Tag Archives: Club Retro

Thee Atlantic have a new self-titled EP

Yuba City-based indie/pop/rock group Thee Atlantic have a new self-titled EP they are releasing at Club Retro on Saturday, March 12. It’s six tracks and was recorded at Mayhemness Studios with Bob Swanson here in Sacramento. Also on the Retro bill is The Paper Melody, another impressive band from the Yuba City/Marysville area that has a new EP, The Nightmare Academy, out soon, plus a really cool new music video for the title track online now. There are a lot of good bands that aren’t only playing in and around Midtown. Remember that, oh dear Submerge readers!

Grenade Jumper has a new EP: Still Not Goin’ Home

Granite Bay pop-punkers Grenade Jumper are having a CD release show for their new EP Still Not Goin’ Home on Dec. 19, 2010 at Club Retro. The single “She Let You In” has been online for a couple months, along with a goofy classroom setting music video. Their music is super catchy (think New Found Glory, A Day to Remember, etc.) and they seem like funny dudes, so it’s tough not to like them. The release show, which is also Retro’s Fourth Annual Christmas Show, will also feature performances from Crimson Sky, Body Electric, Streetlight Fire, Wings of Innocence and Serenade the Radio. It’s $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Doors open at 6 p.m. and all ages are welcome. For more information on Grenade Jumper and to hear some tunes, visit www.myspace.com/grenadejumpermusic.

The Secretions

Showing No Signs of Slowing

Sacramento Punk Legends The Secretions Are Set to Release New Record

The year was 1991. The grunge movement, in all its flannel glory, had fully engulfed the country thanks to bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam; the Governator was just the Terminator in Terminator 2: Judgment Day; Will Smith was just the Fresh Prince in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air; and two young punk rockers attending Sacramento State, Mickie Rat and Danny Secretion, would meet and form a band. “I would have to walk through the University Union and I would get my coffee and go to class and I would always see this guy wearing all black no matter how hot it was,” Danny recalls of Mickie Rat during a recent conversation outside Benny’s Bar and Grill. “Long-sleeve black shirt, black pants and motorcycle boots with these big metal plates on the front and he had kind of a Mohawk devil-lock. It was pretty awesome.”

Mickie was aware of his intimidating appearance and even admits that he was known as the “scary punk guy” around campus. The two would see each other often, but never really spoke until their paths crossed one afternoon under dreary circumstances. “We actually started talking at a funeral,” says Mickie, who at this point had already started a band. “Our original guitarist was the program director for the student-run radio and he passed away. I had seen [Danny] in the studio; we had shows near each other. We didn’t even really start talking until then,” says Mickie.

One thing led to another, Danny was invited to jam and The Secretions were born. “We still have cassette tapes of those practices and how we started every song with, ‘One, two, three, four!'” Danny says.”

The two recall that in those first days of practice, ending the songs in sync was not as easy as starting them. “Usually we would start out the song together but the ending would always end up disintegrating,” remembers Danny. “The guitar would stop, then the bass, then the drummer would just keep playing.”

Fast-forward 18 years and the two are still making punk rock music together. “We don’t know how to do anything else,” says Danny. “I think the thing that’s really helped attribute to us not throwing in the towel is coming to grips with the fact that we’re not going to be huge and famous.”

Money and fame aside, The Secretions are a very successful band. They’ve toured the country many times and released a handful of records, but more importantly, they’re great friends who love playing music together. “My goal was to always be in a band with friends,” says Mickie. “That’s pretty much what it’s always been about for me. I’ve been lucky enough to do that. I mean, some people are like, ‘Oh I’ll hire a bunch of guys to play my music.’ That’s never worked for me.”

What has worked for The Secretions for nearly two decades now is booking smart tours: Gigging every other month as opposed to every weekend to avoid over-saturating the market; recording and releasing high energy, addictive punk rock records; and connecting with their dedicated fans, appropriately dubbed Secretins, more deeply than most groups these days. The band—which currently consists of Mickie Rat (bass, vocals), Danny Secretion (drums, vocals) and Paul Filthy (guitar, vocals)—truly has withstood the test of time. With a new record, entitled GREASYHOTMEATCHEEZY, due out in July, a slew of tour dates including two appearances at the Insubordination Fest in Baltimore, Md. in late June, two Sacramento release shows (July 3 at the Blue Lamp and July 20 at the Boardwalk) and a two-week West Coast run with The Bugs, they are not showing any signs of slowing.

Where did the name GREASYHOTMEATCHEEZY come from?
Mickie Rat: Paul’s girlfriend.
Danny Secretion: We were driving to Fresno to play a show; it was like a Friday night so we had all just gotten off work, went home, cleaned up, drove around and picked up everyone. We pulled over to get some gas and something to eat and I just asked, “What do you guys feel like eating?” And she just blurted out, “Greasy, hot, meat, cheesy!” It was just one of those things. On the inside of our van there is just Sharpie tags all over and written up there is “GREASYHOTMEATCHEEZY” and we just circled it and were like, “That’s a great album.”
MR: It’s a running joke, somebody will say something disgusting and you’ll be like, “Oh that’s what our next album is going to be called.” She also kind of did that to goof on me because I’m a vegetarian and I’m allergic to dairy so she was like, “Hm, what are all the things you can’t eat?”
DS: Yeah, Mickie can’t eat too many things that are meaty or cheesy.
MR: But I like hot things and greasy things.

What else can you tell me about the record? How does it compare to past releases musically and lyrically?
DS: Musically I think it’s on par with everything else that we’ve done, it’s nothing too complicated.
MR: I think a lot of people are shocked because I’m more singing than yelling. There’s some different songs. Usually if I write a pop-y song that sounds kind of smoother and I sing kind of pretty on it, I’ll save it and not put it on the album. I’m getting to the age where you just stop giving a shit. A lot of those songs I didn’t want on the album, but then I was like, “Eh, what the fuck do I got to lose? Let’s just put them out there.” The opening track is like three-and-a-half minutes long, which is like the longest song I’ve ever written.

Yeah, that’s like three normal Secretions songs!
MR: Usually I write stuff that’s a minute-15, that’s like my average song length. I kind of wanted to write this rockin’ Joan Jett and the Blackhearts kind of song.
DS: It’s a fun song. That was the big risk that we took was putting a song that was so different from the others at the beginning.
MR: Yeah I really didn’t want to put it first either but eventually they convinced me.
DS: We were just like, “No, this one has to start it.” It’s one of those things where it’s going to make people listen to it. The next song is just classic punk all the way through.
MR: There’s some different kind of stuff on this one.
DS: It’s just a fun album. We’ve got the songs pretty much telling off certain people. That’s always been what we do, just kind of poking fun at people.
MR: It’s what we do best: pissed off punk rock.

You’re doing a listening party at Capitol Dawg. Whose idea was that?
DS: That was Mickie’s idea.
MR: It’s one of my favorite places to eat. I always hang out and talk to the owner. My girlfriend and I actually went there for the first couple of weeks and nagged the hell out of him to get garlic fries because he didn’t have them yet.

So I have you to thank for my stinky breath after I eat those, eh?
DS: The reason why he didn’t have them was really cool. He didn’t want to do garlic fries, because Jack’s next door had garlic fries and he didn’t want to disrespect them.
MR: But Jack’s has terrible fries, the only reason they are good is if they put garlic on them. A fry must stand alone, by itself, before you put anything on it. I am a total fry aficionado. If a fry doesn’t taste good with nothing on it then I don’t want to eat it.

You guys have a widely renown connection with your fans, a listening party seems like a good way to keep that strong. Have you done anything like this before?
DS: We did it last year at the Javalounge. I think prior to that it had been much more informal, maybe just inviting friends over to our house to get drunk and play our new CD. For Faster Than the Speed of Drunk we did something a little more formal, we had an actual listening party where we told everyone to come on over to the Javalounge and we played the CD. This year we thought about doing it again and Mickie had the idea of doing it at Capitol Dawg.
MR: We’re going to have a special hot dog recipe for the evening; it’s going to be the “Greasy, hot, meat, cheesy.” I somehow convinced the owner to do the 88-cent Pabst long necks for that night. He usually only does that on Mondays, but he’s agreed to extend it to a Thursday.
DS: Oh, that could be bad news for us!

What is this Insubordination Fest all about? Are you pumped to be a part of it?
DS: It’s a big festival, I think this is the third one; it’s basically Lookout Records mid-’90s: bands like the Mr. T Experience, The Queers and The Parasites. They just have this huge festival with all these pop-punk bands back East.
MR: It’s put on by Insubordination Records.
DS: This year the surviving members of The Dead Milkmen are going to reunite and play. Lots of other huge bands will be there. We play on the Friday night just as the Secretions. Then on Saturday we’re backing Wimpy Rutherford, who is the original singer for the Queers, so we’re going to be doing like all the old Queers songs.

That seems like kind of a big deal for you guys!
MR: It’s a huge deal.
DS: It was one of those things where I was talking to Wimpy about the possibility of him playing and us backing him up. I let the guys know, and Mickie didn’t want to get his hopes up.
MR: I was like, “I’m not going to hold my breath.”
DS: Then when we finally got the OK when Wimpy was given a slot and he said, “I want you to be my backing band, learn the songs,” then I let the guys know.

You guys recently did a video shoot for the song “Back in the Day Punk.” Will it include footage from your recent Club Retro show?
DS: Yes, we worked with our friend Rob Young, aka Rob Fatal. He’s a local DJ here in town. He’s an awesome filmmaker, and he’s absolutely punk rock. He’s very fast about how he films things; he’ll have you do everything about five times until he gets what he thinks is just right and then moves on to the next thing. We filmed the first part during the day at our friend Tom from the No-Goodniks’ house and that was a good time. Then we played at Club Retro later on that night and we played the song three or four times. And he just filmed the kids and filmed us. If you want to get people to really go crazy during your set, put a camera right in their faces. Everyone wanted to be on camera for that. We had a trampoline on-stage for people to jump out into the crowd.
MR: It was for stage diving assistance. In full disclosure, we stole the idea from Sloppy Seconds. It looked like fun.
DS: The first kid to do it was this kid named Tony Silva; he’s from Woodland, Calif. Mickie wrote a song about this kid because he’s from Woodland but he takes the bus, because he doesn’t have his drivers license yet, to Sacramento to go see punk shows. So all these kids complain about, “There’s nothing to do, this scene sucks.” And you got this kid taking the bus to pay a cover to go see a punk rock show.

What’s the song called that you wrote about him?
MR: It’s called “Tony Silva Rides the Bus.” It’s on our new record. He’s a really nice guy, but he’s kind of a klutz and always ends up hurting himself, you know the bad luck stuff always happens to him.
DS: Well, he was the first one to use the trampoline. I motioned to him with my head as I was playing the drums like, “Tony, go!” So he runs offstage full force, just jumps on the trampoline, soars into the air and the crowd parts like the Red Sea. He had gotten so far out he didn’t have the time to level out so he could land feet first, so he pretty much did a big elbow drop on the ground. It was captured on video by Rob and we’ll see if it makes it in the video or not.
MR: After our set he comes up to us and was like, “Yeah it kind of hurt, but I got right back up because I didn’t want anyone to think I was a pussy!”
DS: If anyone deserves a song, it’s Tony. I don’t know if we’re going to be bringing the trampoline to the Boardwalk though, because that’s a pretty tall stage.

The Secreations interview

Preview The Secretions new record, GREASYHOTMEETCHEEZY, at Capitol Dawg on July 2. Catch them live at the Blue Lamp on July 3 and at the Boardwalk on July 20. For more information visit myspace.com/secretions or secretinlifeline.blogspot.com

Don’t Forget to Brag


The Sweet Brag Tour w/ The Devil Wears Prada, A Day to Remember, Sky Eats Airplane, Emarosa
Club Retro, Orangevale | April 19, 2009
Words and Photos By Russsell Wonsley

Club Retro has not seen or felt such a concert for sometime. Before the show, a line of kids wrapped around the building and then continued onto the back of the church’s property. All of them to soon witness the chaos that would take place within the walls of the venue. Crammed against the newly added barriers, the kids waited for the show to begin.

There was almost a nervous chatter among the crowd of people. No one knew what to expect of such a dream team lineup the Sweet Brag Tour had to offer. Suddenly the lights dimmed, and the men of Emarosa took the stage. Leading the group with his recognizable voice, Jonny Craig started off the show with a great quality performance. Warming the crowd with songs such as “The Past Should Stay Dead” and leaving them wanting more with the song “Set It Off Like Napalm.”

Next to take the stage was the electronic-powered band Sky Eats Airplane. The band brought with them more of a hardcore sound that would continue into the rest of the night. With high stage jumps, Jerry Roush got the kids to start moving within the depths of the pit.


A Day to Remember were next to the stage for an anticipated performance.
They dropped their third album (and fourth overall) with Victory Records, Homesick, just about a month ago. It seemed as though the crowd had already caught on to the many gang vocals that the record contained. With beach balls flying into the crowd, ADTR took the stage playing the first song off the new album “The Downfall of Us All.” Jeremy McKinnon (vocalist) took control of Club Retro with his catchy lyrics and overwhelming stage presence. In addition to new material, the band pleased the crowd with classic hits such as “A Plot to Bomb the Panhandler” and “Why Walk on Water When We Have Boats.” Nearing the end of their set, Club Retro had become a sauna of sweaty teenagers.

Exhausted from what ADTR had just thrown down, the bustle of crew members preparing the stage for what everyone had gathered for beckoned the audience to reach back for more energy.



It looked as though the new label has been taking care of The Devil Wears Prada, as the stage was littered with professional lighting. The set opened with just purple ultra violent lights that casted an almost solid column of light up into the ceiling. The scene was chilling, as the battle was about to break out between good and evil.

It all began out of nowhere. The Devil Wears Prada took the stage and without wasting a second Mike Hranica pulsed the crowd with his heroic growls; he held the energy of the stage in the center. To his left fellow gutarist Jeremy DePoyster sweetened the songs with his soft harmonizing choruses. You could feel the whole band in tune with one another as they pummeled the venue with breakdowns and grueling guitar riffs. Playing every hit song from both records, the band even treated Club Retro to a new song from their upcoming album With Roots Above and Branches Below titled “Dez Moines.” Fans stretched out to the stage hoping that this would bring them closer to the madness.


Also check out our interview with The Devil Wears Prada

The Devil Wears Prada interview

The Devil Wears Prada Deepens Its Roots

The Devil You Know

Two nights in New York City have taken its toll on Jeremy DePoyster. America’s largest city is a lot to take in for new visitors and longtime residents alike, but for a member of a band whose star is on the rise, New York’s hectic pace can reach exhausting levels. DePoyster, guitarist/vocalist for Dayton, Ohio’s The Devil Wears Prada, has been shuffled from meet-and-greets to photo shoots to interviews, not to mention playing two shows at The Fillmore at Irving Plaza, which he says were “probably the craziest New York shows we’ve had.” DePoyster doesn’t mind all the fuss, though.
“I’d still take this over any other job,” he says through intermittent yawns, early in the morning after the band’s second show.

The Devil Wears Prada won’t have much time to rest in the coming months. As of this writing, the band’s latest album, With Roots Above and Branches Below, is just a month away from release. Recently, the band leaked a song, “Dez Moines” onto their Myspace page. In less than a month since posting, the song has already received close to 1.8 million plays, whetting fans’ appetites for the new material. DePoyster says the song is a good bridge to The Devil Wears Prada’s new songs as it closely resembles the sound of the tracks on the band’s previous effort, Plagues.

“The further we get into the tour, it seems like the more the kids are into that song,” DePoyster says of fan response to the new track live. “I don’t know if it’s getting more popular on Myspace or something like that, but it seems like the further we get into the tour, the more positive the response is to that song.”

Though DePoyster describes some of the songs on With Roots“¦ as having a Plagues-ish feel, he also believes the album is more mature and sees the band branching out (pun intended) in new directions. For example, With Roots”¦ marks the first time the metal-core group has opted to write songs in a tuning other than drop-D, dialing their tuning as low as drop-B for some songs.

“I really felt like we’d done two CDs in the same thing, and I really didn’t want all the choruses and chord progressions to sound the same as the last two records,” he says of the decision to drop down. “I didn’t want to write the same album again I guess.”

The band will be touring the country headlining the Sweet Brag Tour with A Day to Remember, Sky Eats Airplane and Emarosa until May 1, just four days before the album hits shelves; after that, they will fly to Russia for a couple shows, before returning to the states to join this summer’s Vans Warped Tour—not bad for a band barely 4 years old. Sacramento-area fans will be able to catch the Sweet Brag Tour when it rolls through Orangevale’s Club Retro on April 19, 2009. The Devil Wears Prada will once again visit Sacramento on Aug. 21, 2009 when the Vans Warped Tour comes to town.

Submerge rustled DePoyster out of bed for the following interview.

What did tuning lower do for your songwriting?
We could still write our same style and still do our same thing, but it had a different feel to it, just because we’re not used to playing in that tuning. Playing our same style of things and our same style of writing in a different tuning, it added a different feel to even the singing parts and everything like that. It was heavier.

Do you think it opened you up creatively?
Yeah, definitely.

Was there a particular song that was really benefited by using the lower tones?
There were two songs, I’d say, “Assistant to the Regional Manager” and “Wapakalypse,” that would have suffered if they weren’t in that lower tuning because of the style of the riffs and stuff like that. They were definitely helped by being in that lower tuning. There was this other song that we did that had this really epic singing part at the end of it that I thought was cool just because it was in a different tuning with different chords than we would normally play. I could do some different stuff with it, and if we had done 10 or 11 more songs in drop-D, it would have just been too monotonous. It would have been just like Plagues.

I read a quote by someone in the band that said the new album is “more mechanical” than what you’ve released before. Would you agree with that?
I don’t know who said that. I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s more mechanical. Maybe they meant better structured because I think we’ve become better songwriters together than our last two records. Plagues was a big step forward in our songwriting, but I think this one even more so. The songs flow better through out. Other than going into some weird tempos and things like that. We’ve done that before, and that was cool, but it’s not really what we want to do now. We want to write better songs and not just breakdowns and big metal riffs and stuff like that. I think it [With Roots”¦] is easier to listen to and it’s more catchy because they flow so well all the way through. My favorite songs on the last record were songs like “HTML”¦” and “Hey John”¦” and stuff like that, because they flowed pretty fluidly throughout the song. We tried to do that with all the songs on this record.

So it’s less about seeing how much you could cram into one song than it is making the songs cleaner?
Yeah, exactly, and I think we were a lot more apt to, like, if it didn’t make sense in the context of the song, we would just scrap it. As opposed to before, we would be like, “What should we play here, this weird little thing? Yeah, let’s do that. Why not?” This time we were stricter on what made the cut and what didn’t.

I was reading the lyrics for “Dez Moines,” and one of the lines goes, “Profit zero, achievement zero.” I know the band’s name deals with materialism, and that seems to work into that song in particular, as well as being a recurring theme within the band. Do you see materialism as one of the biggest problems this generation has to overcome?
I don’t even know if it’s necessarily this generation. It’s just one of those things where”¦well, it’s hard to say. As a Christian band, we’re working for God first. I know myself, in my own personal life, it’s easy to get wrapped up in other things, whether it’s guitars or video games. I collect DVDs and stuff like that, but none of that stuff really matters in the end of it, by any perspective. It’s not important. It’s just something that’s always been important to us, and Mike [Hranica, vocals] really dove into that again lyrically.

Given what you just said, are any of the songs on the new record inspired by the current financial situation? What’s your take on that?
Reading through the lyrics, I wouldn’t say any of the songs are inspired by the financial situation. We haven’t really talked or thought about that whole business too much. I know we have one political song, but it’s a little bit different than that. It’s obviously a scary time for everybody. Even before all this crap happened, it’s been really hard to sell records, because everyone downloads, and the labels are suffering, and the bands aren’t selling as many records. Someone’s record just came out, I don’t know, Kelly Clarkson or something, and it only sold 250,000 copies the first week, which is insane that she would only do that many, where if it was three years ago, she would have done a million or something. It hasn’t really affected us, because we still have a lot of people coming to shows. We’re really lucky in that. Obviously, it sucks. Industries are crashing—the auto industry and all that stuff—and that’s not cool.

You’re headed out on the Warped Tour, and I guess it’s a nature of the beast, but there’s a lot of marketing that goes on during the tour, in the tents between the stages, does the commercial aspect of the tour bother you at all?
Not really. We’re not a punk rock band or anything. It doesn’t really matter to me, I guess. I come from a different background. I used to go to Warped Tour when it was in the new shape of things—Fall Out Boy and all those bands—and I was really into it. I was telling someone the other day that Kevin Lyman is a genius, and he’s done a really good job of keeping the tour current. He could have kept it all old punk bands just to please people and appease people, but he hasn’t really done that. He still brings back those bands every year, but he also brings in a lot of the new things. We didn’t know what to expect going into it. We thought it was either a pop-punk tour or a punk rock tour, but we went in on the first day and had a huge crowd and that happened the entire tour—the craziest shows we ever played. He does a really good job of building a broad package that still does really well.

You already mentioned that you and the members of the band have strong Christian beliefs, but many bands in the metal genre have a decidedly anti-Christian message. Did you listen to a lot of metal growing up, and why did you choose this form of expression?

Yeah, I definitely listened to a lot of metal growing up—and even more so now. I love Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Slayer, all that good stuff. Musically, I love those bands. I don’t necessarily agree with what they say, but I can appreciate the music. I think the same thing applies to us. I mean, obviously we’re a Christian band, but we’re not preaching. We’re not shoving things down people’s throats. If they do come from a metal background, and they’re really anti-Christian or whatever, I still think they can find something in the music that they like.
Devil Wears Prada interview

Also read The Devil Wears Prada at Club Retro in Orangevale on April 19

Early States Sound Off on Early Successes

Up, Up And Away

If Early States ought to have been intimidated by the traditionally aggressive cauldron of hardcore and metal bands bubbling out of the greater Sacramento area, they seem not to have noticed. In fact, they seem downright indifferent to the fabled demographic of their immediate proximity; a place where bands like Tera Melos shattered the glass ceilings of post-punk with dizzying mathematical permutations and broken instruments; a place where spatial metal heavyweights Deftones and Far ignited the tinder of disenfranchised Central Valley denizens and went knock, knock, knockin’ on Billboard‘s door; a place where the sheer strip-mallian essence floats so pungently in the humid troposphere, you’re damn near required to bleed Orange Julius should you be so unfortunate as to be shanked in the citywide food court. It’s this kind of focused apathy that seems to be setting the band apart from its peers in the local music scene, and it’s definitely getting it noticed outside of it as well.

Early States is fronted by 18-year-old Zack Gray. His affluence in songwriting has yielded the band (also including Shaun O’Brien, 20, on guitar and keyboard; Brandon Lee, 22, on drums; with recent additions Tom Hatch, 18, on bass; and Nick Silva, 18, on lead guitar) a fluffy bed of uber-pop melodicism and expansive indie-rock pomp.

“We weren’t apprehensive,” says Gray with regard to the divisiveness of the band’s sound. “If anything we looked forward to introducing people to something new. We want to be one of the bands that takes [the scene] in a new direction.”

While the band boasts an average age of 19, their focus remains steadfastly on the progression of their still fledgling career. Having just finished recording their debut EP Powerlines, Early States is forging ahead with not only their CD release show at Club Retro, but also with the spoils of their headway with major Los Angeles-based music licensing firm Immediate Music. The band was recently signed a licensing contract with the company, who is responsible for the composing and licensing of music cues and pieces for television and in the promotional campaigns of 70 to 80 percent of the top 50 highest-grossing films seeping out of Hollywood’s glistening underbelly, including the entire Harry Potter series, the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and even ­Spider-man. Not a bad spot to be for a band that only formed about a year ago.

“Being the first band to sign with Immediate Music hasn’t changed our direction. It has only made us more driven and ambitious,” notes Gray. “We’re honored that a company as prestigious as I.M. wants to work with us. It’s definitely some great validation.”

The band is planning on shopping their music to proper record labels come January 2009, and figures to utilize the time in the interim to “tighten up any loose screws” and to focus on the release of their EP.

Powerlines was officially release at the Nov. 21 CD release show, but the album hit Purevolume a week prior for free (with the band on the front page), and has made its way on over to music Mecca iTunes, then Amazon, then to basically wherever music is sold on the wild wild Web. Additionally, the band has acquired an endorsement from Dickies clothing.

“Our band is our number one priority and we look forward to being able to give it our full, undivided attention,” explains Gray. And the drive with which he’s espoused his songwriting couldn’t cut closer to the quick of the proverbial angst-loaded post-grad.

Powerlines ushers in atmospheric nodes in all the right places, begging here and there for a unique thread to tether, but still maintains an unmistakable knack for hook-y transitions and guitar-smothered verve. Gray’s adolescent renderings of universal themes such as “love and conflict, to wanting to get away, to finding happiness in yourself instead of looking for it in other people,” while prudent, don’t belie the vastness of his visionary palate.

“Although those are the main themes that can be found on Powerlines, I really enjoy listening to people’s interpretations of what they think the songs are about and how they relate them to their own life,” says Gray.

Early States are hoping to tour in Spring 2009, but will be working on new material and playing local and regional venues to begin the arduous task of getting their name plastered in the fertile minds of show goers; more importantly, the quintet has already eschewed the reticence of the young band syndrome, and expects nothing but great things in the future.

“We believe that we’re a very hard working band, especially for our age,” says Gray. “We think we share the same focus as the bands we look up to and aspire to be like.”