The humor and energy of punk meets the compositional and musical chops of progressive rock in Jaded Babies, the band that nobody asked for, but everyone needs. Their music is nuanced and complex yet catchy, and the sometimes silly, sometimes raunchy lyrics can sneak up on you. Before you know it you’re tapping your toes to their poop jokes. “Many people think progressive rock must be serious and self-indulgent,” says guitarist and singer Bryan Zeigler. “But we want to make music that is good for you and fun. Like a porn star performing your prostate exam.” 

While they do perform covers by their influences, artists like The Tubes, Porcupine Tree and Frank Zappa, the focus of a Jaded Babies show is on their own original intricate, yet accessible mixture of rock, comedy, pop, progressive and surrealism. A subtle tribute to Rush has lyrics about the passive-aggressive post-it note battles that take place in a condo complex, while a pop song about the joys of returning home to one’s own bathroom changes key ten times. Jaded Babies is the playpen where Steely Dan and Butthole Surfers dance to Yes. And it’s so much fun! 

And it’s not just music. They wear costumes, give away prizes you may or may not want, and generally make a bizarre carnival of it all. Expect the unexpected, and for no two shows to ever be the same. “It’s like visiting Chuck E. Cheese while tripping,” says Zeigler with an earnest grimace. It’s ultimately all about whatever makes them laugh, but they’ll bring you along for an amazing ride. A recent host brought them to the stage by saying, “Hurry up and call your friends to get here right now. You’ve got about ten minutes, call as many people as you can.”