Stay up to date on D.C. with our free newsletters
Standout Track: No. 4, “Beautiful Dead to Be,” which uses a jangling, Silver Jews–style guitar riff to set the scene for vocalist Andy Fox’s stream-of-consciousness lyrics. “Is there a lawyer that could make my voice better?” sings Fox, surely hoping that session engineer Michael Kentoff—the attorney-cum-recording engineer who recorded the song—would do just that.
Musical Motivation: Bassman’s holiday. The core of the Cut Ups is Fox and Scott Griset, and if those names sound vaguely familiar, it may be because both of them also play in local band the Foreign Press. Fox, a 38-year-old Mt. Pleasant resident, says that the side-project evolved out of Foreign Press bassist Scott Griset’s desire to trade instruments. “Scott didn’t know how to play guitar,” he says. “This was opportunity for him to play guitar, and as he’s progressed our songs have progressed.” Not that the band’s standards are particularly lofty. “We don’t really worry about song structure too much. It’s very ramshackle,” says Fox. “We don’t worry about needing a bridge.”
Let’s Play Two: As much as he enjoys being in two slacker-rock bands, Fox is appropriately noncommittal about the prospect of a Foreign Press/Cut Ups double bill. “Uh, sure, why not,” he says. “I guess if the right thing came around and I felt like standing in front of two different bands in a row.” But given that most of Fox’s friends have contributed to the Cut Ups, some sort of stream-crossing is inevitable. “In so many ways it’s so incestuous it’s hard not to have a double bill,” Fox says.