Local band hopes to book venues before two-thirds of members graduate

Local band loves community, audience during performances.



Bathtub Toasters enjoy their time together before two-thirds graduate.


When Jack Christensen picked up a bass guitar five years ago, he did not expect to play in a local band in his college town during his final year of school. 

Christensen, WSU senior business and communications major, said his band, Bathtub Toasters, does not have a huge origin story though. 

He met the other two members of the band earlier this year, and they started playing together for fun, he said. 

Isak Pickel, WSU senior broadcasting production major, is on the drums, and met Christensen after interviewing him for a class project. 

Arturo Bieghler, University of Idaho junior civil engineering major, plays the guitar. Christensen said he hosted a concert in his living room for his 21st birthday, and Beighler happened to come across the concert, and from then on, Bathtub Toasters came to be.

Christensen’s private concert for his birthday went so well that, after Bathtub Toasters formed, he brought up the idea of holding a public one. 

After they started playing together, Christensen wondered if it would be cool to get good enough and fast enough to actually play at a house show in a short amount of time, he said. 

“Three weeks later, we played at the show and we got really good response from the crowd, people really dug it and the show itself was crazy,” he said. “We had a couple Spokane-based bands there and then us so it was a great first show. Probably the best first show we could have asked for.” 

Pickel said initially, Bathtub Toasters wasn’t the name of the band; it was actually originally named Daddy Issues.

“We didn’t really like that as much and then I remember we were talking about just band names, and [Bathtub Toasters] was one of them that came up because we’re talking about suicide or something,” he said. 

Besides the house show, Bathtub Toasters has played in Reaney Park, a studio in Jackson Hall and are performing in a trailer park on Thursday as well. 

Bieghler said the band mainly plays a pop-punk style of music, but will play some alternative rock.

The energy from the crowds they perform in front of is Pickel’s favorite part of playing, he said. 

“If you give that energy off in the room, then people feed off that and just give it right back to you,” he said. “It’s a really cool feeling.”

Christensen said he enjoys the feel of community around playing in the band, whether it be from the crowds they play for or even just his bandmates. 

“We’re just playing a couple of four-chord punk songs and people come out to our shows and make friends, and that’s really special to me,” he said. 

Bieghler said his favorite memory with the band was the house show they did together because it sounded good and was just a fun time all around. It was a thrilling experience, and he was so excited, his stomach hurt after.  

“I remember like leaving the stage and like I couldn’t breathe,” Pickel said. 

Christensen said he feels the same way as Pickel and Beighler because he wasn’t expecting a huge crowd for that first show and was worried they were going to get booed off the stage. 

But, the second they hit their first note, a mosh pit instantly started, and all of Christensen’s worries went away, he said. 

The three of them have all been around music their entire lives, Christensen said. 

“It’s a really special thing. And it’s something that has allowed us to always kind of connect with each other, having similar music tastes and you know, similar music backgrounds,” he said. Along with the bass guitar, Christensen said he is on vocals, but he said he enjoys playing bass because of his ability to play mediocre guitar. 

Pickel used to play guitar, but now he plays the drums and does backup vocals, he said. 

“I play drums because it was the first instrument I really gravitated towards. I think I started playing when I was 12. And then I kind of escaped that and I played guitar for a bit,” he said. “But now that I’m back on drums, it’s just like riding a bike.”

Beighler said he plays guitar and has been playing for a long time because it is what he is comfortable with. 

“It’s what I know. And I’ve been in other bands before but they’ve never gone as well as this band has,” he said. 

During some of their performances, Bathtub Toasters has teamed up with Spokane-based bands such as Fine Line and plan to perform with them again in the future, Christensen said. 

While the band has not made any money yet, they hope to get some merch out soon and start booking venues in the spring as well, he said. 

But, the future of the band is unsure after Christensen and Pickel graduate. 

“We know that this lineup won’t be together after this year,” Christensen said. “If the Bathtub Toasters lives on is kind of yet to be seen.”