Discover Little Rock
Upcoming Shows
No Shows Scheduled
The Casual Pleasures
Location: Little Rock, AR


Biography: A Little Rock, Arkansas based band pulling influences from post-punk, new wave, psychedelic, and experimental rock. Their sound is in the vein of Radiohead, Pink Floyd, The Flaming Lips, early Cure, Grandaddy, and Pavement. The band evolved from the creative collaboration of founding members Nathan Houser (keys/vox/lyrics) and Jesse Lawson (gtr/vox). Houser and Lawson are backed live by Brad Birge (Bass) and Shayne Gray (Drums). Officially established in 2014, the band’s self-released 6-song debut-demo was released on January 5, 2014. They were chosen as Semi-Finalists in the 2015 Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase. They have performed with many local and regional bands over the last three years.

On June 1, 2016 the band released a 7” vinyl record called Heaven 7. The album was recorded at “Welcome to 1977 Studios” in Nashville. The new songs were recorded direct to disc live in January 2015. The 7inch is available at and at, Dogtown Sound, Been Around Records, Arkansas Record and CD exchange, and live shows. The new songs will soon be available worldwide on digital sites such as: Spotify, iTunes, CDbaby, Shazam, and more. Purchase of the vinyl is only $5 and you’ll get two bonus songs with a download code card within the album sleeve or you may download the 4 songs digitally for only $2. The limited edition 7” is on a beautiful psychedelic, marbleized, multicolored vinyl.

Cover art by Tommy Tanner. Back art by Jerry Colburn. Kathy Lawson took the insert photograph. Heaven 7 was produced by Mathew Fulper-Smith and THE CASUAL PLEASURES. Engineered by Chris Mara and lathe cut by Cameron Henry.

Musicians on the Heaven 7 include: Nathan Houser (lead vox, keys, lyrics), Jesse Lawson (gtr/vox), Melanie King (keys, vox, electric ukulele), Brad Birge (bass), Tommy Tanner (drums), and Matt Schatz (sax). Schatz still plays sax at occasional live shows.

Live band: Nathan Houser is also in Ezra Lbs (Thick Syrup/Fast Weapons Records). Jesse Lawson played in The Smokes. Brad Birge is in Good Foot, That Arkansas Weather, and The Matt Treadway Jazz Project. Shayne Gray is in Techno-Squid Eats Parliament (Ardent Records/Philips/Polygram) and The Alpha Ray (Thick Syrup Records). He’s also been in Dangerous Idiots (Mostar Records, UK), and Glittercore. His first band - Victory Garden - included Ben Nichols of Lucero.

The band’s current plans are to do weekend tours in Little Rock, Conway, Hot Springs, Fayetteville, Russellville, and Memphis with a focus on continued recording. They are starting to build an underground following and continue to evolve their live shows into an "Event" a audio-visual love pit.

For THE CASUAL PLEASURES booking, interviews, live acoustic radio sessions, in-stores, and more please contact Shayne Gray at 501-231-8516 or at

“I don't know much about these guys but they do share a member of Ezra Lbs (Thick Syrup/Fast Weapons Records). Great, all post-punk energy and Casio riffs." -Will Sephenson (The Arkansas Times)

"I like it. Very different but reminesent of 70s punk. Cool production and sonics. Let me know when y'all play Memphis."- Jody Stephens (Ardent Studios, drummer of Big Star, and Those Pretty Wrongs).

“I love the packing of the new record and the spiral colored vinyl is really cool.” - John (Owner of Been Around Records in Little Rock, Arkansas)

“Excellent group (dare I say…supergroup). The Casual Pleasures mixes a swirling concoction of twisted pop that pushes the boundaries of what’s catchy and fun. Houser’s lead vocals propel the songs, sometimes crooning, sometimes howling over interplaying keyboard and guitar riffs accented by multi-part harmonies, buzzing synths atop energetic drumming and melodic bass lines. Sometimes it felt a bit like a drunk and gleeful romp through a carnival, other times like lounging on a sun-soaked island, not caring that your face is melting off. They recklessly walk the line between pop and ‘not-pop’ with little regard for conventions but with a real knack for finding grooves and earworms along the way. Most importantly, though, they pass the fun test with flying colors. There’s a lot of ‘psychedelic’ or ‘experimental’ stuff going on here but the underlying force driving all of what’s going on is ‘play’ in the truest sense, with musicians enjoying themselves as they do their thing and bring the crowd along with them...Check out one of their upcoming shows.” - James Szenher (Rock Candy)