Santa Cruz Good Times

Wednesday
May 27th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Older and Wiser

music audiafauna1Local pop/folk/electronica outfit Audiafauna grows up on debut LP, ‘Grow Down’

When it comes to thrift store shopping in Santa Cruz, there’s no deal that’s too good to be true. But nobody understands the value of thrift stores better than Krikor Andonian, the guitarist and keyboardist for local pop, folk, and electronica-laden quintet, Audiafauna. It was at a thrift store on Front Street in 2008, where Andonian—then a grad student studying plant ecology at UC Santa Cruz—met singer Kelly Koval, who was studying literature at the time.

“I noticed her in the store, and we ended up in line together and started chatting,” recalls Andonian, who now teaches at De Anza College in Cupertino. Their chat continued past checkout and evolved into a musical partnership, even though he admits, “We never tried to make a band. We just sat down and wrote songs together.” Koval made a lasting impression on Andonian, who gushes, “I really do love the way that she communicates through music and the lyrics.”

The pair debuted their first three-track EP, The Leaflet, in 2010, with songs chock-full of subtle electronic beats, plus chilling keys and strings. The opening track, “Fallen,” leaves the listener on pins and needles, as Koval sings an apocalyptic version of “Rain Rain Go Away,” combating the end of the world as swiftly and efficiently as a seamstress: “The day the sky fell from the heavens/ I grabbed my needle and thread/ and lifted my head up to the heavens/ and sewed it right back up again.”
Adding texture to the rich, assorted sound that is Audiafauna, is R2 the Specialist (drums/electronics), Alexis Hawks (cello), and Natural Bridges State Park employee Chris Lynch (violin/keys), all of whom are featured in the video for “Roots,” in which they alternate between playing instruments and pretending to do so with tree branches. In the chorus, Koval sings: “Somewhere there’s a tree that grows up endlessly/ for all of the life you share with your friends and family/ the roots sing to the core/ the roots sing to the core.”

music audiafauna2“Roots” is the second track off of Audiafauna’s 17-track debut LP, Grow Down—recorded and mixed by R2, whom Andonian affectionately defines as “the mastermind” and “The Wizard of Oz”— released on their Bandcamp page on May 5. Grow Down clocks in around the one hour mark, approximately 10 times as long as The Leaflet; with this duration, the band has succeeded in its efforts to showcase its miscellaneous music, influenced by all sorts of genres and artists.
Andonian says Lana Del Rey is a big influence for Koval, who has “been really into that minimalist, really simple … piano and vocals, subtle effects” type of sound. “For me, I’ve got one foot in the electronic world,” says Andonian, “building this world between folk and beautiful human melodies with [that of] the electronic. SBTRKT and James Blake have been super influential.”

He explains that Blake is “doing exactly what we want to be doing—really pushing the envelope as to what is pleasant in your ears. He manages to make harsh, abrasive tones palatable.”

On Friday, Audiafauna will celebrate the release of Grow Down, which took a year and a half to record, at Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park. Part of the proceeds will benefit Santa Cruz state parks. Asked why the band chose to perform there, Andonian said, “Rather than support a bar or a venue, it’s something we believe in.”

In an effort to further help the environment, the band was insistent on eco-friendly packaging for its new album. “Except for the CD, there’s no plastic in there,” Andonian says with pride. “The tray is made of recycled egg carton. The central thing that keeps it in place is made out of cork. It’s pretty much biodegradable.”

Audiafauna plays at 8 p.m. Friday, June 1, at Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park, 144 School St., Santa Cruz. $15/adv, $20/door. Visit brownpapertickets.com.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Ocean Odyssey

Sailing the high seas from Santa Cruz to French Polynesia, Sally-Christine Rodgers documents the trials, tribulations and joys of exploring the world by boat

 

Gemini Festival of Goodwill, World Invocation Day

This entire week is a preparation by the New Group of World Servers (NGWS) for the June full moon (Tuesday) and to welcome the Forces of Reconstruction, great outer planetary forces streaming into the Earth at the Gemini Solar Festival. The Gemini Festival at the June full moon is called the Festival of Goodwill and World Invocation Day (recitation of the Great Invocation, the mantram of direction for humanity, hourly around the world). During the (12 degrees) Gemini festival, the Wesak blessing of the will-to-good is released and radiated (Gemini distributes) to humanity. When the will-to-good is received, humanity is then able to radiate goodwill to each other and to the kingdoms. The Gemini Festival is the third of the Three Spring Festivals (triangle of Force), setting the spiritual template and resources for Earth for the rest of the year (‘til next spring). This festival recognizes the true spirit of humanity—aspiring toward and seeking the will of God, dedicated to right human relation. At the full moon, the Divine nature of humanity is recognized. Christ stands with humanity, leader of his people, “the Eldest in a great family of brothers” (Romans VIII, 29.) Each year at the Gemini festival, Christ preaches the last sermon of Buddha, His brother, a sermon calling forth human and spiritual unity, represented by an outflow of love (work of the Christ) and wisdom (work of the Buddha). The forces of reconstruction stream in during the Festival, ushering in an era of pronounced creative activity, rebuilding the tangible world on new creative lines. This necessitates the total destruction of the old forms no longer useful for the new world era. Everyone is invited. Join us everyone for this Festival of Goodwill by reciting the Great Invocation.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of May 29

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

The Main Avant

Jozseph Schultz caters New Music Works’ 35th annual Avant Garden Party, plus brews for a cause

 

What will Santa Cruz be like in the future?

 society that is more awakened and realizes its own value and the beauty of the stunning Earth. Marguerite Clifford, Felton, Nutrition Health Care

 

Chesebro Wines

Piedras Blancas-Roussanne 2011

 

Real Thai Kitchen

Ratana Bowden on why Thai cuisine isn’t as spicy as everyone thinks