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Arts and Entertainment Wednesday, May 23, 2012 10 years ago

This Song in Sarasota: "Teleprompter" by Physical Plant

by: Sara Moone

I know what some of you are thinking. Oh, great. Another amateur writer thinks her music taste is totally the greatest and feels compelled to enlighten the rest of us culturally-starved chumps. I also thought the last thing Sarasotans needed was another “Song of the Week” column. Then I asked the almighty Facebook what it thought, and it turns out you guys actually want this crap. (You also want more band photos, but I am even worse at photography than I am at thought-vomitus, so that’s that.)

There’s one thing I am really, really good at. Okay, two things. The first: I am awesome at listening to music. The second: I am totally awesome at liking music. My musical education at New College forced a lot of noise with the audacity to call itself “music” down my earholes, and I was forced to think about sound, performance and art long and hard enough to become convinced that most anything is worth a close listen. So let’s just call this series my post-graduate study in Music Appreciation.

I am prepared to take on everything Sarasota has to offer, from thrash metal to contemporary classical. And don’t come whining to me if a group from Bradenton or Venice finds its way into my carryings-on. If I can drive to see a band play without keeling over in my air condition-less truck, I consider the tunes fair game.

Now, enough about me--let’s talk about Physical Plant and me. I had the pleasure of attending New College with the majority of the band, save drummer Jay Beard, whose formidable skin-beating belies the fact that he only graduated from high school this year. A couple of them survived my tenure as a music theory Teaching Assistant, so I like to think I taught them everything they know—well, I assisted at any rate. And, in the spirit of full disclosure, I also enjoy the great privilege of jamming regularly with bassist Dave Baker in local Americana project Passerine.

When I first heard “Teleprompter,” composed by guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist Caegan Quimby, it knocked the air out of me. It still compels me to head-bang without the requisite amount of alcohol that it usually takes to elicit such, ahem, effusiveness. I wait for the first crashing entrance of drums, guitar and bass with nerve-quivering anticipation, like a bodysurfer waiting for that perfect wave to break over him. And after the slightly swinging chorus, it’s all a breathless psychedelic ride, guitars wailing, angel choirs howling and Caegan screaming like a heartsick panther until Jake Elrod’s slide-guitar denouement and conclusion raise goosebumps up and down my skin. I live for those moments when a song tickles my brain enough to provoke a corporal response. Best part of all? I think “Teleprompter” is a love song.

Physical Plant will be taking a break this summer as Jay goes off to his own collegiate exploits, which means tomorrow night may be the last time I or any of us get to hear “Teleprompter” live for quite awhile. This prospect saddens me deeply, but fortunately I’ve picked up a copy or two of their stunning self-produced EP, Are They Dangerous? Go see tomorrow night’s show---Growler's Pub at 9 p.m.---if you have a lick of sense.


- Sara Moone is the Managing Editor for This Week in Sarasota. Her fascination with the local music scene was first expressed in a short-lived column titled “Scene-asota,” published in the New College Tangent during the spring of 2010. This fascination evolved into direct engagement when Sara joined local bands Passerine and Villanova Junction in 2011. 

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