Sensory Overload: Silo the Huskie at Volatility

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

For years, the members of Silo the Huskie talked about getting back together for a one-off show. And because guitarist Chris Bair has been helping organize Madlab Theatre's annual benefit concert, Volatility, since it began seven years ago, he always lobbied to do the reunion there.

Bair is finally getting his wish: Silo will take the stage for the first time in five years at this weekend's Volatility. But he's getting a little more than the one-night stand he signed up for.

"We got back together to give the festival a little more value," Bair said. "Actually, we're going to continue past this and probably start doing new material."

Silo, a staple of the '90s rock scene, could be viewed as a forebear to hard-touring Columbus rock powerhouse Two Cow Garage. Like Two Cow, Silo combined steel-toed twang with punk-infused rock 'n' roll, though the band also manifested signs of the guitar-centric indie rock of their day - think Built to Spill gone alt-country.

They began in the early '90s when singer-guitarist Brian Barlup teamed with guitarist Kevin Spain, bassist Pete Cline and drummer John O'Connor. Bair later replaced Spain on guitar and, after some shuffling, Stuart Van Vyven emerged as the definitive Silo drummer.

They toured and recorded for more than a decade, playing festivals like Austin's South by Southwest and drawing acclaim in publications like CMJ. But eventually life got in the way, and without officially breaking up, they slowed to a halt.

"One of the guys lived with a girl. Next thing you know, we all end up moving in and eventually getting married," Bair said. "Actually everyone in that lineup has a child now."

After Van Vyven moved to Cincinnati, Neal Schmitt (Pretty Mighty Mighty, Workbook Studios) sat in on drums for some of the last shows Silo played after releasing sophomore LP Sons of Columbus. Dan Bandman (Bookmobile, The Kyle Sowashes, The Handshake) has taken over drum duties for this latest chapter.

Though the band plans to write new material, don't expect to hear any of it Saturday.

"Frankly, I do not think anybody wants to hear a new song from us right now," Bair said. "[The setlist is] songs that, if you follow the band at all, you've heard."

Volatility schedule


2:00 The Shazzbots

3:00 Captain Exploder

3:45 The Garrison

4:30 Hotel War

5:30 Bicentennial Bear

6:30 Hotel Eden

7:30 Deerhead

8:30 Silo The Huskie

10:00 The Receiver

11:00 Ghost Shirt

12:00 Bozniaks

Other performers:

Full Frontal Nudity

Fake Bacon

The Shimmy Shake Project


Parlor Tricks

Khalida Tribe


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Silo the Huskie at Volatility

When: Saturday, July 18

Where: Madlab Theatre, Downtown