A few years ago, San Diego punk-rock hero John Reis decided that he was tired of playing in two or three bands at the same time. He disbanded both Rocket from the Crypt and Hot Snakes in 2005 and broke up the Sultans in 2007. Since then, he has merely been running a record label (Swami Records), operating a nightclub (Bar Pink), hosting a radio show (on FM 94/9), doing voice-over work for a cartoon (Yo Gabba Gabba), and being a father. Oh, and he formed another band, the Night Marchers, and put out a great record. That’s right: While most of us can’t seem to find time to do our laundry, Reis, at 40, still does five times the work of musicians half his age. And the craziest thing is that so much of what he does is really good.
The Night Marchers are kind of a supergroup of the underground, featuring drummer Jason Kourkounis (the Delta 72), guitarist Gar Wood (Beehive & the Barracudas) — both of whom were also in the Hot Snakes — and bassist Tommy Kitsos (CPC Gangbangs). The band’s sound has the rhythmic drive of Rocket from the Crypt, but with less swagger and more swing. It has a bit of the weirdness of Hot Snakes and Drive Like Jehu, but more in the lyrics than anything else. And it has the attention to melody of the Sultans, but lots more of it. “We’re Goin’ Down,” the closing song on the band’s 2008 See You in Magic, is perhaps the catchiest thing Reis has ever done.
NIGHT MARCHERS: Bar Pink, Thursday, December 31, 9 p.m. 619-564-7194. $20.