‘Electric Manland’: Sat. Nite Duets pays homage to iconic Beatles coverWritten by Matt Liasse | | firstname.lastname@example.org
The cover for Sat. Nite Duets’ third album “Electric Manland” consists of more than 50 cutouts. Inspired by The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” it even includes the drum from the “Lonely Hearts” album cover. The collage features famous icons and characters that have some significance for the band.
“We like [‘Sgt. Pepper’s’], but I wouldn’t call it a favorite,” said drummer Joe Guszkowski. “I think we were just more interested in the concept of the artwork.”
Some faces that appear on the album cover include Elton John, David Bowie, Ellen DeGeneres, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Batman.
“The cover is just a collection of people and friends of ours that we kind of look up to or that influence the album in some way,” Guszkowski said. “We all contributed; we all got to pick a few people that we wanted to be on the cover.”
The foreground features Vanna White in front of a “Wheel of Fortune” board, which spells out the album’s title. The band would often watch the game show during the months spent recording.
“It just became part of our daily routine,” Guszkowski said. “Things in our daily life were kind of absorbed into the album cover.”
Shrek also appears on the cover.
“It’s sort of just a running joke,” Guszkowski said. “One of us really likes ‘Shrek’ and always wants to watch ‘Shrek’; one of us really hates ‘Shrek’ and never wants to watch [it]. It comes up a lot.”
Beyoncé also makes an appearance.
“She’s just gotta be there,” Guszkowski said.
The Milwaukee band formed while the members were in college after merging their two high school bands, Two Kids Get New Books and Boy Scouts. The two bands combined as a five-piece in 2009.
The band’s music falls somewhere between Jimi Hendrix and Jimmy Buffett on the roundtable of rock ’n’ roll.
“We were looking back a little further into the past,” Guszkowski said. “I think the spirit of those guys is in there.”
The 11-track album includes songs like “The Three Wisemen,” “I Have The Wine” and “Women’s Prison” and features added strings and trumpet on some tracks. Guszkowski said the band’s three albums show progression.
“We don’t really talk about … what we want things to sound like. We just want that to progress naturally,” he said. “I do think all of us were committed to making a more rock record.”
“Electric Manland” is heavier rock ’n’ roll than their other work, described by the band as “louder, slicker and more ambitious” than anything they’ve done before. The album is available on satnite
duets.bandcamp.com. The digital copy costs $3 and the vinyl LP costs $12. Physical copies of the album will be available at the band’s shows.
The band has embarked on an 18-date tour to celebrate the album’s release. The band will play 9 p.m. Nov. 1 at Ottawa Tavern, 1817 Adams S., with four other acts: Heavy Color, Rollergirl, Pastel Arsenal and Alan Liezerman.
The band has played at Ottawa Tavern twice before and are Guszkowski said they are looking forward to returning to the venue.
Tags: Batman, Beatles, Beyoncé, Boy Scouts, David Bowie, drummer Joe Guszkowski, Electric Manland, Ellen DeGeneres, Elton John, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Buffet, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Milwaukee, Sat. Night Duets, Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, Shrek, Three Wisemen, Two Kids Get New Books, Wheel of Fortune