Photo Courtesy Beth Parks
By: Mariah Cowsert
Artist: The Cardboard Swords
Genre: Punk Rock/Indie Rock
Comparisons: The Front Bottoms, Sorority Noise, Modern Baseball
Popular Tracks: “Brian’s Song”, “Flannel”, and “(S)He Said”
I spent a Thursday night in a house venue packed wall-to-wall with people while the band poured their hearts out and the crowd sang along to each verse with pride, their energy was tangible. The Cardboard Swords are a Grand Rapids based band that has played alongside acts such as The Front Bottoms, Born Ruffians,Twin Peaks, and Title Fight.
With a new four-piece lineup consisting of: Luke Nowland on guitar, Jeremy Dye on guitar, Sam Padalino on drums, and Tyler DeCoeur on guitar and lead vocals, their new music differs from their previous EP Remnants as they changed their sound from a more pop based rock to rock and roll. Tyler DeCouer, guitarist and lead vocalist, says that they “started as a 3 piece band that was much more bouncy and poppy” and they have “gone through a few member changes and added a guitarist, which has given us a lot more of a rock n’ roll vibe”.
With the new additions to the band and a full album under their belt, DeCouer is confident in their growth and rightfully so as they continue to expand and build their fanbase. Decouer shares that, “writing songs is a much more extended and involved process which includes everyone” in 2015, they released their full length self-titled album, made an official music video for “Brian’s Song” that waxes nostalgia, and have been featured in The Revue, Substream Music Magazine, and Absolute Punk.
During their recording process, DeCouer says shares that his favorite part was the “3.5 days we spent in Philadelphia tracking the album while on tour with our good buds Moses (Mt. Pleasant, MI indie rock band)” and that “recording a full length album was grueling and a real test on us as musicians”. The Cardboard Swords recorded their album through Count Your Lucky Stars Records in Fenton, Michigan which has produced and mixed albums for bands such as Empire! Empire!, Dowsing, and Sinai Vessel. DeCouer says “the experience really changed my perceptions about being in a studio and what recording is”.
You can experience the electricity of The Cardboard Swords by attending one of their shows which can be found on their website or Facebook page. The Cardboard Swords is available on Spotify, Bandcamp, or by purchasing a physical copy or ordering an exclusive vinyl version of the album through the Count Your Lucky Stars website.