The Ross Sea Party: The Ross Sea Party is a typically unusual Los Angeles family. Five friends who wanted to transcend the disconnected and nonsensical nature of life in the city and create something consequential, the band built a home with hollow-body guitars, well-tuned drums, and a glockenspiel.
Like its namesake, a little known yet heroic wing of Ernest Shackleton's famed 1914 Trans-Antarctic Expedition, the band can be characterized by their easy navigation across an ever-changing atmosphere. Raised on everything from the idiosyncratic guitar work of Neil Young and the irreverent pop of The Talking Heads to contemporaries Delta Spirit, Arcade Fire and The Dodos, the Ross Sea Party is constantly inspired. While paying homage to their influences, the band has simultaneously managed to create an unmistakable and unique sound. Characterized by spacious instrumentation and singer Brady Erickson's unique voice atop energetic and pervasive rhythms, the songs remain simple, catchy and melodic at their core.
Erickson began The RSP in 2009 with fellow LA scene veterans Michael Baumer on drums and multi-instrumentalist Will VanderWyden, adding Atlanta transplant Mark Tillman on guitar and LA native Jacquelyn Thropay on keyboards and glockenspiel the following year.
Dylan Trees: Dylan Trees, a dreamy Los Angeles-based folk-psych-pop band, is a collective of like minded musicians building around the songs of London born singer-songwriter Jeremy Simon and New York chanteuse Monica Olive. With intertwining vocals by the two, they offer beautifully textured and meticulous arrangements, while weaving synth and guitar dreamscapes around the songs. It sounds both ancient and modern. The bands new EP “Three Times of the Day” (Mother West) was released digitally in February of 2012 and the Vinyl EP version comes out on May 1st. Recorded in NYC and Los Angeles and produced by Charles Newman (The Magnetic Fields, Gospel Music, Soko), the songs are part of a collection derived from the album Victoryville to be released later this year. A video for the title track “Three Times of the Day” can be seen online (http://vimeo.com/33292534) and gives a glimpse into the world of Dylan Trees. The band will be touring the northwest in support of the release in May with shows around the Los Angeles area throughout the summer. In 2011 the band contributed a track to Beat LA: A Benefit for Haiti alongside other LA bands No Age, Crystal Antlers and Best Coast. Their music has also been used in the feature film “Fling”, and the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival winning film “The Dungeon Master”. The band has played numerous shows in Los Angeles, including a headlining slot at Satellite this past February. They’ve played SXSW, CMJ as well as shows in San Francisco, London and Paris. Plans for an east coast fall tour are currently in the works.
The Breakups: Most bands end with a breakup, but indie pop band, the breakups, started that way. The year was 2007, and Jake Gideon had just been dumped by his long-time girlfriend. As if that wasn't emotionally traumatic enough, the co-founding member of Gideon's previous band made a sudden decision to move to Virginia after they had played only one show.
The way Gideon saw it, there were two options: crawl under a rock and never reemerge, or form the band he'd always wanted and call it the breakups to poke fun at the woeful circumstances that surrounded the group's inception. After filling out the lineup with PHil Shrut on drums, James Williams on keyboards, Nik Ahistam on guitar, and Tim Lee on bass, the band played its first show at the Fake Gallery in Silver Lake on July 12th, 2007.
It was a fruitful time for the east-side music scene in L.A., and before long the breakups were gigging consistently at venues like Spaceland, The Echo, Silverlake Lounge, Mr. T's Bowl, and Pehrspace, allying themselves with several like-minded bands along the way. It was a tight-knit community of talented musicians and artists who all supported each other by attending shows, trading records, juggling band members, and encouraging each other with a little friendly competition.
On Valentine's Day of 2008, the breakups released the eat your heart out ep to positive reviews. the EP reached #66 on the CMJ Top 200, with 78 Top 30 chartings at radio stations around the country, including 29 in the Top 10. Five out of the six songs on the EP earned TV or film placements, and Nic Harcourt made the song "after the fact" his Daily Connections on KCSN in Los Angeles.
Gideon continued to develop his voice as a songwriter and the sound of te band evolved and matured. The fruits of that evolution are showcased on their first full length album, running jumping falling shouting, due for release on February 14th. The 12-song LP has a clarity and confidence that conjures hints of Wilco, The Shins, The New Pornographers, and Elliott Smith, while maintaining a strong identity of its own.