Jeff Smith 2 p.m., Dec. 12
Sound description: '80s, new-wave pop, and electronica, with films and art shows worked into live performances.
RIYL: New Order, the Smiths
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- Website · Aug. 3, 2007
- Musician Interviews · Nov. 24, 2004
Ex-Band Members: Mark, Electronics, Keyboards
Influences: New Order, the Smiths, Belle and Sebastian, Pet Shop Boys, Anything Box
The one-person band brings to mind images of a bass drum strapped to the chest, cymbals hooked to the knees, an accordion slung to the side, and a harmonica harnessed in front of the mouth. These days, with MIDI synthesizers and computers running sequencing programs, it's a tad easier for the one-person acts to hold their own.
In the 1980s, the "thing" was two-man bands like Soft Cell, Bronski Beat, and the Pet Shop Boys: someone on the electronic instruments, the other singing. Following this form, Earnest Rapture began as a two-person project in 1997 with college friends Cara Mia and Mark, hailing from New Jersey with plenty of synthesizers but no computer. They began work on what would be their first album, Yesterday's Lemons, but Mark, according to Mia, committed suicide before the album was finished. She completed the project in her partner's wake and continued solo.
Why the move to San Diego? "Because the company I work for relocated here," says Cara. "I also publish an online multimedia magazine with contributors from around the world."
Retro-'80s synth-pop is what Earnest Rapture is all about -- melodic, poetic, somewhat dark but always danceable -- an homage to the digitized music culture of a past decade. The band's equipment includes Digital Performer, Reason [software], Motu 828, Roland Juno 106, Rhode NT 2, dual processor G4 for recording/engineering, G3 iBook for driving visual projections, and G4 iBook for driving the rest of the live set.
-- "Lists," 11-24-04