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Royal Teeth set to take a bite out of Columbus in upcoming show

Courtesy of Royal Teeth

After being signed less than a year ago, through a whirlwind of shows across the country in a matter of months, Royal Teeth is ready to drum up some excitement in its second stop in Columbus.

The six-piece band is scheduled to perform music from its EP “Act Naturally” Tuesday at The Basement with Animal Kingdom. Doors open at 7 p.m.

Hailing from New Orleans, the band is made up of Joshua Wells on bass, Gary Larsen with vocals and guitar, Nora Patterson on vocals, Josh Hefner on percussion, Stevie Billeaud on guitar and Andrew Poe with vocals, keyboard, percussion and programming.

Frontman Larsen said Royal Teeth has been compared to everything from ’80s pop bands to Coldplay, but the band gets its inspiration from many sources.

“We try not to be very specific with what we’re influenced by because there is so much great music out there,” Larsen said.

Larsen also said he comes up with his ideas using only an acoustic guitar, focusing on writing a simple, good pop song. He said he draws inspiration from old pop music, anything from Motown to current music, and tries to get the bare essentials, which can later be turned into a Royal Teeth song.

But once the band hits the stage, things are far from simple.

“With a live show, we try to stand out as much as we can. For fans who are new to us, we’re trying to make a name for ourselves and grab people’s attention,” Larsen said.

To stand out, Larsen said the band throws confetti, goes into the crowd and uses a lot of drums, with as many as four band members drumming at once.

Larsen said the band’s name started as a joke, but its members became stuck on Royal Teeth and decided to keep it.

“I wish we had a crazy reason as to why the name exists,” Larsen said. “Our main goal was to not have anything too serious, because we don’t want to take ourselves too seriously.”

For the band, its name doesn’t really have a meaning behind it, Larsen said, but that hasn’t stopped fans from trying to give it one.

“It’s funny to hear what people think it means,” he said. “Some people thought we were making a reference to English people’s teeth,” he said with a laugh.

Royal Teeth got its start after a show it performed on Halloween last year in its founding city of New Orleans, where the crowd included CEO and founder of Dangerbird Records, Jeff Castelaz, who would later sign the band.

Castelaz, whose wife is from New Orleans, said in a press release that he had looked for years for a New Orleans band to sign to his record label. Castelaz said that after seeing Royal Teeth perform, he “knew they were the band that would allow (Dangerbird) to put (its) stamp on the city’s musical lineage.”

Royal Teeth has since been touring nationally. It recently made a stop in Columbus at Lifestyle Communities Pavilion June 15.

Larsen said it is hard to remember all of the places the band has been and cities its seen in its hectic few months of touring, but he “couldn’t ask for a better reason for forgetting what day it is or forgetting where (he’s) been than (performing) every night.”

Despite the difficulty of keeping track of its shows, Larsen said the band’s concert at the LC was memorable.

“It was actually one of my favorite shows of the whole tour,” he said. “There were so many people there … and it was definitely a great crowd for us to open up to.”

Jaylan Jones, a third-year in civil engineering, won tickets through a ticket giveaway to see the show at the LC.

He said even without knowing much about the show’s headliner, Fitz and the Tantrums, or Royal Teeth, “My concert experience was awesome.”

Jones said he wasn’t expecting much out of the show because he was unfamiliar with the acts, but once Royal Teeth took the stage “the atmosphere changed.”

“They came out with a ton of energy that was really refreshing,” Jones said. “The biggest thing that stands out to me about the show was when Gary came down from the stage and into the pit with his drum for the last song and started jamming out on it. That was really awesome.”

Having been impressed with Royal Teeth’s performance, Jones said he’d definitely recommend seeing the band live.

Tickets to the concert are $10 in advance and $12 the day of the show.

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