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Check in to the Hotel St. George



    San Diego’s Hotel St. George are set to take the stage at the Casbah next Tuesday.

    In anticipation of the show, lead singer Matt Binder and guitarist Eric Visnyak listed a few of their influences for me:

    1. Child Ballads's Cheekbone Hollow: The music has a country-era Rolling Stones vibe to it, but it’s also got a psychedelic quality to it. Stewart Lupton's lyrics serve as a window into a world where he makes collages naked on his bedroom floor and sings nostalgically about his hanging out with his cousins in his youth. Each line is delivered with a Lou Reed-meets-Jeff Tweedy quality that I not only admire but also desperately wish were my own. (Binder)

    2. The Octagon's Arm Brain Heart and Liver: It’s pretty basic, post-punk stuff with nods to Pavement, Guided By Voices and Dinosaur Jr., but each song creates its own special place in the world that I really dig. I actually made a conscious effort to replicate some of their style on our latest record, but I think I failed pretty miserably at it. (Binder)

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    3. The Soft Pack's The Soft Pack: A couple of years ago, I went to the Kensington Club and randomly stumbled upon the Soft Pack [then called the Muslims] as they played their second show ever. In my mind, these guys were totally out of everybody else’s league. There was just something about the songs and [Matt Lamkin’s] vocal delivery that set them apart from everything else that I was hearing. (Binder)

    4. Jens Lekman's Night Falls Over Kortedala: This Swedish indie pop star plucks and sings amazing songs that would make even Morrissey blush. Songs themed around uncomfortable dinners, or delivering lines like, “Did you take Tram No. 7 to heaven?/Did you eat your banana from 7-Eleven?” turn Jens into a best friend pulling you aside to tell you his experiences, but with a melodic and well-orchestrated band setting the mood of the discussion. (Visnyak)

    5. The Horrors' Primary Colours: With some production assistance from Portishead, the Horrors gave birth to Primary Colours last year. I must have played this record hundreds of times, and it never loses it punch. Whether it was my third listen (on a Friday night with my confused out-of-town guests staring at me while I drunkenly danced to the closing track, “Sea with a Sea,” while swinging a glass of beer in one hand and playing air synthesizer with my other hand), or the latest listen (following a long 9-to-5er with the blaring guitars on “New Ice Age” suddenly breaking my zombie work coma), the Horrors provide ample enjoyable listens. (Visnyak)

    T. Loper is a writer and photographer for the San Diego music blog Owl and Bear.