Mons La Hire is an indie rock band based in Corvallis, OR comprising Daniel Watkins (guitar/vocals/etc), Suzanne Watkins (bass/vocals/violin), Greg Miller (drums), Ida Jane (guitar/keyboard/vocals) and Julia Miller (guitar/keyboard/vocals).
The band formed in 2015 as Daniel and Suzanne Watkins relocated from Philadelphia, PA to Corvallis, OR, and put out a Craigslist ad looking for people who could play Paranoid Android.
Up until May 2017, Daniel was the primary songwriter for the band, taking his influences from a wide range of guitar rock, from the meandering stories of Belle and Sebastian and the folk-grounded guitar freakouts of Wilco to the directness of the Strokes. New members Ida and Julia are also songwriters, and the band is excited to begin incorporating their compositions.
Mons La Hire’s debut album, An Ad Hoc Ecosystem, was released on March 1, 2016. The album was composed in response to the RPM Challenge, that is, the album was composed and recorded solely during the month of February. The lyrics are a collage of phrases from books and other print materials ranging from Billy Collins’ poetry and Ray Bradbury’s prose to the comedic adventure stories of Daniel Pinkwater.
The follow-up to An Ad Hoc Ecosystem, the Warning Lights EP, arrived on May 19, 2017. It features live favorites Timothy Everett (Is Late For Work) and Parallels, a new power pop version of the Garden (which originally appeared on An Ad Hoc Ecosystem), and three brand new songs: Moriah (in the Land of Milk and Honey), Rumors, and Warning Lights. Ida Jane and Julia Miller joined the band just prior to the release of Warning Lights.
Work on the follow up to Warning Lights began in April 2018. The EP Kind of Neutral, Kind of Blue will be released on CD and cassette on October 26, 2018 and features five songs:
1. Waking Up In Oregon
2. First Year Blues
3. Jesus, etc. (Wilco cover)
4. Shadow Wolves
5. Between Us
Most of it was recorded at Western Oregon University by Cole Johnston, with supplementary recording done at Daniel’s house in Corvallis.
See what other people think.
A Fresh, New Mons La Hire – Roman Battaglia (KBVR-FM Cassette)
Warning Lights EP Review – Johnny Beaver (The Corvallis Advocate)
Mons La Hire returns with a new EP – Roman Battaglia (KBVR-FM Cassette)
Music To Be Heard – Samantha Lopez (Oregon State University Barometer)
And just for fun, a review from someone who doesn’t seem to get poetry and thinks we sing off key:
Mons La Hire’s interesting experiment falls short – Adrian Bambace (24ourmusic)