Santa Cruz Good Times

Monday
Dec 22nd
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

The Mystery Lights

music_LYLBVinylRevolutionS1What could four young guys from Salinas and Santa Cruz possibly have in common with one (insert uncontrollable gag here) Paris Hilton? Try a four-story mansion in the Hamptons. No joke. Last summer, the crafty garage rockers in the Mystery Lights enjoyed two weeks pimpin’ it out in an extravagant pad that’s also been used to house the Maiden of Vain. Flown to New York by the band’s Closet Trekkie Records, who signed the quartet after coming across its MySpace, the Lights fulfilled an agenda of playing nine East Coast shows and recording the entire time.

Talk about ironic: the lavish digs were the background for the kind of deliciously dirty, paint-peeling retro riffs that would make Paris jump out of her stacked Versace heels. For a group that’s used to practicing in a little shack in Prunedale, it all came out of nowhere. But then again, the Mystery Lights story has been riddled with randomness from the start. Forming in 2006, frontman/guitarist Mike Brandon explains how even his role at the mic was a surprise. “We started out playing at an auto shop on Commission Street in Salinas but we didn’t have a singer,” he remembers. “Finally, I started singing in a Misfits cover band, and when Joe [Styles, bassist] saw us play he decided I was going to be the singer.” Four years later, music_LYLBVinylRevolutionBrandon’s shaggy mop and ‘60s snarl leads the Mystery Lights’ Standells’-inspired rock that’s awash with jangly head-boppers, surf guitar rants, psych meanderings and explosive punk tangents that rumble with drummer Steve Ringer’s meaty attacks. Second guitarist L.A. Solano fills out the raw, amp-buzzing havoc. After releasing an 11-track debut, Teenage Catgirls & The Mystery Lightshow, the group’s toured the Northwest with the Luxury Sweets, taken on L.A. and headed to the Big Apple. “We’ve gotten more into punk and my lyrics got into Eastern philosophies a lot,” the singer also notes of the band’s evolution. Playing this week at the Crepe Place with labelmates the Shivas, the Mystery Lights bring one gritty show. And it’s no mystery: expect flying bodies in faded jeans. Leave the heels at home. | Linda Koffman
INFO: 9 p.m. Wed., March 24. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $8. 429-6994. themysterylightsmusic.com.
Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Is This a Dream?

A beginner’s guide to understanding and exploring the uncanny world of lucid dreams

 

Giving and Giving, Then Giving Some More

2014 is almost over. Wednesday, Dec. 17, the Jewish Festival of Light, Hanukkah, begins. We are in our last week of Sag and last two weeks of December. Sunday, Dec. 21 is winter Solstice, as the sun enters Capricorn (3:30 p.m. for the west coast). Soon after, the Capricorn new moon occurs (5:36 p.m. for the west coast)—the last new moon of 2014. Sunday morning Uranus in Aries (revolution, revelation) is stationary direct (retro since July 22). Uranus/Aries create things new and needed to anchor the new culture and civilization (Aquarius). We will see revolutionary change in 2015. Capricorn new moon, building-the-personality seed thought, is, “Let ambition rule and let the door to initiation and freedom stand wide (open).” Capricorn is a gate—where matter returns to spirit. But the gate is unseen until the Ajna Center (third eye), Diamond Light of Direction, opens. Winter solstice is the longest day of darkness of the year. The sun’s rays resting at the Tropic of Capricorn (southern hemisphere) symbolize the Christ (soul’s) light piercing the heart of the Earth, remaining there for three days, till Holy Night (midnight Thursday morning). Then the sun’s light begins to rise. It is the birth of the new light (holy child) for the world. A deep calm and stillness pervades the world.The entire planet is revivified, re-spiritualized. All hearts beating reflect this Light. And so throughout the Earth there’s a radiant “impress” (impressions, pictures) given to humanity of the World Mother and her Child. The star Sirius (love/direction) and the constellation Virgo the mother shines above. For gift giving, give to those in need. Give and give and then give some more. This creates the new template of giving and sharing for the new world.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Stocking Stuffers

The men behind the women of the Kinsey Sicks Dragapella Beautyshop Quartet explain their own special brand of ‘dragtivism,’ and their holiday show at the Rio
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Tramonti Pizza

Why there’s no such thing as too much Italian food in Seabright

 

Guitar or surfboard?

Guitar. The closest thing I ever came to surfing was sliding down a rock hill. Charlie Tweddle, Santa Cruz, Hats and Music

 

Fortino Winery’s Intriguing Charbono

At the opening celebration of the new Santa Clara Wine Trail in August, one of the wineries we visited was Fortino. This is where I first tasted their intriguing estate-grown Charbono—a varietal that is one of the rarest in California, with only 80 acres grown statewide.

 

Beyond the Jar

How Tabitha Stroup has built her rapidly expanding jam empire