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​Don’t Sleep on Spite Nap

Music | December 17th, 2020

When we were growing up we often found ways to rebel against our parents, some more nonsensical than others. Not all of us decided to use those methods as inspiration for the name of a band. Bismarck-based band Spite Nap decided to jump on that opportunity, setting the irreverent tone for the band.

“It all kind of started as a joke,” said Spite Nap’s drummer Connor Wentz, who I recently had the opportunity to interview. “We were all messing around in Matt’s basement. We all wanted to mess around, be loud.” Spite Nap is composed of four members: the aforementioned Wentz, vocalist Matt Steffes, guitarist Zach Mulholland, and bassist Jesse White. Mulholland, Wentz, and White had previously been in a band called Bummer together, and Spite Nap had its genesis in 2017 when the trio started hanging out with Mulholland, who performed in his own fair share of Bismarck-area bands.

The band’s unique name came from an ongoing list, pages long, of potential band names on his phone. “Matt joked, ‘You know when your parents are angry at you and so you go to your room and sleep instead?’” said, Wentz, and they knew they had a name for their new musical project.

The band has performed in both Bismarck and Minot. They had plans to tour in other locations around North Dakota this year in order to promote their first album, “The Head Stays Alive for Ten Seconds,” but like many other bands’ plans, these got derailed by the pandemic. “We recorded ‘The Head Stays Alive’ over a year ago and had been waiting to put it out, to tour and sell merch, but... COVID,” said Wentz. “We put the album out in October, you can find it on Spotify.”

The album title, like the name of the band, was inspired by another eccentric rumination by Mulholland: “Did you know that the head stays alive for ten seconds after it gets cut off?” The band technically recorded the album twice, once with a lo-fi recording setup and one with a more hi-def setup, which was the one that they decided to utilize for the release.

When asked how he would classify the music of the band, Wentz said, “We’re loud but not necessarily aggressive. Loud and fun. Mostly like post-hardcore, post-punk, but we get riffy and weird.” Influences he cited were the bands Fear Before the March of Flames/The Fear Before, These Arms are Snakes, and Clues for the “weird stuff.”

Regarding future plans for the band, Wentz said, “Luckily we all work in landscaping, which means we don’t do a lot in the winter, so we can focus on writing and recording. If this [the pandemic] blows over by next winter, we’re planning on stuff like touring.” In the meantime, he had this to say to fellow musicians weathering out COVID-19. “Just keep holding tight, hunker down, use it as a chance to write and listen to different stuff so when you come back you can really rip it up.”

Check out the band on:

https://spitenap.bandcamp.com/

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