—by The Aquarian Weekly, May 24, 2016
Start At The End is back again this month at NYC’s oldest rock club The Bitter End in New York City on May 25. The bands chosen to play are local ones that deserve a chance at creating more buzz and getting their names out there. This month’s lineup is made up of Wyland, Experiment 34, Rob Jennings, Above The Moon, and Jared Dylan.
We recently caught up with Above The Moon to talk about their background, sound, latest release, and more! Check it out below:
How long have you been a band and how did you get started?
We’re actually creeping up on one year together—about 11 months! The band was formed pretty organically—Kate, James and Shawn found each other on Craigslist—drums were the last piece of the puzzle, so Shawn called his friend John and that was that.
Why did you choose your band name?
We went back and forth on names for a while, but ultimately needed to pick something because we were in the studio recording our EP and couldn’t settle on anything. We have a song called “Moon” that we like a lot and thought of ways we might be able to weave that word in somehow. Under The Moon (as a name) sounded too predictable, so we went with Above The Moon.
How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard you before?
We definitely fall into the alt rock category. Most of our songs have a raw feel, but there’s some indie-pop edge mixed in there as well. We’ve heard from listeners and fans that we sound like Gaslight Anthem (with female vocals), Best Coast and Jimmy Eat World, to name a few.
What was your latest release of music and can you talk about that for a bit?
Well first off, thank you for taking notice in us and giving the band an awesome write-up a few months ago in Maria’s Local Radar section of the publication. Our recent and only recorded music so far is a four-song EP that we laid down back in December 2015. Once we got together as a band, we wrote and rehearsed for months to make sure we nailed four songs that would give us an identity.
Does one person write the lyrics or is it a collective effort?
The whole band contributes to the arrangement, structure and feel of each song. Sometimes James and Kate will talk about the concept of what they want a song to be about, but Kate is the driving force behind most of the lyrics—from writing them to expressing them in our live performances.
What is your recording process like?
The recording process for us starts months before we get into the studio. We typically demo the songs for a bit to try different arrangements and listen back with a clear head before we step foot in the studio. While we’ve only recorded one EP, we try to map out every piece of a song so when we get into the studio and the clock starts running, we are working at an efficient pace that will produce the best product possible. For our EP, we tracked all rhythm live—drums, bass and rhythm guitar, and after that we laid down leads and vocals.
What are current projects you are working on? (Tour pans? New music?)
Getting these new songs out is our main goal right now. We plan on recording our second EP this summer with Rob Freeman of Hidden In Plain View. For this one we want to add more layers to give the songs a slightly bigger sound. Other than that we’re looking to keep playing and building our audience locally.
What are your thoughts about this Start At The End A New Sound Series event?
We’re really looking forward to being a part of this showcase! The Aquarian has always been supportive of local music as well as national acts and we’re honored to have been invited to play with some other great artists from the Garden State.
Have you played with any of the other acts before that are part of this lineup?
We haven’t! But we’ve been talking with our friends in Wyland for a bit about getting some shows together and it’s great that we both found our way on this bill. We can’t wait to checkout all the bands playing, though. It should be a great night of music.
What are your goals for the future as a band?
Right now our focus is on continuing to play shows throughout NJ/NYC/Philly and meet other likeminded musicians. The dream for all of us is to do this professionally, but we’re also realistic. We all have day jobs and responsibilities, but keep the dream alive by continually playing out and creating. We all take the band and the music seriously and are all riding this wave and seeing where it takes us!
Above The Moon will be appearing at this month’s Start At The End showcase in New York City on May 25. For more on the band, go to abovethemoonmusic.com, and for more on the event, go to facebook.com/startattheend.