Hailing from the college town of Pullman, Washington is Landrace, a 6-piece latin infused ska band who is looking to change the world of ska.
When I first saw them about a year ago, I was immediately impressed. They were a little rough as they were new on the scene, but the ambition they had and the energy they provided to the crowd was remarkable. I knew over time they would tighten up as a whole and become a force to reckon with in the Northwest scene.
One thing that helped Landrace tighten up quickly is the fact that most of their members are music majors. They have one of the most powerful and tight horn sections I have ever heard. Eric, Noah and Gabby all display the thorough training they have on both their own instruments and playing in a group. Back on the drums is David Ward and at the ripe age of 19, is definitely one of the better drummers I have ever seen and helps carry the band’s energy with his “college student” antics.
The other thing that helped them tighten up so quick is how hard they work. Landrace averages two shows a month and are doing music projects on the side weekly. This is the reason why they have been able to do so much in a very short year mixed in with school, work, and personal lives; and why you’ll be seeing a lot more of them in the future.
In just about a year, Landrace has already accomplished a lot as a band. They have won two battle of the bands, are competing in Ska-mic con voting (AND WON THE FIRST ROUND), as well as play shows across the entire state of Washington and hold down the local scene in Moscow, Idaho.
When seeing Landrace, you can expect to see a balanced set list of great tunes. They do both covers and originals in both English and Spanish. They cover four songs we all know and love consistently, including: What a Wicked Gang We Are, Take on Me, Special Brew and Impression That I Get. Two of their originals really stick out to me, Chemical Smile and Tan Shirt Guy, the latter about a local legend who gets down the hardest at every show.
Landrace is particularly good to me, because of their display that music is in fact the universal language. I can’t understand half of their music due to it being in Spanish, yet I want to go see them week in and week out because of the energy those songs carry, and the message that energy imposes on the crowd.
Be sure to catch Landrace in Seattle on September 3 @ The Highline for the All Ska & No Work Show, and give them a follow on social media.
-Stoney Toney is the former host of Skagape, an awesome show that was featured on 90.7 KZUU in Pullman, Washington and on Ska Bob Radio via the interwebs. A Ska Aficionado and Coug for Life, Stoney Toney appears courtesy of himself and will be back for more!