Word of mouth is the true test of any band’s worth. Critics and bloggers can go on about composition, thematic elements, and hidden meanings until they’re blue in the face, but at the end of the day, it’s the people around you who possess the ability to ultimately praise a musician or bury them.
It can be no coincidence, then, that Viva Voce chose the name that they did. The phrase is Latin for “word of mouth,” and just about anybody who has heard their steamy, electrifying albums can confidently attest to the band’s greatness.
Viva Voce were formed in 1998 in Muscle Shoals, AL by Kevin Robinson and Anita Robinson. The married couple relocated first to Nashville, TN and then to Portland, OR where they currently reside. Along the way, they released a series of captivating albums marked by sultry melodies and atmospheric instrumentals. By the time they released their third record, 2004’s scorching The Heat Can Melt Your Brian, Viva Voce were on a serious roll.
2006’s Get Yr Blood Sucked Out pulled off the impressive feat of improving upon its predecessors, thanks to a newfound emphasis on acoustic guitar that simultaneously stripped down the band’s sound and expanded it. Their most recent album, 2009’s Rose City, was a homecoming for the group, with the Robinsons returning to the formula of epic guitar work and simmering sonics that they’d previously perfected.
You can sample that winning formula for yourself on March 10, when Viva Voce open for Damien Jurado at The Loft at UCSD. Viva Voce will be giving fans a sneak preview of songs from their upcoming Vanguard Records debut, The Future Will Destroy You, set for release on June 21. If you can’t wait for a taste, you can download the new single, “Analog Woodland Song,” from Vanguard’s website.
Tickets for the Belly Up show can be purchased here, so get on it. Then again, don’t listen to me — ask a friend or neighbor for the skinny. But chances are they’ll tell you the same thing.
Viva Voce tour dates
3/4/2011 Portland, OR – Doug Fir Lounge
3/5/2011 Seattle, WA – The Crocodile
3/7/2011 Bend, OR – Tower Theatre
3/9/2011 San Francisco, CA -Bottom of the Hill
3/10/2011 San Diego, CA – The Loft
3/12/2011 Norman, OK – Opolis
3/13/2011 Denton, TX – Dan’s Silverleaf
3/14/2011 Little Rock, AR -Whitewater Tavern
3/16/2011 Houston, TX – The Mink Backroom
3/21/2011 Phoenix, AZ – Sail Inn
3/22/2011 Los Angeles, CA – The Satellite
3/23/2011 Santa Cruz, CA – Crepe Place