music in the world,” McKenzie said. “It’s a sort of relationship that will drive you somewhere. It pushes me, and I think it pushes everyone else, like we might have something here.”