Based out of Denver, Squeaky Feet exhibit a musical approach that pushes the limits of progressive rock. The quintet of guitarists Colin Shore and Greg King, bassist Jimmy Finnegan multi-instrumentalist Brian Keller and drummer Kevin D’Angelo incorporate elements of jazz, funk and metal with Shore, Finnegan and Keller alternating on vocals. On November 17, people will get to check it out for themselves when the band puts out their first full-length with “Cause For Alarm.”
For those around Connecticut looking to experience it live, they can head on over to the Arch Street Tavern in Hartford on October 27. Local psych-rockers Canopy will be kicking the night off at 8pm.
I had a talk with King and Finnegan ahead of the show about the band’s New England roots, the making of the upcoming release, performing at the Arch Street Tavern and what people can expect while listening to Cause For Alarm after it’s unveiled.
RD: After originally starting out at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Squeaky Feet, the band relocated to Denver in 2018. What initially made you guys want to move to that particular city?
GK: Kevin, Colin and myself all lived in Boston while attending Berklee and then Kevin moved to Denver pretty soon after graduating due to getting a job. I came out to visit him and the music scene was off the wall, it was insane and very different from Boston. That pretty much drew me out there, then Colin followed suit and then we started the band. The local scene in Colorado is very strong throughout the whole state and that pretty much enticed all of us to go out there. Jimmy has also lived in Colorado for a good portion of his life.
JF: Yeah, I pretty much grew up there.
RD: Very cool. Next month, Squeaky Feet are going to be releasing their debut album titled “Cause For Alarm.” So first off, where was it recorded and what was the experience like making your first full-length album together?
JF: The principal recordings, which were just the rhythm tracks, were recorded at Violet Recording in Boulder. Then most of the remainder of the sessions happened at our producer’s house. You can do that so easily these days so we just took advantage of that situation in a good way. It was really fun to see the songs come to life and everything, my favorite part of it has been doing mix revisions and all that while fine tuning all the sections of the songs to be exactly what we always envisioned them to be. We’ve been playing these songs for years at this point, so the recording process itself was pretty straightforward but getting into the mixing process and doing all of those fine tunings has been a real blast because you see the songs in a different light.
RD: Who was the producer that you guys worked with?
GK: Dylan Gleit. He’s a local guy who plays in a band called Eminence Ensemble and he’s a really good guitar player. He’s just awesome at what he does, whether it’s either playing, writing or producing. Like Jimmy was saying, it was cool that we could go there and we could all record our stuff digitally. There’s all these modeling amps and stuff like that you can plug into to get huge guitar and bass tones without having to spend a bunch of money at a studio and lug a bunch of gear around. It’s my first time using gear like this to record and it’s been super fun, Dylan knows exactly what he’s doing with all that stuff.
RD: That’s great. What are your thoughts on coming back to the New England region to perform at the Arch Street Tavern on October 27th? Is this going to be your first time playing there?
GK: Yeah, it’ll be our first time at that venue in particular. A couple of us in the band are from the East Coast so we’re always stoked when we’re able to return to the area. I believe Kevin and Colin have played there a bunch before and I know they’re excited to be coming back there in particular. When we first started venturing out from Denver, that was one of the first venues that came to everybody’s mind as far as playing out in Connecticut. I think Stella Blues in New Haven was the last venue we played there, but I’ve never been to the Arch Street Tavern so I’m looking forward to it.
RD: From what I hear, it’s a really cool spot. When “Cause For Alarm” comes out, what can people expect from the album when they give it a listen?
JF: They can expect to sit down for a while and hopefully they’ll listen to it all the way through if they got the patience for it, it’s around 86 minutes long. It’s pretty long, but I think it’s worth it to just sit down and listen to the whole thing. We’ve worked pretty hard on these tunes and if you’re into the epic prog odyssey kind of vibe with an album, then I think you’d really enjoy it. It’s got elements of Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree and some of our favorite prog albums, we look to those for inspiration as far as the flow of the record goes and all that. If you go into it with that kind of mindset and you already have an interest in progressive rock, fusion and that sort of thing then I think you’ll enjoy it.
GK: People always ask me about what kind of music I play and I think it’s just progressive music. Stuff like progressive rock, progressive fusion and progressive electronica, just progressive in every way possible. Like Jimmy was saying, there’s some pretty long songs with lots of composed sections. All the jamming that we do live isn’t on the album, but there’s some psychedelic and trippy effects.
Who: Squeaky Feet
When: Oct. 27, 2023 at 8 p.m.
Where: Arch Street Tavern, 85 Arch St., Hartford, CT, 06103
Rob Duguay is an arts & entertainment journalist based in Providence, RI who is originally from Shelton, CT. Outside of the Connecticut Examiner, he also writes for DigBoston, The Aquarian Weekly, The Providence Journal, The Newport Daily News, Worcester Magazine, New Noise Magazine and numerous other publications. While covering mostly music, he has also written about film, TV, comedy, theatre, visual art, food, drink, sports and cannabis.