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Andre and the Giants prepares to split after graduation

After releasing its second album, Andre and the Giants is planning one last tour.

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Andre and the Giants guitarist Nick Friedman warms up before a show April 16 at Eastside Tavern. The show celebrated the release of the band's new album, Giants Inspired by Giants.

Tate Chitwood/Staff Photographer

April 26, 2011

After two years, two albums and giant local success, Andre and the Giants is preparing to split up.

“It’s sad, because it’s a lot of fun playing with these guys and having fun and playing shows,” vocalist and bassist Rob Bratney said. “We have our own kind of persona. We have kind of an identity.”

Bratney and guitarist Nick Friedman will graduate from MU in May. Drummer Andrew Fialka graduated last year. Fialka and Bratney have plans to attend graduate school in the fall.

The band released its second album, Giants Inspired by Giants on April 16 at Eastside Tavern.

“(This album) was the one I was the most proud about and put the most work into, and it’s the biggest project we tackled,” Fialka said. “To get to share it in a setting like that where the place was sold out was such a great reward.”

The night was titled, “A Very Giant CD Release Show,” and between 150 and 200 people showed up to hear the band play almost all the songs off its new album as well as several covers.

The band’s songs address a myriad of topics including consumerism, individuality and anger and are inspired by things like Black Friday, the TLC show “What Not to Wear” and Facebook arguments.

“I guess the general theme is that I want to have something to say,” Bratney said. “I want to find something that is wrong and write a song about it.”

Friedman says the band’s influences are The Black Keys and the White Stripes.

“I think our stuff is mostly about the music,” Friedman said. “Not to detract from the lyrics, but I think the music is our strongest point. So I think that people who appreciate musicianship like it.”

Friedman characterizes the band’s sound as a mix of garage, punk and blues.

“The lines between genres have been crossing for awhile now, and they’re a good example of a band that can take a couple of different styles and put it together to make something fairly unique,” Wil Reeves, Centro Cellar Studio Recording Engineer, said.

The band has been together since the spring of 2009, when they began playing live behind local rapper, Ray ‘Steady P’ Pierce. Bratney met Pierce when he was covering him for a journalism assignment. Eventually, Piece encouraged the guys to do their own thing.

“I’m like the big brother,” Pierce said. “Nothing more, nothing less.”

The band played with Pierce Wednesday at Mojo’s, and is planning a two-week summer tour before its split.

“It’s fitting to try to do as much as we can before we go,” Fialka said. “I hope that we can play the best we can no matter what city, what crowd and no matter what happens to us on the road.”

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