Emo Therapy

Famous people from South Dakota: Tom Brokaw. Mamie Van-Doren. Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull. The rock-head presidents at Mount Rushmore.

Almost-famous people from South Dakota: Nick Thomas and The Spill Canvas. The band started life as Thomas' alt-folk solo act, which fell somewhere between James Blunt and a Greenwich Village street singer screeching about the Apocalypse with spittle dribbling down his chin. Thankfully, Thomas cut the sap crap, rounded up some not-so-likeminded musicians -- including fab guitarist Dan Ludeman and wrecking-crew drummer Joe Beck -- and went electric. Voilà! A sound was born.

We can't say that The Spill Canvas is unique -- it is an alt/rock act, after all -- but, oh, the promise! Thomas has successfully channeled his emo tendencies into searing songs of pain ("All Hail the Heartbreaker"; "Hush Hush," which features the great line "Your heart is charcoal/Smokin' black"), and Canvas' slammin' mash of new-millennial indie and '70s-style harmonics won the band a slot on last year's Warped Tour. They still haven't written that one great song, but it's in 'em. You'll see.

Mon., Oct. 8, 6 p.m., 2007
KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Clay McNear
Contact: Clay McNear