In this weekly column, RFT Music gets to know local creatives, musicians and their missions. Get a slice of the local scene, complete with a snippet of sound and info about upcoming releases and shows. Stick around to see what St. Louis artists have to say whenever they Fill in in the Blank.
The Funs are Philip Lesicko and Jessee Rose Crane, an inseparable pair that spent their formative years bouncing back between St. Louis and Chicago. They're a couple and a couple of the most down-to-Earth people you'll meet. This Saturday, September 28, they attempt to bridge the gap between their beloved home bases with a rock'n'roll show on wheels, curated to bring together some of their favorite bands in the region.
At a show they closed out earlier this week, the two sit on the sidewalk in front of Blank Space between sets, scratching images of cats and creatures onto the sidewalk with pastel chalk, a testament to how they're always daydreaming and always creating.
When they're not playing shows in Chicago and St. Louis or touring all over the country, Lesicko and Crane spend time rehabbing a 140-year-old family house in New Douglas, Illinois (it's by the Pink Elephant Antique Mall, they say. You can't miss it). In doing so, they're working towards a life-long dream of building up an artist residency and recording studio to house touring musicians. And that's not all - Lesicko also started his own label in 2009, Manic Static. He's released an impressive roster of recordings since, including the Funs' debut self-titled album this past spring.
The Funs were named somewhat ironically. During a turning point in their lives, living in and running a DIY show space in south city, the pair decided to channel frustrations into something positive. The resulting racket they conjured over time blasts its way out through a tower of amps, a fuzzy, buzzy wall disjointed by sharp drumming. The two rotate roles between drums and guitar, both crooning through a reverb-drenched haze, floating flawed and fraught with inescapable feelings through outer space. It's those rough edges that make the Funs' music irresistable and at it's base level, unmistakably human.
For those unsure how to translate this description, it might help to mention a couple of their favorite bands: the Breeders and Sic Alps. We urge you to check 'em out live to get to know them. In the meantime, listen to their album via Bandcamp below and look forward to their next release, already recorded and awaiting a home.
We asked Philip and Jessee to fill in the blanks ahead of their epic skating rink show this weekend. See what they had to say on the next page.