Smith Westerns Discuss Their Evolving Onstage Strategy

Smith Westerns Discuss Their Evolving Onstage Strategy
Chicago-based indie rockers Smith Westerns have made a name for themselves by touring incessantly and opening for acts such as Wilco and MGMT, but according to lead singer Cullen Omori, the band plan to tour less in the future and will be headlining more often.

"We got a lot smarter as far as choosing the right place to play, and when we come to a city, we're not opening for some band our fans can't afford to go see," Omori tells Exclaim! while discussing their upcoming tour. "It will be a better representation of us, because touring when you're supporting and doing other stuff makes it more of a grind and doesn't make the shows as good."

And although the band may have initially turned heads for their brand of scrappy, lo-fi garage rock, Omori adds the group's been improving on their live presence as well.

"We've definitely been striving to make it sound just like the record, and it's something we've gotten closer and closer to each touring cycle," he says. "I think it's going to be a much better show musically, and as we go, the lights and visuals will be a lot more powerful."

Smith Westerns' third album, Soft Will, is out now on Mom + Pop Music. Read our full interview with Omori here and catch the band as they roll through Canada for a set of shows in late July.

Tour dates:

7/21 Nashville, TN - Exit In
7/23 Washington, DC - Black Cat
7/24 Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg
7/26 Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer
7/27 Cambridge, MA - The Sinclair
7/28 Montreal, QC - Cabaret Mile End
7/29 Toronto, ON - Lee's Palace
8/2 Chicago, IL - Lollapalooza
8/5 Kansas City, MO - The Riot Room
8/6 Denver, CO - Bluebird Theater
8/7 Salt Lake City, UT - Urban Lounge
8/9 San Francisco, CA – Outside Lands Festival
8/10 Los Angeles, CA - El Rey Theatre
8/11 Pomona, CA - The Glass House
8/12 San Diego, CA - Casbah
8/15 Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge
8/16 Seattle, WA - The Crocodile
8/17 Vancouver, BC - Electric Owl
8/20 Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theater
10/4-6 Austin, TX - Austin City Limits Festival
10/11-13 Austin, TX - Austin City Limits Festival