Emo Pioneer Tim Kinsella Plays Vincent’s Ear in Asheville

A whole lot of people have a whole lot of opinions regarding the sub-genre of music known as emo. The reason for this seems to stem from the fact that a whole lot of emo musicians have a whole lot of opinions regarding the sub-genre of emo.

Some say the emo movement started with hard core punks turned indie-rockers Fugazi. Others say that Fugazi’s undefinable, and the emo movement didn’t get started until Jets to Brazil. Yet others say that emo was invented the same day that a Scotsman decided to make his socks plaid, thereby inventing argyle. A much-hated fourth party is under the misconception that Green Day is emo.

Emo stands for “emotional hard core,” and it’s a type of punk-hard core music with jazzier, more intricate guitar riffs and lyrics about getting dumped by girls, falling in love with girls, getting killed by girls, or writing songs about girls.

One particularly innovative emo band in the early 90s was Cap’n Jazz. With some of the heaviest, yet most beautiful music around combined with heartfelt and honestly intellectual lyrics, the band made a name for themselves on the Chicago independent scene, and, nearly posthumously, gained cult popularity with emo fans worldwide.

However, around that time, Cap’n Jazz broke up, and the members went two different directions. Half the band formed the ever-popular, yet often mocked, The Promise Ring. The other half, including brothers Tim and Mike Kinsella, formed the more talented of the two bands, Joan of Arc.

Joan of Arc’s music was similar to that of Cap’n Jazz but often lighter and more refined. The intellectual concepts remained the same, with large vocabulary describing misadventures with people of the feminine kind. They’ve released three studio albums and a live album, the best of which being the live album, followed very closely by the almost eponymous A Portable Model of Joan of Arc.

Then, unexpectedly, Joan of Arc took a breather, and now lead guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Tim Kinsella (sometimes referred to as Tim Sinkilla) has taken to the road with a solo act. As part of his six-city tour, he’ll be playing at Vincent’s Ear in Asheville this Friday night.

Fans who aren’t quite sure of what Kinsella’s solo act might sound like should take solace in the fact that as lead songwriter for Cap’n Jazz and Joan of Arc, Kinsella has a wealth of talent that no doubt translates into excellent solo music. Emo kids should take solace in the fact that even though his bands have ranged from near hard-rock to acoustic pop, Kinsella has always retained the emo-y mindset that has made his groups so popular.

Tim Kinsella will be playing Vincent’s Ear Coffee House this Friday at 10pm. Cover charge will be seven dollars.