As much as Odd Pets’ success in the past year is attributable to their undeniable talent as songwriters and performers, I tend to believe it also stands as a testament to the supportive and inclusive atmosphere of our little Des Moines music scene.
When Des Moines native, Lisa Burner, and long-time resident, Andy Buch, first started playing together as Odd Pets they were mostly just foolin’ around, playing some acoustic stuff one month, some noise stuff the next, and it wasn’t until Andy brought an electric guitar and some drums over that things really clicked and the punk-tinged, pop-forward Odd Pets we know today came together.
The real breakthrough came when they started playing around at the local venues. “It’s all been so amazing,” says Burner. “Odd Pets could not have warmed me up to the stage any better. It’s always so much fun playing and goofing off and meeting new people and meeting new fans.”
That outpouring of support and mutual admiration makes an Odd Pets show somewhat of an emotionally ambiguous prospect. On the one hand, you can’t help but dance or sway along to killer songs like “Stay Behind” or “Blackout” with lines like “My heart is a hole” and “I’m warmest alone.” On the other hand, you will invariably find yourself surrounded by some of the nicest, most decent neighbors you’ll ever meet who are also dancing or swaying along to these killer songs.
You could trip yourself up on those inherent contradictions and go home befuddled and confused. Or you could embrace it, give yourself over to the complexity of the modern world, and find yourself warmly alone, together.
By Casey Erixon of DSM Shows
To learn more about Odd Pets, check out their Facebook page.
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GDP is organized by the nonprofit the Greater Des Moines Music Coalition (DMMC). Gross Domestic Product 2016 is made possible with the support of Traveler Beer Company, Tallgrass Brewing Company, Greater Des Moines Partnership, Bravo Greater Des Moines, Guitar Center, Hy-Vee, The Blazing Saddle, Saturday Mfg., VolunteerLocal, Wooly’s, DSM Shows, and KFMG 98.9 FM.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is an all Iowa music festival held every spring, featuring musical artists from Greater Des Moines and the rest of Iowa. The 11th annual Gross Domestic Product will take place on May 28th, 2016 at venues around the East Village in Des Moines, Iowa! See the full line-up and details here. Gross Domestic Product highlights some of the original songwriters, performers, and recording artists in our community who make Iowa proud! GDP focuses primarily on young, new artists, those who are taking their first steps into creative self-expression through music and doing so in a positive, collaborative way. Each year we highlight a selection of new artists that our community has to offer, along with a few established groups that have had success building careers while living and working in the state we call home.
Established in spring 2006, GDP has featured over 100 musical acts, including House of Large Sizes, The Envy Corps, The Poison Control Center, Christopher the Conquered, Mumford’s, Facecage, and many more.