Cellar Dwellers: Widowspeak rises and falls with melancholy musings

Brooklyn grunge band was featured on American Horror Story, Fuse TV’s 30 must-see artists


VISALIA – Some bands linger in obscurity for years before they signed to a record deal. Others hit the scene hot and fizzle out before they can find an identity that can withstand the ever changing musical landscape. Widowspeak is neither.

The indie rock band was formed by Tacoma, Wash. natives Molly Hamilton and Michael Stasiak in Brooklyn in 2010. Shortly thereafter, the life-long friends met with guitarist Robert Earl Thomas and released their debut, self-titled album Widowspeak in August 2011. One of the album’s singles, “Harsh Realm,” was featured in an episode of American Horror Story and they quickly began touring extensively with the addition of bassist Pamel Garavano-Coolbaugh.

The instant fame was short lived and so was the band’s current roster. After their first tour, the band’s co-founder Stasiak and its newest member Garavano-Coolbaugh left the band. Undaunted, Hamilton and Thomas began work on their second full length album “Almanac” in early 2012. The album was released in January 2013 and just three months later helped Widowspeak crack Fuse TV’s 30 must-see artists.

The band released its latest album, “Expect the Best,” on Aug. 25. Under the Captured Tracks label, Widowspeak continues its grunge combination of wispy melancholy lyrics with slow burning guitar. Next week, locals will have a rare opportunity to see a band that has made it, broken up, remade themselves and is again catching people’s attention all in the span of a seven-year career.

Widowspeak will perform at the Cellar Door from 9-11:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 27. The Cellar Door is located at 101 W. Main St. in Visalia. Tickets for the 21 and over show are $10 and are available at ticketweb.com. To hear more from the band visit widowspeak.bandcamp.com.

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