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Keith Buckley returns with Soul Patch

You would think that after another year of touring the world fronting Buffalo hardcore heroes Every Time I Die, releasing his debut novel and penning a weekly advice column, Keith Buckley would be due to begin the new year with a breather.

On Jan. 8, though, the musician’s other group, the 1990s loving alt-rock cover band Soul Patch, will return to Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar (253 Allen St.) to kick off 2016 in nostalgic style.

“I feel like what started off as a kind of ironic joke really became something special because there is a sincere power behind it,” Buckley said. “Our shows are like that movie ‘Cocoon,’ all these people who grew up and got jaded and weighed down get in the room and they become kids again. There’s no anger. No worry. Everyone is very in the moment, even though that moment is 20 years ago.”

Buckley’s side gig, ideally, should be a way to wind down with friends, his ETID band mate Steve Micciche included, and let loose on stage. But even with years of playing sold-out clubs and all-day music festivals on his resume, the singer feels a sense of pressure playing a set of songs that his audience grew up so dearly on including “Say It Ain’t So” by Weezer and “My Own Worst Enemy” by Lit.

“Soul Patch shows are infinitely more stressful,” he admitted. “These songs we play have a very prominent position in the museum of peoples’ hearts. They are tied to some personal, emotional times and if we can’t do them justice, it’s as if we broke into their nostalgia and vandalized it.

“There is a right and a wrong way to play someone else’s songs. However, exactly like an ETID show, crowd participation is everything. We want people to behave as if they’re seeing the real bands playing in a small bar.”

Since the now six-piece band debuted on Duke’s stage back in 2012, the group has stayed active while ETID is home on break. And while playing a pair of sold-out Halloween shows at Mohawk Place and the Hamlin House to serve as the post-game entertainment following Every Time I Die’s annual Christmas bangers is all and good fun, the singer points to its most unexpected show as the peak of the Soul Patch run.

“The most memorable show was a result of a show almost not happening at all,” Buckley explained. “Last summer we were scheduled to play outside on Woodlawn Beach but like all moms, Mother Nature tried to repress our natural instinct to jam and unleashed a torrential downpour. Flipping her a collective middle finger, we asked the fine folk at the Pink on Allen Street if we could set up in the back and have an indoor beach party.

“They gave us the green light because the Pink, the most magical place on earth and the show that took place is, in my mind, one of the highlights of my years in this city.”

Buckley and crew are set to begin another year of memories starting at 10 p.m. Jan. 8 in Duke’s. A cover of $5 is due at the door and guilty pleasures are more than welcome.

Buckley said a normal Soul Patch fan is “beholden to the past, resentful of the present and fearful of the future,” Buckley said. “The first time in your life, no one will judge you for singing Third Eye Blind at the top of your lungs.”

Preview

Soul Patch

When: 10 p.m. Jan. 8

Where: Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar (253 Allen St.)

Admission: $5

Info: dukesbohemiangrovebar.com