Chalk Outline Party

Chalk Outline Party


"If only everyone's idea of straight-ahead rock'n'roll were more like Chalk Outline Party's: the dangerous swampland where rock's beautiful failures ('60s garage, post-punk, dark '80s new wave) are buried next to its lionized beauties (Bowie, Bryan Ferry)." Justin Hopper, CITY PAPER


"a band on the brink of something rare -- a tight, smart urbane sound, darkly sardonic without sounding defeated by life quite yet. It's a cunning combination of Joy Division and The Cure's early existential gloom-pop, swathed in decadent '70s glam. At the moment, a number of Pittsburgh bands are looking back to Roxy Music and David Bowie to find their way forward, but Chalk Outline Party does it without self-consciously sliding into the "retro" ditch that's claimed so many lesser bands."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

With the new record in hand, radio play, growing record label interest, and a busy schedule of festivals and showcases, Chalk Outline Party is quickly establishing itself as one of the top groups emerging from Pittsburgh's volatile underground scene, the city recently named #1 in Esquire Magazine’s “Cities That Rock” list. Clearly this is a band to watch, and it’s only the beginning of the beginning.

Last summer, their single "Cobra Youth House" reached #9 on the national specialty radio charts -- the only unsigned band on the list. They also performed at festivals including the Motor City Music Conference and Chicago's MOBfest.

The group's sound has been compared to a wide range of groundbreaking artists, including Afghan Whigs, Pete Murphy, Bowie, Nick Cave, Television, Bauhaus, Psychedelic Furs, Urge Overkill, Roxy Music, as well as more contemporary acts.

Chalk Outline Party is the brainchild of vocalist Aaron Jentzen and guitarist Brian Sproul, who first met at the unlikely crossroads of Grove City College in 1999. Shiny Penny Things—the group’s debut EP released in early 2003— showcased the group’s early material and Jentzen’s Nick Cave-influenced vocal style. Local press in Pittsburgh seized upon the group’s strong songwriting and bizarre lyrics. Copies of Shiny Penny Things made their way as far west as California and as far east as Iraq, and eventually into the hands of Henry Rollins, spoken word performer and vocalist for Black Flag and Rollins band, who gave the record a thumbs-up.

Chalk Outline Party has refined their live set with regional touring, playing cities like Detroit, Ann Arbor, Cleveland, Chicago, and Brooklyn, as well as building a strong following in Pittsburgh. After a couple of lineup changes in the rhythm section, the group has crystallized with the addition of drummer extrordinaire Jeremy Papay, who brings a Stewart Copeland-style virtuosity to Chalk Outline Party's rhythm section.

Chalk Outline Party has played with, among others:

Cave In (RCA/Hydra Head), Action Action (Victory), Appleseed Cast, Cherry Monroe (Rust), The Push Stars, The High Strung (TeePee), Lovedrug (Militia Group), The Everyothers (Hautlab), The Izzys (Kanine), Chin-Up Chin-Up (Flameshovel), Eric James (Pure Tone), Crome Yellow Co. (Northern Light), Mondo Topless (Get Hip), Monarch (Northern), Wynkataug Monks (Lovely), Olympus Mons (Lovely).

Legal representation:
Christopher S. Bradstreet, Esq.

Radio promotion: Liz Koch
Notorious Radio

Band & Booking contact: Aaron Jentzen
P.O. Box 3117
Pittsburgh, PA 15230

All songs published by Inferential Kid / Custerdome Music, BMI.


Cobra Youth House

Written By: Aaron Jentzen

Glass splinter lines from your friends
Burned out by summer's end (bottle it and sell it, why don'tcha)
I-80's just another thread
String of loops and dead ends (traced on your skin)
Gravity maps, spheres of influence
Another day another dive
Dragged by the pull of the old neighborhood
An Abe's Coney Island of the mind

Come on dirty girls, come on needle boys
Pack up your laundry and pick up your toys
The locust descends tonight
On the Cobra Youth House

Sweating the buildings, you walk like a pistol
Past the strip club and the hardware store
Out on a weekend, a lifer for a rerun
The Year of the Locust, Part One
Cinderblocks and broken bottles, cigarette burns and spit-shined shoes
The kids are alright, but the band is better
Crashing the party with a ROCK'N'ROLL PLAN
Leaving with your teeth in your hand

Psychic UK

Written By: Music: Brian Sproul/Lyrics Aaron Jentzen


The longest day
Five years hiding behind my door
I wanna tell
The brain I made up myself
I'd love to go, but I know
They're waiting to kill me
I'd love to see
But that's when we run away...

And when you're running beside me,
I'm gonna take you on a frequency dip
Seeking asylum for the mistaken
We go to Psychic UK

The longest day
Eighteen hours on the train
I wanna tell
The brain I made up myself
I'd love to go, to a place
Outside of Hammersmith
I'd love to see
the bodies on the beach...

And when you're running beside me,
I'm gonna take you on a frequency dip
Seeking asylum for the mistaken
We go to Psychic UK

I want to live...


"Psychic U.K." single, out now!
"A Plan Lost in Dreams" 2005
"New Tracks" EP 2004
"Shiny Penny Things" 2003

Set List

Typical sets are 30-60 minutes, one set, although other arrangements can be made. The multimedia show is 35 minutes long, featuring the film "Plans Lost in Dream" by Jessica Fenlon.

Cobra Youth House
Psychic UK
Metal Leg-Up
The Gun in Everyone
Switch On Your Marquee Dogs
All-Night Laundromat Heart
Magnetic West

Occasional covers include:
China Girl (Bowie/Pop)
Poison Heart (Ramones)
Mad World (Tears for Fears)
Killing Moon (Echo and the Bunnymen)
The Policy of Truth (Depeche Mode)
Under the Milky Way (The Church)
Once in a Lifetime (Talking Heads)She Sells Sanctuary (The Cult)