The Driver Era
Imagine a Queen tribute band that moonlights playing original EDM music with members of the Moody Blues, and that’s the Driver Era. The large and lush soundscapes created by Ross and Rocky Lynch are pastoral and nearly orchestral, but all BPM’d out and RPM’d up, grinded to a dirty, grungy point with an alt-rock sharpener. Ross arrived on the music scene with a measure of fame already established from his career as an actor, being best known as one of the title characters on the Disney Channel’s Austin & Ally. Rocky has dabbled in acting too, as have siblings Ryker and Rydel, with all four originally playing in the same group, known as R5. Oddly, most online traces of their previous incarnation as R5 have been systematically converted to erase that band’s history in favor of the new project, particularly on Twitter and Instagram.
Ross and Rocky formed their Driver Era duo last year, posting an online single called “Preacher Man” that clearly reflects the inspirations they readily admit, mainly Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa. It wouldn’t be a stretch to imagine a casual listener mistaking the Driver Era for either of those acts, although, to be fair, the brothers have had less than a year to distill a more distinct sound, with just a handful of singles and one video to their credit so far. “Preacher Man” has proven so successful that there are already remixes available, and both “Afterglow” and “Low” have appeared in the upper reaches of the iTunes chart. There’s an album reportedly in the works that will most likely be previewed at least in part when they take the Irenic stage on March 30.