Finn’s Motel is a pop/rock/indie/alt band from St. Louis, Missouri. The current lineup is (as pictured above) Jack Petracek (drums and percussion), Steve Scariano (bass guitar), Joe Thebeau (vocals, guitar), and Scott Roever (lead guitar).
Rising up from the ashes of a nervous breakdown in 2004, Joe Thebeau started recording demos for what would become 2006’s Escape Velocity album. At first, the songs were an escape from the daily grind; a catharsis. They developed into a conspiracy theory involving the corporate working world and its plan to destroy the very people it employed. As it evolved, the laws of physics seemed to be relevant to an explanation for the way we move in orbits and are drawn toward and forced away from each other. Friends in Prisonshake, including Scat Records’ Robert Griffin, Steve Scariano, and Patrick Hawley heard the demos and volunteered to make it a full-fledged rock record. Mixed by Champaign-Urbana rock savant Adam Schmitt, the recordings were transformed from basement rock to ready for the big stage. After a mini-tour in 2006 and a trip to SXSW in 2007, Finn’s Motel returned to the basement to work on new songs, this time as a band. Some progress was made on demos but ultimately they were put on ice. Prisonshake released the double-album Dirty Moons which would be the last in their catalog. The Griff hung up his spikes soon after and Finn’s Motel went on hiatus.
Over the course of 10 years or so, recording sessions would materialize and songs would hit various stages of completion, but, a return to college from 2010-2013 kept Thebeau too busy to finish. Lots of songs were started and stopped and started again. It wasn’t until 2014 or so that he got to work, in earnest, employing the help of former bandmate and sometimes Finn’s Motel live compatriot, Matt Meyer.
The first set of new tunes in 10 years, Jupiter Rex, was released on Record Store Day in 2017. In the early days of air travel, crossing the equator was celebrated with a certificate stating you had crossed Into the Realm of Jupiter Rex. The record tells tales of lines and latitudes and crossing boundaries across a musical landscape of rock, pop, indie rock, and the occasional acoustic tune. Around this time, Hawley decided to hang up his skates, at least w/re to Finn’s Motel (you can still find him on Erik Voeks’ records). So, to start playing shows two new cats were brought into the fold: Scott Roever (Treeweasels) on guitar and Jack Petracek (Grandpa’s Ghost) on drums. While this new lineup started rehearsing and playing live shows, the team of Meyer and Thebeau kept working on mixes and masters and delivered Quinta del Sordo just in time for Christmas 2017. Quinta del Sordo is the name of the residence where painter Francisco Goya spent his final years and also where he painted the famous Black Paintings directly on the walls. Quinta del Sordo re-paints some of those images of life and death using guitars, bass, and drums.
Still in recording mode, Thebeau went digging backward and resurrected the demos from 2007 and fleshed them out to create the Stone Lions EP in 2018. Soon after, Finn’s Motel’s new lineup would start working on new music, sometimes in Joe’s basement and sometimes in Jack’s newly christened Rolltop Studios. The plans for continuing work sort of hit the skids early in 2020 when Covid struck. But, we’re working remotely to finish up what is most likely to be at least two full-length albums. The title song for the first planned album, Fireworks or Lightning was released on video on what was supposed to be Record Store Day 2020.
Finn’s Motel also has:
- Free WiF
- 24-hour front desk and room service for guests
- All guest rooms in the motel are equipped with a flat-screen TV.
- All rooms come with air conditioning and a private bathroom.
Joe Thebeau – vocals and guitars
Steve Scariano – bass guitar
Scott Roever – guitar
Jack Petracek – drums