Beehive are a duo based in Chico, California made up of Jake Sprecher (guitar, vocals, Hammond drum machine) and Bud Amenti (bass). On September 5th they will be releasing their debut album titled Depressed & Distressed. It was recorded live at Butte College to 1/2″ tape on Jake’s TASCAM 38. If you are into early Wire, The Spits, Ed Schrader’s Music Beat, Television Personalities, etc then you will love Beehive. 

For this Under the Influence piece fans are treated to not only Jake’s UTI picks but a track premiere of ’90s Trash’. It’s the third preview track being released and the fourth track off the album.  

Check out the track here and read about what albums have influenced Jake Sprecher immediately below.

Pre-order the album here:

Flipper – ‘Ha Ha Ha’ , ‘Lowrider’ (Sex Bomb Baby)

I’ve been quietly obsessed with this pair of early Flipper songs since I was 18. For as sludgy as they could be, Flipper’s sneering, mid-tempo, meandering side is what’s always hooked me. Both these tracks are totally wild and free, and I hear them the same way I do Alice Coltrane or Albert Ayler; the only difference to me is that Flipper conveyed it through punk. Two things in particular I’d like to point out real quick, both of which we try to carry in spirit with Beehive… First is that Steve DePace was a legitimately solid, in-the-pocket drummer. If you’re dancing to Flipper, you’re really dancing to Steve DePace, and it’s easy to lose sight of how steady he was amid the atonal chaos. Second is simply appreciating how savage and snotty a vocalist Bruce Loose was. Both “Ha Ha Ha” and “Lowrider” are straight trash talk, overflowing with the swagger that makes you believe they really didn’t give a fuck. 

The Spits – IV

For my money, the Spits are the closest living thing to old school Ramones on the planet. I remember IV showing up in the mail when I was working at a now-defunct alt-weekly, and I just couldn’t get enough of it. 10 tracks, 16 minutes, ripping them off one into the other, almost like suite rather than a collection of individual songs. That approach is near and dear to our hearts in Beehive, as we don’t stop the drum machine at any point, pushing through a 23-minute set that always leaves me completely gassed and gasping for air. (Kind of funny I say that while premiering ’90s Trash’, the one song I get to catch my breath on.) Anyway, we had the honor of opening for the Spits at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco this past July, and they take that same gung-ho attitude to the stage even after all these years. It’s really kind of amazing.

Junto Club – Live from the Green Door 

When Terry Malts toured Europe in 2016, we shared a bill in London with a group from Glasgow called Junto Club. To say they blew my mind would be a vast understatement—they flat-out inspired me, and are as much a reason as any that I finally pursued a drum machine-driven project like Beehive. I find lead vocalist David Wilson to be completely hypnotic, and as much as I enjoy their 12” releases, Junto Club’s live show is seriously captivating. This performance at Glasgow’s Green Door Studio captures that energy and style perfectly, and has found a very special place in my heart. I’m not sure whether or not I’ll ever get to see them live again, but they left a permanent mark on my soul either way, and for that I’m very grateful.  

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