Rats With Wings

Rats With Wings

BandRockPop

The Flaming Lips and Wilco are in a horrible car crash, and Ween shows up in an ambulance to clean up the mess. An acoustic guitar, a laptop, great lyrics, infectious hooks– all with a subtle dose of postmodern sarcasm.

Biography

In five years half of all the world’s indie bands will sound like Rats With Wings.
In ten years the market will be completely saturated with Rats With Wings copy bands.
In fifteen years Rats With Wings will be all but forgotten.
In twenty years it will all begin again.

Brendan “Hands and Mouth” Fitzpatrick and David “Professor Fingers” Hurtgen have been writing and performing together for 15 years. The collaboration began with the Rochester-based band Johnny Boomslang in 1991. For 6 years they sloshed through hell until beaten, broken, and penniless, they went their separate ways. Hands and Mouth moved to Chicago to begin anew, and Professor Fingers relocated to Long Island to pursue a master’s degree in music composition. Fitzpatrick would soon join his cousin Peter Fitzpatrick as bassist in the Brooklyn indie sensation Clem Snide, while Hurtgen formed the short-lived but now legendary performance art trio bitchmidget. In 2003 they simultaneously moved to Brooklyn, determined to live the dream. After about a year, talk of getting the band back together began.

When Rats With Wings was formed in the spring of 2005, they vowed to not give up until one of them dropped or could no longer hold their axe. After much experimentation, they arrived at the instrumentation of voice and guitar (Fitzpatrick) and keyboards triggering sounds through a laptop computer (Hurtgen). After performing small gigs as a duo for about a year, often playing to a sequenced drumbeat, they decided to add real drums in the form of Colin Brooks of the Dan Zanes Group and The Stills. Due to these obligations, Brooks was not able to fully commit to the Rats, and long-time friend Joshua “Limbs” Wheeler of Joy Zipper took over the reins in the winter of 2006/2007.

Like all good popular music, their songs begin with great melodies and lyrics, written by Fitzpatrick. Once the basic tune is complete, Professor Fingers uses his laptop “Julia” to evoke everything from orchestral instrumentation to quirky synths and samples – all with a subtle dose of postmodern sarcasm. Though other bands are now using laptops to make up for players they don’t have, Rats uses Julia as an organic, integral part of the music. The drums make it rock. We offer two analogies to describe their sound: The Flaming Lips and Wilco are in a horrible car crash, and Ween shows up in an ambulance to clean up the mess; You’ve been captured by the government and are being subjected to a grueling round of waterboarding by Big Bird in a huge pair of Crocs™. One can hardly know what to expect at a live performance, though Bible verses with James Brown style “hits” aren’t out of the question. Anyone for corporate power point presentations in pigeon suits?

Rats With Wings is currently supporting their self-recorded, mixed and mastered “Tiny Guns EP” featuring the single “Everwise Muskellunge” and a cover of the classic “Hungry Like The Wolf” by Duran Duran. Only the Rats could take an 80’s pop hit and turn it into a masterwork that is one part melancholia, one part obsession, and one part complete ridiculousness. Is that Chuck Mangione playing flugel horn? Maybe. Their singles “Cocaine Vs. Pot and Beer” and “Don’t Melt” are featured in the IFC film “The Baxter” starring fellow Brooklynites Michael Showalter and Michelle Williams. These songs can be heard on the soundtrack that followed, released by Milan Entertainment. Fore more, check out their myspace page at myspace.com/ratswithwings or hear “Tiny Guns” available on iTunes August 24th.

Discography

"Tiny Guns Ep" Street date: August 24, 2007

Set List

The Codes
Cocaine Vs. Pot and Beer
Everwise Muskellunge
Rock Brigade
Hungry Like the Wolf
Safari
The End of The End
War On Drugs
The Teacher
Robot Suicide

Our sets are forty minutes to an hour.