Rock Shock: Tulsa mourns the loss of two of our better bands...
The Urban Tulsa Weekly
June 2, 2005

Wow! In case you haven’t heard yet, Tulsa’s music scene has taken a hard hit with a right hook-sucker punch combination. That’s right, we’ve lost not one, but two of our stronger bands within the last few weeks. Now I know things like this are inevitable and all things have a season – even our favorite rock bands. That still doesn’t change the fact that we’re left stunned and grieving at the loss, especially when it’s someone who has made a sizable impact on the local music scene. Personally, as much as I’m shocked at the loss, my mind is spinning, trying to figure out who will complete the “dead pool”. You know what I’m talking about – celebrities always die in threes, in close succession. With two of our local heroes folding in such a short period, it would only seem to fit the same pattern to lose another and complete the hat-trick.

First we bid adieu to Glen Strain. Their show at Boston’s on Saturday night, May 14 with Wreckless Process and Fair to Midland marked the end of the line for “The Strain Train”. Sometimes you can see band dissolutions coming and other times there are no signs. This one came out of left field, though. The band has been fairly quiet on the live front recently, reportedly working on a new CD that many (including myself) were looking forward to. Whether that material will ever see the light of day, either via a “posthumous” release or under the guise of a new project in the future, is yet to be seen. You can count this one as a hard shot to the jaw for Tulsa’s hard-rock scene. The guys in Strain are young but have serious chops and had a solid following. No word yet as to what’s next for these guys, but I can’t imagine that we won’t see the band members re-appear in other projects later this summer. The question will be: can they come back with anything as strong as The Strain?

If you weren’t at Boston’s for that show, then I hope you at least made it out to Mayfest this past Saturday night to catch TRB’s final gig. Yes, you read that correctly. TRB has been folded away and put to rest. If Glen Strain came out of left field, the TRB break up came out of nowhere, like bricks falling from the sky. TRB’s self-titled disc was easily one of the best local CD’s to come out of Tulsa last year. With the amount of time the band put into recording and production, I’m still having a hard time believing that they’ve hung it up. The band had stepped up it’s gigging schedule in past couple of months, having played Boston’s, The Venue and 1974 recently, even doing a show in Joplin within the last month or so. All indications from the local buzz and the band’s website indicate that a tentative June date at Boston’s was nixed and Mayfest was effectively the band’s farewell.

What precipitated the band’s unraveling is up for speculation, for the band has been fairly tight-lipped about the whole thing. Perhaps it’s frustration setting in as the band released a stellar disc last November, even garnering daytime spins on local radio, and yet Tulsa audiences, by and large, just didn’t seem to catch on. At least wrapping it up at Mayfest let the band say goodbye in front of large hometown crowd. Of course artists are always prone to change their minds, so perhaps after a little rest we’ll see them back in action, but at the moment that seems like a stretch. As for now, the great white hope for seeing Tulsa explode on the modern rock scene has given up the ghost.

Rumor has it that Clovis may be in the rocks as well, with Greg Hosterman working on a new project with Paul Christiano and Brad Mitcho. Of course, at this point, all is speculative. Hopefully my “dead pool” theories are wrong and we’ve already sustained our losses for the summer. For now, however, let’s hang out heads in a moment of silence for the loss of a couple of Tulsa’s heaviest hitters.

by G.K. Hizer

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