Shoegaze band The Sex Geckos have become a staple group in the Saskatchewan music scene and are not planning on slowing down any time soon. They are incredibly loud, have a sick-ass name, and make some awesome music.
Classifying themselves as guitar-pop, the duo comprised of Jake Johnson and Owen Bailey, are experimenting with how to ‘be a 2-piece shoegaze band while still destroying shit.’They have catchy guitar riffs paired with explosive drums, which impressively interlock during their music, making them quite the power duo.
Their debut album released in 2019, The Static Tapes, sets a permanent fire to your soul and creates a serious desire to experience them live. Full of energy, it is evident that they are both incredibly talented and put their hearts into their music. Static Tapes is a great album and definitely set The Sex Geckos off running.
I love their upbeat and lyric-filled song “Sheep People”, which is the second track on the album. It is incredibly infectious, so much so that I can’t help dancing along whenever I hear it. Another track that is seriously awesome is one of their more popular songs, “Impala”. It’s mostly instrumental, with the occasional ‘Woo!’ or ‘Ooh‘s thrown in, and full of groove. Catchy guitar riff galore and lots of high hat on drums with this one!
I asked them about inspiration from their local music scene, but despite being quite involved, they don’t think it has influenced their sound very much. Expanding the term ‘local’, they did say they have been inspired by numerous Canadian bands. These include ‘Hooded Fang (Toronto), Blessed (Abbotsford), and Dopey’s Robe (formerly Vancouver, presently Montreal).’
When I asked them where they got their name from, Bailey responded by saying: ‘Internet band name generator, forget which one. It was between that and “The Slick Drips” and we were called “White Line Fever” for a couple weeks before we realized how stupid it was. Actually, I would like to say we realized how stupid it was, but really it was because someone else already took the name. I’m glad they did.’ I think this is the best response I could have received. I absolutely love it.
The Sex Geckos have had the opportunity to play at various festivals in Canada, which have included many different variations of the band. The duo has added members at times, and also had to perform as a solo act once. Talking about festivals, the band shared a memorable experience from Tubby Dog, a hot dog joint they played at in Calgary, Alberta:
‘At Tubby Dog, Jake and I each destroyed a PB&J+Captain Crunch hot dog (forget the name), and played right after the previous band’s drummer broke the kit’s bass drum head. Jay Allen (great guy from CFCR/Radiation Flowers) said they could get another drum kit over, but we didn’t wanna wait to play, because we didn’t want people to start leaving.
First the sound guy tried taping the skin, and I broke through it within half a song. Then, one of the members of the fucking fantastic Dopey’s Robe from Vancouver (forget which one, haha) said if I flipped the floor tom on its side and mic’d it, it would totally work. And it did! The only issue was that it kept sliding. So, our good friend Dana Durell sat on it for the rest of the show. Then we watched The Garrys, ate more hot dogs, smoked a joint and tried to sneak into the Oblivions show.’
Johnson and Bailey are somewhat young in age, but not in experience. I was interested to see if they had come across any problems concerning their age, but they said they have not had too much trouble. Bailey commented, saying: ‘Just the occasional “you guys are great…FOR YOUR AGE”, which gives me a strong urge to blast a drumstick in their eye socket.’
Throughout these months without live performances, The Sex Geckos have still been able to share their music. They released a cover song of another Saskatchewan band through a compilation made by their local community radio, as well as a ‘show’ they did with with Vator Sessions, a project that has been recording video and audio for bands in their grain elevator studio, and they have been writing in preparation of their new EP. The release date of the new music has not been announced yet, but they are entering the recording studio soon!
This is a band that has been making way over the past few years in Saskatchewan, and is starting to get some buzz around Canada. I would not be surprised if they blow up in the near future. Their catchy sound mixed with their fearless experimentation will get them places for sure. I’d watch out for The Sex Geckos, and definitely do not pass up the chance to see them live.
The Sex Geckos are…
Jake Johnson – guitar/vocals
Owen Bailey – drums/vocals