Salad Boys at Saturn will be best item at the bar


Salad Boys hails from New Zealand. The indie band will play at the Saturn Bar on Oct. 9.

Ben Shooter, Associate Arcade Editor

On Friday, audiences at the Saturn Bar will be treated to the sounds of the Salad Boys, a band from New Zealand currently touring in the United States to promote its new record “Metalmania.” This will be the band’s first time playing in New Orleans.

The Salad Boys, made up of guitarist and vocalist Joe Sampson, bassist Ben Odering and drummer Jim Nothing, started out developing their pop hooks and jangling guitar arpeggios in the local New Zealand scene, which, much like the local New Orleans scene, is relatively tight-knit.  

“It’s just cool bands, going to the islands and playing on the weekends and it’s pretty small, so everyone kind of knows each other.  We all play in each other’s bands,” Nothing said.

For the Salad Boys, the United States tour is one of several opportunities that opened up to the band after the release of its album. The band’s music gained the attention of Trouble in Mind Records, and the label proceeded to release “Metalmania” in the United States.

The album itself contains some excellent indie songwriting. Layers of shimmering acoustic and electric guitars permeate every song. The opening chords of songs like “My Decay” evoke early, Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd, while others like “Better Pickups” bridge the gap between ‘70s psychedelic rock and modern indie sensations like Kurt Vile. In order to reproduce the sounds on the album, the band uses 12 string guitars and places emphasis on both loud, fast songs and slow, mellow ones during their live show.  

“We hadn’t heard the term power-trio until we got here,” Nothing said about the Salad Boys’ live approach. “We’re a pretty true live band to the recording. You can expect a mixture of, you know, softer and more sincere songs, with like, raucous numbers as well.”


Often in their live sets, the Salad Boys rely on the subtle art of being able to read an audience and play based on the feeling in the room. As a result, the Salad Boys’ favorite songs to play live change based on how the audience reacts.

“It really depends on the crowd, a lot of people think the louder, faster numbers are really good. Also some of the more slow kind of, like, prettier songs are really rewarding to play as well,”  Nothing said. “I think we all really like playing ‘Dream Date’ and ‘No Chase Bomber’ as well, because we’ll start jamming at the end.”