APRIL 8, 2019
TONY TAYLOR AND THE NOVA BABIES
Aside from being absolutely enthralled by the name, these guys really appealed to me musically. Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies is a trio from right here in Las Vegas! I knew who these guys were from a show a while back. The New Years show from January 2018 at Beauty Bar, my band Dirt Halo actually shared the stage with Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies. Before I could realize what it was, I had figured out I had been humming one of their songs as they started playing; damn is their music catchy. From happy heartbreak to facing the inevitable, the lyricism from what I could catch was riveting. I love the line “there’s nothing wrong with you and there’s nothing wrong with me” from one of my favorite songs of theirs seemingly about heartbreak and growing apart. Throw that line on top of a pop-punk surfer backbeat and that’s what you get from this trio.
One of my all-time favorite bands is Alkaline Trio which is why I really connected with this particular group that night. I’m all about melancholy lyrics and 3-4 chord punk ballads. Keeping that in mind, the stage presence from these guys was subtle but powerful. Tony Taylor(singer) had a lot of Jack White inspired movements while pouring his feelings into the microphone which I thought was a really cool aspect of their performance.
Meeting The Band:
After wrapping up the concert, I ran out of the little house turned venue to catch Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies outside to do a little Question and Answer. The quirky band name comes from Tony Taylor’s “intuitive phrase for Millennials or youngsters.” My interpretation of that would be like Millennials are misunderstood or other-worldy, maybe coming from some planet “Nova” or something. Tony Taylor then added, “the name also correlates to an old orange Chevy Nova that we couldn’t get to run.” So, was this statement alluding to the band not being able to start well? I’d like to know the full history behind that. To me it looks as though things are running well; like they got that Nova running after all!
Further discussing with the band, Tony Taylor said one of his most prominent influences for his music is Jack White. This made me happy because I called it out right when I saw them start jamming. The band seemed pleased that I compared them to a modern day The Killers, which of course in a huge compliment. They were and are still a very successful group of dudes.
The bassist, Eric, had the coolest demeanor I had ever seen from a performer; just a real down-to-earth kind of dude. Eric really set the tone for their performance with his quirky witted one liners or silly sounds and phrases. I really enjoyed this in the mix of everything, made the whole experience really comfortable and entertaining.
Being a drummer, I had to hunt down Charlie, drummer for Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies, to ask him about his experience in the music industry and talk about other drum stuff no one who reads this article will understand. Drummer language is a whole other beast, don’t try to understand. Charlie told me had had been playing for over 30 years starting in Illinois. I was fascinated by his rhythm and overall understanding and mastery of the ever important back beat. Side note; the back beat is a term used for the meat-and-potatoes of the song, nothing flashy or fancy, just solid rhythmic time-keeping. This was the perfect ingredient for this band. If you had Derek Grant or Jimmy Sullivan(R.I.P) behind the kit of this band, it just simply wouldn’t work. The simplicity and structural integrity Charlie was providing was yet another favorite aspect of Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies.
My overall opinion of Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies is if you haven’t heard them, you need to. Like mentioned above, I really enjoyed their set, their performance was stellar, and the music is on par with that of some of my favorite bands. Definitely recommend seeing these guys at Evel Pie on April 5th!
-Into The Pit With Annie