shame w/ Been Stellar

shame w/ Been Stellar

Backroom concert

Must have valid photo ID to verify age (21+) and identity at the door.

Event Door Time: May 22nd, 2023 – 7:00pm
Ticket Price: Advanced: $20 / Day of: $22  – Tickets available at and Bell’s General Store

About the artist:

Their management presented them with a challenge: in just under three weeks, shame would play two shows at The Windmill where they would be expected to debut two sets of entirely new songs. This opportunity meant that the band returned the same ideology which propelled them to these heights in the first place: the love of playing live, on their own terms, fed by their audience. Thus, Food for Worms careened and crashed into life faster than anything they’d created before: a weapons-grade cocktail that captured all the gristle, fragility and carnal physicality that earned shame their merits. It was only right that shame would record the album entirely live for the first time.

The band recorded Food for Worms while playing festivals all over Europe, invigorated by the strength of the reaction their new material was met with. That live energy, what it’s like to witness shame in their element, is captured perfectly on record – like lightning in a bottle. In the past, their music had been almost clinically assembled, with the vocals and the band existing as two distinct layers. But Food for Worms, there has never been such an immediate sense of togetherness – and more than that, it was fun. Everyone chipped in on vocals; they made the unifying choice to sing, rather than the solitude that comes with a shout. Roles were not so fiercely defined, with Steen taking command of the bass guitar for the anthemic “Adderall”, devising a simple progression that bassist Josh Finerty would never dream of, pushing the album into new, unexpected places.

For the first time, the band are not delving inwards, but seeking to capture the world around them. “I don’t think you can be in your own head forever,” says Steen. In many ways, the album is an ode to friendship, and a documentation of the dynamic that only five people who have grown up together – and grown so close, against all odds – can share.

Food for Worms also sees Steen deliver one of his greatest vocal performances which came from learning to lean into the vulnerabilities his lyrics portray, rather than deflecting them. His vocal teacher, Rebecca Phillips, encouraged him to approach it unflinchingly.  It was this new technique that allowed shame to embrace the songs that dealt with a deeply personal subject: fear for a friend’s mental well-being. Steen’s voice paces with sleepless worry, guilt, frustration – and absolute tenderness. Closing track “All the People”, a great musical swell of brotherly love, haunts the mind the lingering words penned by guitarist Sean Coyle-Smith, there is a lightness to the song which captures the spirit of Food for Worms and all the thoughts that expression evokes, all that bittersweetness. And even if you can’t put those feelings into words, shame have found them for you.


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