Over the past year, Florida’s The Heavy Pets have been busy in the studio, and the group is gearing up to release their latest full-length album, Strawberry Mansion, on February 23rd. The new album—which will be released independently with some help from All Points Boats and APB Studios—marks The Heavy Pets’ first full-length studio album since 2011’s Swim Out Past The Sun, though the band has released some EPs during that seven-year period. Strawberry Mansion will be available on major streaming sites and for purchase in double vinyl, CD, and digital formats.It’s clear that the buzz around the group’s new album is growing, and given the group’s feel-good new tunes, it’s clear why. Strawberry Mansion‘s opening track, “Higher”, is a delightfully funky song with an island and some ska-like leanings. Plus, the group recently debuted the 70’s street-funk number, “Shahryar’s Rage”, and the track has over 100,000+ listens in just a couple of short weeks.Read on below to hear The Heavy Pets’ own Jeff Lloyd’s thoughts on the upcoming Strawberry Mansion, plus check out the group’s newly announced tour dates, including an album release party at Fort Lauderdale’s Culture Room on Friday, February 23rd, and an opening gig for Umphrey’s McGee at Whigfest Music & Arts Festival in Tampa, on February 18th.The Heavy Pets’ guitarists and vocalists, Jeff Lloyd and Mike Garulli, are no strangers to throwing an epic party. Most recently, the band hosted a three-set Festival After Party at Boca Raton’s The Funky Biscuit, which featured a second set that saw sit-ins from the likes of Eric Krasno, MonoNeon, DJ Logic, Tedeschi Trucks Band saxophonist Kebbi Williams, and trumpeter Ephraim Owens, highlighting how much respect the Pets have garnered in the greater jam and funk scene.The Heavy Pets With Eric Krasno, DJ Logic, MonoNeon, & The Tedeschi Trucks Band Horns – “Between The Sheets > Dewpoint”[via CHeeSeHeaDPRoDuCTioNS]We had the opportunity to speak with The Heavy Pets’ lead guitarist and vocalist, Jeff Lloyd, to discuss the inspiration behind the new album, the album’s special guest collaborators, and more. Check it out below! L4LM: This is the band’s first full album since 2011’s Swim Out Past The Sun. Did it feel good to get back in the studio and make some new music?Jeff Lloyd: It felt fantastic. We focused on a series of EPs over the last few years and felt it was time to get back in and produce a full-length record. We had a ton of material ready to go, so we felt it was time again to make a longer statement. I think we really found a process that works for us—recording at a variety of South Florida studios including our own, and finishing everything at the Power Station, where we have done the bulk of our work the last few years.L4LM: I’m assuming that’s a guest vocalist on “Shahryar’s Rage”. Who are the special guests on the album?JL: Actually, no. That’s our very own Jim Wuest singing lead on “Shahryar’s Rage”, with the rest of us singing some pretty rich harmonies in the back. It’s a cool sound and very uniquely Jim. We do have some South Florida friends we are proud to have on the record, including Michael McCleary (guitarist of Surfer Blood) on trombone and Rob Smiley on saxophone for the closing track “Holy Holy.”L4LM: Is that you or Mike playing slide on “The Ibis”? Sounds very Derek Trucks-inspired. Totally digging it. JL: That’s our dear friend, the one-and-only Roosevelt Collier! Ha, I wish I could play like that. He absolutely slayed that track—took my vision to a whole different level—but this should come as no surprise to me after working with him for so many years. That’s what he does. I absolutely love the parts he laid down, and the back and forth he does with Jim on the Hammond for the solo section.L4LM: What was some inspirations for the music y’all wrote on the album? JL: “The Ibis” was literally inspired by me waking to a yard full of birds one morning and doing a little research. Fascinating creatures. “Real News” I’d written years ago and thought pretty apt for today. There is so much going on on this record, and it is taking me back to our beginnings—a group of friends with a big group of songs. I still feel we are just getting started.The Heavy Pets will celebrate the release of Strawberry Mansion with a proper album release party at Fort Lauderdale’s Culture Room on Friday, February 23rd (get tickets here). In support of the new album, The Heavy Pets will head out on the road for an extensive run of headlining dates with support from acts such as Goose, The Clock Reads, and The Steady Flow. Additional shows include appearances at Fractal Beach Music Festival at Historic Virginia Key Beach Park in Miami on February 4th and opening for Umphrey’s McGee at Whigfest Music & Arts Festival in Tampa on February 18th. Take a listen to “Higher”, and check out a full list of tour dates below.The Heavy Pets Tour DatesFEB 17 – Jacksonville, FL – 1904 Music HallFEB 18 – Tampa, FL – Whigfest*FEB 23 – Fort Lauderdale, FL – Culture RoomMAR 01 – Charlotte, NC – The Rabbit HoleMAR 02 – Asheville, NC – Funkatorium, Wicked Weed BrewingMAR 03 – Savannah, GA – Barrelhouse SouthMAR 08 – Fort Collins, CO – Hodi’s Half Note**MAR 09 – Denver, CO – Be On KeyMAR 10 – Denver, CO – Be On KeyMAR 21 – Jupiter, FL – GuanabanasMAR 22 – Dunedin, FL – Spring Beer Jam, Dunedin BreweryMAR 23 – Key West, FL – Smokin’ TunaMAR 24 – Key West, FL – Smokin’ TunaMAR 25 – Key West, FL – Green ParrotAPR 07 – Davie, FL – David Posnack Jewish Community Center, Orlove AuditoriumAPR 14 – Fort Pierce, FL – Sailfish Street PartyAPR 25 – Washington, DC – Pearl Street WarehouseAPR 26 – Philadelphia, PA – Milkboy***APR 27 – Providence, RI – Fete LoungeAPR 28 – New Haven, CT – Pacific Standard TavernAPR 29 – Allston, MA – Wonder BarMAY 02 – Brooklyn, NY – Knitting FactoryMAY 03 – Manchester, NH – Jewel Music Venue****MAY 04 – Norwalk, CT – Wall Street Theater****MAY 05 – Albany, NY – The Hollow****JUN 06 – Arcata, CA – Humboldt BrewsJUN 07 – Nevada City, CA – Crazy Horse SaloonJUN 08 – San Francisco, CA – Boom Boom Room* supporting Umphrey’s McGee** w/ The Steady Flow*** w/ The Clock Reads**** w/ Goose
St. Louis Track competed against South Ripley, Jac-Cen-Del and Madison Shawe.The girls who won ribbons were: Pam Meneses 2nd in the shot, 2nd in the discus and 5th in the 800m. Elizabeth Gigrich 2nd in the 100m and 2nd in the 200m. Allie Savage 4th in the 100m. Hope Kroen, Pam Meneses, Nicole Amberger and Elizabeth Gigrich 3rd in the 4X100 relay. Pam, Nicole, Hope and Elizabeth 2nd in the 4X400 relay. The boys who won ribbons were: Mike Wanstrath 3rd in the shot and 2nd in the discus. Aiden Geers 5th in the high jump. Max Giesting 4th in the long jump, 3rd in the hurdles and 5th in the 100m. Tyler kuntz 1st in the 1600m and 1st in the 800m. Tyler, Conner Ertle, Aiden and Max 3rd in the 4X400 relay.
Week 15 Fantasy Busts: DefensesPittsburgh Steelers vs. Bills (Heyen). I couldn’t really arrive at a great bust defense this week, so I’ll play on the narrative that Josh Allen’s been better at protecting the ball and has enough weapons to put points up in Pittsburgh on Sunday night.Minnesota Vikings @ Chargers (Iyer). This is a trap for a long road trip on the flip side of a serious potential upset.Chicago Bears @ Packers (Lutovsky). Even though we like the Bears to limit Aaron Rodgers, we don’t think it will completely shut down the Packers offense or force many turnovers. It’s been mediocre most of the year, and the Packers don’t make many mistakes, so this is a low-upside play. WEEK 15 NON-PPR RANKINGS: Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | KickerYou guys made it too easy for us to get one particular bust call right last week: Darwin Thompson was always unlikely to have a good game against a strong Pats’ defense, but fantasy owners swooned over him. We weren’t as right about Mostert, who simply proved that he’s the man to own in the San Francisco backfield, but as we already said, we’re going back to that well. The Chris Carson bust call also backfired, with Rashaad Penny’s knee injury really freeing him up to shine.WEEK 15 PPR RANKINGS: Running back | Wide receiver | Tight endDon’t even get us started on the Drew Brees bust pick — if you sat him, we’re very sorry. Those six touchdowns were undoubtedly tough to stomach on your bench. At least we got the Marquise Brown and Brandin Cooks bust picks right, and Mark Andrews’ injury helped us get that right, too. MORE WEEK 15: Sleepers | Start ’em, sit ’emWeek 15 Fantasy Busts: Running backsDevonta Freeman, Falcons @ 49ers (Billy Heyen). It’s not hard to figure out that starting a player against the 49ers is risky, even after they just gave up more than 40 points to the Saints. The more pertinent information is that Alvin Kamara didn’t have a big game, and neither will Freeman. Adrian Peterson, Redskins @ Eagles (Vinnie Iyer). The Eagles are very hard to run on, especially with a power runner, and Peterson should be shut down with more of Chris Thompson in the mix.Raheem Mostert, 49ers vs. Falcons (Matt Lutovsky). Everything is pointing in Mostert’s direction. He’s scored in three straight games, dominating RB snaps in each of the past two. The Falcons also aren’t a very good defense, and this feels like a game the 49ers should win easily, which would presumably create more second-half carries for Mostert. But we just have a bad feeling. Despite his snap advantage, he had just five more touches than Matt Breida last week, and it’s worth noting that one of his TDs came on a trick play where he caught a pass from Emmanuel Sanders. The Falcons are actually decent against RBs (tied for 20th in fantasy points allowed), and the game flow might actually lead to Mostert sitting more in the second half if he’s not needed. Plus, do you really think he’s going to score four games in a row? By no means is Mostert a “must-sit”, but there are more worries here than you might initially realize. MORE WEEK 15:Waiver pickups | FAAB planner | Stock watch | Snap counts | Fantasy playoff tipsWeek 15 Fantasy Football Busts: QuarterbacksJimmy Garoppolo, 49ers vs. Falcons (Heyen). This isn’t so much me expecting Garoppolo to have a bad game. Rather, I worry that people are too all-in on the idea that Garoppolo will throw enough to make this great matchup matter. Sure, he could find his way to three touchdowns, but I don’t expect a game like last week.Josh Allen, Steelers vs. Bills (Iyer). You need to keep him parked against a tougher defense than he faced last week.Aaron Rodgers, Packers vs. Bears (Lutovsky). Rodgers has had fewer than two TDs in four of the past five games, and he’s failed to top 243 yards in any of the games in that span. He has a history of lighting up the Bears, but that didn’t carry over to Week 1 this year (203 yards, one TD). The Bears have remained stout against QBs most of the year (13.9 fantasy points per game in four-point passing touchdown leagues), so it’s tough to be excited about Rodgers here.Week 15 Fantasy Football Busts: Wide receiversAllen Robinson, Bears @ Packers (Heyen). Robinson should probably get the Jaire Alexander treatment, which more often than not has led to quiet WR games. This could be a game where the targets swing back in Anthony Miller’s favor.Stefon Diggs, Vikings @ Chargers (Iyer). You may need to use him in seasonal, but he’s going to get old NFC North friend Casey Hayward, and the Bolts’ defense can bolt him down.James Washignton/Diontae Johnson, Steelers vs. Bills (Lutovsky). Only one team allows fewer fantasy points to WRs than the Bills this year, so it’s foolish to gamble on a coin-flip WR like Washington or Johnson. WEEK 15 DFS LINEUPS:FD Cash | FD GPP | DK Cash | DK GPP | Y! Cash | Y! GPPWeek 15 Fantasy Football Busts: Tight endsDavid Njoku, Browns @ Cardinals (Heyen). Njoku has been dealing with a knee injury all week, and he had surprisingly little usage in his first game back from a wrist injury last week. Arizona is the best matchup for any TE, but Njoku might not get enough targets for it to matter.Jacob Hollister, Seahawks @ Panthers (Iyer). With Luke Kuechly and their safeties, the Panthers have been typically good in this kind of coverage.Kyle Rudolph, Vikings @ Chargers (Lutovsky). Rudolph’s TD streak came to an end last week, as he received just two targets and posted 11 yards. It’s tempting to use him as long as Adam Thielen (hamstring) is out, but against the Chargers, who allow just 6.5 non-PPR fantasy points per game to TEs, he offers more risk than reward. MORE WEEK 15 DFS: Values | Stacks | Lineup Builder Sorry, Adrian Peterson. Week 15 has the potential to start your last hurrah with Derrius Guice out, but our Week 15 busts list doesn’t think so. The Eagles just aren’t a good matchup for the future Hall of Famer, and while he should get the workload, the numbers probably won’t follow. The same could be true of Aaron Rodgers, and while not a future HOFer, popular waiver pickup Raheem Mostert might also be on the unhappy side of the fantasy start ’em, sit ’em bubble.We’re also concerned about usual fantasy starters, such as Devonta Freeman (@ 49ers) and Josh Allen (@ Steelers). Injuries combined with bad matchups could spoil the week for early-season fantasy stalwarts JuJu Smith-Schuster and Evan Engram, too. (Update: Injuries already spoiled the week for them because they’re both officially out.)