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The Midnight Stroll (vinyl release), Casual Strangers

Fri., Sept. 2, 2016, 9:30pm

Hole in the Wall

2538 Guadalupe, 512/302-1470

www.holeinthewallaustin.com

“My soul is getting lost in these neon lights! All alone and I don’t feel like dancing tonight!” So sings Aaron Behrens on Midnight Stroll’s debut album, Heartbreak Bugaloo. “I wrote that song a long time ago, before my hiatus from Ghostland Observatory, when I was really needing a break,” reveals the singer. In 2013, the footloose frontman of Austin’s biggest electro-pop export put his bread-and-butter band on hold and shaved off his signature braids. Midnight Stroll, a rock band that began as a solo project, then developed into a partnership with multi-instrumentalist/producer Jonas Wilson (of homegrown notables Lomita and the White White Lights). “He’s such a huge influence on the sound,” says Behrens. “I don’t see the Midnight Stroll without Jonas.” This summer, with Ghostland back in action, the two doubled down on an epic album owing debts to Bowie, Queen, and Cher, one on which every song sounds like a single. It’s the best anyone’s heard from the 34-year-old group founder, whose extravagant pipes unload with emotion and self-refection. “My father had gotten ill and he was really falling out, going in and out of the hospital,” acknowledges Behrens. “My mom and him got a divorce, so, you know, that heartbreak sank in with all this too. It was a deep and heavy time in my life.” – Kevin Curtin
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