Peelander-Z returns to Ruston’s Sundown Tavern for another show

July 13, 2017

Peelander Yellow (foreground) holds the microphone so Peelander Green can sing into it. – Photo by Brian Blakely


Dillon Nelson
Staff Reporter | djn005@latech.edu


Ruston got another dose of Japanese-flavored-fun Saturday as everyone’s favorite punk-rock aliens rocked out at Sundown Tavern.


Peelander-Z, Ruston’s premiere anime-meets-comic-book-styled punk rockers, returned April 26 to entertain and make people smile.


Kengo Hioki, or Peelander Yellow, is the frontman of the group. He said he was glad to be back in Ruston.


“Last time we were here the people, they were crazy, and we loved it,” he said. “We wanted to see them smile again because we are not from this planet, and we are not human beings.”


Hioki said the band has in-character motivations for returning to places they enjoy playing. He said the race of aliens the band members are a part of feed on smiles.


“Our project is that we play and collect smiles,” he said. “Once we get smiles, we send them back to our people so they can eat.”


Zachary Kaul, a Ruston local, said he missed the last show, but had heard several good reviews about openers, Gar Gar, and Peelander-Z’s last show here. He said even though Gar Gar’s music was not his favorite style of music, he enjoyed his general aesthetic regardless.


“I’m big into stage art, and that’s what the band was,” he said. “The band members looking like a gumball machine and a mannequin and the lead singer passing out spider rings was all part of his art, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.”


Kaul said when Peelander-Z got on stage the energy was already high, but the band managed to amp it up even further by interacting with the crowd.


“They incorporated the crowd right off the bat, and there was a lot of call and response to the show which was all really fun and engaging,” he said. “They played ‘S.T.E.A.K.’ and ‘Selfie,’ which are always fun, and they really showcased the unique angle they have with punk-pop music.”


Taylor Nelson, a cook at Sundown, said hewas also glad he finally got to see the band. He said the band seemed versatile and energetic.


“They were pretty likeable,” he said. “It wasn’t punk like you would normally think about it because, though they did go pretty hard at times, they seemed to have that winning pop sense about themselves.”


Nelson said the band’s return was wisely planned by the bookers at Sundown Tavern because there have been numerous recent opportunities for live music around Ruston lately. He said the band’s second appearance continues Ruston’s current hot streak.


“Tech has those two festivals in the past few weeks and the Railway Festival was great, so Peelander coming back just seemed like even more of a blessing,” he said. “Ruston’s growing, so it’s going to help to have festivals and cool bands like them passing through.”


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