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Three Cheers for Shower Beers

By Alexa Smith, Staff Writer

Cruising home from a real shitty day of work, you’re singingIsaac Brock-style to Good News for People Who Love Bad Newsand smell like chicken and more than a hint of B.O. You pull into the driveway, go inside to the fridge, grab a brewskie, strip down to your skivvies and have yourself a shower beer because you deserve it. There’s just something about the contrast between the warm embrace of a shower and a cold, refreshing beer—you've gotta try it, then you’ll know.

“Shower Beers comes from that feeling that you get when you’re in the shower and you’re just chugging on a beer," said drummer Drew Davis--otherwise known as Dizzy or Coach Davies to the rest of SB--when asked about the band’s rather peculiar name. "It’s a really cathartic feeling, you know. I work at Wings Over so we get off at like four o'clock in the morning and there’s nothing that feels better after working a 12-hour shift than getting home, getting in the shower with a nice cold beer and drinking it in the shower."

Just as great as the steamy, refreshing combo is Shower Beers. Shower Beers were born in November 2012, meaning they're just passing their first anniversary together. Video game enthusiasts with a strong love of cheeseburgers, members Drew Davis, Jon Gordon and DJ Wymer truly have a noticeable passion for music with a unique sound that they’ll leave up to you to define.

“It would be easier for someone listening to us to describe it, because when I think of it I don’t really know how I want it to sound,” said vocalist and guitar player DJ Wymer, or Dern to his friends.

They’re like most cats bee-boppin’ around Athens: Davis and Wymer ride bikes, Gordon and Davis are big sci-fi nuts and Genesee beer is a lifestyle. But when they’re making music, they vibe off of one another's "Prince of Darkness" to make some great stuff.

Brought forth from the ranks of the Athens music scene, the three hooligans joined forces, having finally met some people who shared their taste in music.

“I didn’t hang out with kids that, like, listened to the same music that I listen to except Drew," said Gordon, the group's bass player. "So when we met DJ and all the other kids, it was just perfect because we were all finally into the same stuff and we didn’t have to try to find house shows or anything. When we met DJ, that’s when we all started hanging out a lot."

Davis and Gordon were acquaintances from high school in Medina, Ohio, and started playing together once they came to Athens. Wymer fell into the picture when Davis met him online.

“I would always see DJ walking around with a Tigers Jaw tank on and his fresh little tats from college and I’d always be like, ‘Man, what a douchebag,'" said Davis. “So we both thought the other was a douchebag and we probably still do."

They eventually got over this douchebaggery and became close pals. In the beginning, Shower Beers were more of a jam band, just hanging out and playing rad tunes “We had two songs and played a Jimmy Buffet cover, then called it a day,” said Wymer.

When discussing their style as Shower Beers, words become difficult. For starters, picture a punk version of Black Sabbath but more grunge, with a few dashes of emo and blues.

“I don’t know, my dad likes it,” said Gordon. “We’re a band that can bridge the gap between the genres that are the other bands in Athens. Like Small Steps is a really loud, screaming punk band. And Method Air is more of an alternative band. So we’re the best of both worlds with every song that we have."

Shower Beers pulls its personality from a perfect combination of each of the guys: Wymer's passionate, Gordon's dedicated, and Davis is certainly a free spirit. They’re like three peas in a pod and with musical chemistry that’s hard to miss. The music-making process is a team effort with few issues involved.

“DJ will usually come up with a riff and we’ll mutually talk our way through a song or DJ will sometimes have ideas thought out and we’ll just try each one and see if it will work or not,” said Gordon.

After kicking around tunes and ideas, Shower Beers released their first EP Smooth Jazz in January of this year. The EP features heavy, weighed down grunge guitar with smooth riffs, spooky vocals and loud cymbals.

“It was all DIY, just us and our friend Pete and his computer and a few microphones,” said Gordon. “We just wrote a bunch of songs so we could start playing shows and people would know our stuff. So we just put it all together and did it in a weekend.”

“I wish we would have spent a little more time on it, but for how much work we put into it, it’s fine," said Wymer. "It’s pretty decent. Like our new stuff, we definitely put more effort into it."

Shower Beers have recently been working on their new, currently untitled LP, set to release in the very near future. The band got together over some beer and burgers and made some new tunes in Davis' parents’ basement. “We were back in high school all over again,” said Wymer.

The new EP is very different from their first album, showing a new, more mature Shower Beers that proves the true potential of the band with a huge sound of heavy drums and thick guitar and bass. A close friend mixed the album, giving it a legitimate pro-audio studio sound.

“We went up to the RTV building and our friend Harold [Bon] recorded it for us," said Davis. "We were there for six hours and tracked it and then we went back a different day and DJ did the vocals."

As for the overall idea of the album, Wymer said, “I think each song kind of has its own theme. Something I really try to do when we’re writing them is even if the songs don’t sound the same, as long as they flow together, that’s what I’m going for.”

Shower Beers and fans all patiently await the new album’s arrival, eager with anticipation.

“I’m pretty pumped about it, especially when we just listened to it," said Wymer. "But I don’t know. Part of me always wants it to be a little bit better so I want to go back and do stuff to it, but if we don’t get the chance to, I’ll still be pretty happy about how it turned out."

“It’s driving, it’s got drive," said Davis. "It’s something you could go driving to. But not after you had a shower beer.”

“Yeah that’d be illegal," responded Wymer. "Driving home to have a shower beer.”

“Or you could listen to it while drinking a shower beer," said Gordon. "Good shower music.”

Also excited about the final result was the mix master, Harold Bon. Bon is a Music Production major at Ohio University and a member of Athens’ band Ghost Stories, as well as Busy Busy with Wymer and Gordon.

‘I’m just looking forward to having everyone listen to it. I think it sounds good,” said Bon. “It’s nice to record something that I would listen to myself.”

“I haven’t recorded with them before, but they are my friends," added Bon. "It was definitely really easy. I just have to master it, just final touches. Should be done next week."

The guys are all very excited to play their new material at their home, Castle Genessee, in front of the loyal members of the Athens music scene. Shower Beers have played shows at The Union and recently played at Lobsterfest 2013, but tend to stick to the chaotic and exciting atmosphere of house shows.

“We are like the party house band in some ways because we always play the party shows,” said Davis. “Sometimes, if you’re lucky, I might take a shower beer while we’re playing.”

You could say they’re the life of the party, and with Shower Beers, there’s never a dull moment.

“We played New Years at Castle Genessee and that was just the biggest alcohol infused show that we’ve ever played," said Gordon. “Yeah, DJ crowd surfed,” added Davis.

“Yeah apparently that happened," responded Wymer. "It’s kind of fuzzy. This one time during a guitar solo, apparently someone picked me up right before I started it and I was hitting my guitar on the ceiling trying to play it, hitting my knuckles on the ceiling and nails and a bunch of sketchy stuff. It was cool. Hopefully someone that was there remembers it."

But their friends are always there for the fun. They have to be, considering they’re in the other bands. “I like playing with pretty much all Athens bands because most of them are my friends,” said Wymer.

But at times this can be frustrating for Shower Beers. “Usually I’m playing multiple sets, so I’m not really sure I like playing with other bands in Athens when I am the other bands,” said Davis.

Currently, in addition to playing in Shower Beers, Wymer plays bass in Busy Busy and in Small Steps. Davis also plays in Small Steps and Jon plays in Busy Busy and occasionally for Method Air.

“Out of six or seven people, there are four or five bands," added Davis. "I wish that more kids would get involved and more kids would play music. I hate how sometimes it just becomes one big circle jerk. I don’t like that. I wish kids would just start a band. And if it sucks, it sucks. It's not that hard to stand out and people criticize it a lot for it being the same kids all the time and it being the same people. Nobody is starting a band. If you start a band, we’ll give you a show."

Even though they're being stretched thin, Shower Beers don’t plan on going anywhere. Despite their different paths—Davis focused in on Journalism, Wymer on the track to becoming a history teacher and Gordon having already moved out of Athens planning his next step—Shower Beers will continue playing music for their fans.

Wymer made sure to confirm this, saying, “We’re definitely going to stick around."

#alexasmith #featurearticle

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