Smashing debut brings Muffs back for more


Who: The Bloody Muffs

When: 11 p.m. Friday

Where: Cedars Lounge,

23 N. Hazel St., Youngstown;


By John Benson

After a memorable show last fall, New York’s The Bloody Muffs have booked a return trip to Youngstown for a Friday show at Cedars to make sure the entire evening wasn’t an aberration.

“We played at University Pizzeria, and it was an incredible show,” said singer-guitarist Jason “Jonesy” Jones, calling from the Big Apple.

“We loved the vibe of Youngstown. There was so much energy in the crowd. Everybody was so supportive and went nuts for us like we’ve never seen. So we’re trying to find out why it happened. The one thing we know is that we saw it happen with our own eyes, and that’s when we knew we had to get right back to Northeast Ohio, which is in striking distance of New York City. It’s only a day away, so we’re coming back to see whether it was real or a fluke.”

Jones said the trio was so taken back by its Mahoning County experience that it instantly booked its current show the day the group returned home from last fall’s tour.

Apparently, it’s an exciting time for the punk-based act, which boasts influential roots from the old school (The Dead Boys) as well as the grunge movement (Nirvana).

“The focus is on songwriting,” Jones said. “We’re not just throwing noisy songs out there. We’re actually taking time to write them. We have three-part harmonies on all songs. We’re just putting that together with the music in a way that really hasn’t been done very often. A lot of times, the grungier bands tend to be too noisy, and a lot of the punk bands tend to be noisy, so we kind of rein it in with like The Buzzcocks or Nirvana or Pixies sounds.”

So far, the group has released two albums, “Heavy Flow” and “Sloppy Seconds.” Though both full-lengths came out in 2009, the threesome is at work on its next project. However, no new material is getting played on the current tour.

Speaking of hitting the road outside of the, say, more open-minded East Coast, with a band name such as The Bloody Muffs, controversy must surround the group as it tours across the Midwest.

“It’s kind of a 50-50 split,” Jones said. “Sometimes it’s a deterrence, and sometimes people are open to us with arms wide open. When we were trying to book shows in some areas, they wouldn’t consider us because of the name. But when we played outside of Milwaukee, that guy booked us without even hearing us, saying, ‘Any band that calls themselves that has to play here.’ So it kind of swings both ways.”

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