Santa Cruz Good Times

Monday
Aug 03rd
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Bomb’s Away

mus featJeff Rosenstock breaks up Bomb the Music Industry and goes solo

When Jeff Rosenstock decided to give away his band’s albums for free on the Internet in 2006, people thought he was crazy. But that band, indie-punk-ska-electronic maniacs Bomb the Music Industry, became one of the biggest-drawing DIY punk bands in the country, and the subsequent success of Bandcamp would suggest he was ahead of his time.

In January, Rosenstock baffled fans again by breaking up Bomb the Music Industry, just when things seemed to breaking for them in a whole new way. Amongst other things, they’d been selected to cover the Weeds theme song in the show’s final season in 2013, alongside the Mountain Goats, Steve Martin and Aimee Mann.

Clearly, he has no interest in doing things just because “that’s the way they’re done.”

“I think a lot of conventional wisdom is a bit of a red herring,” says Rosenstock. “All of the stuff that I have done, I haven’t done to go against the grain—it’s because it makes sense to me. It’s like, ‘why isn’t everybody else doing this?’”

Rosenstock wasn’t impressed by the cool factor that became attached to what was originally his dorky bedroom solo project.

“It seemed like we were a cool band once it stopped. Once people didn’t have to go see us live anymore, they could say that they liked us—that’s when we started to be a cool band,” Rosenstock says. “We were still fighting to do whatever we wanted to do. We were still a band that was getting ripped off by promoters on our last tour, and had shitty shows. We didn’t get that many reviews for [their last album] Vacation. We never felt like we were a cool band.”

Ending the band made perfect sense to Rosenstock. By that point, they really were a band, not just his project. He didn’t want to start swapping out members or dishonoring what they’d all accomplished together by milking the brand.

Their last couple of shows in Brooklyn drew a ton of people, and a lot of media attention, but Rosenstock has already moved on, releasing the solo album I Look Like Shit, which is similar to Bomb the Music Industry’s crazy eclectic punk sound, but darker and moodier.

Now he’s just finished recording his second album, and is setting out on a string of six West Coast dates, the first shows with the backing band from his new album: John DeDomenici, bassist for Bomb; Mike Huguenor, guitarist for San Jose post-punk band Hard Girls; and Kevin Higuchi, drummer for San Jose/San Diego ska group Whiskey Avengers.

“I just want to keep making good things that people can like. That’s the only thing I worry about. I don’t ever want to half-ass it, or put out something that I’m not 100 percent proud of at the time,” says Rosenstock. “With I Look Like Shit, it was a weird record, but I was 100% proud of it. It makes me feel good that my life is not going to end because Bomb the Music Industry ended.”

Unlike the new record, which was recorded at a real studio (Atomic Garden in East Palo Alto), I Look Like Shit was made much in the same way as the first Bomb the Music Industry album, Album Minus Band—alone in his bedroom. It was released with no real intentions of it going anywhere, but Rosenstock’s fans loved it.

“There’s a lot of stuff that you start thinking about once you turn 30,” he says. “My whole goal is always to be as honest as possible, and I think the longer I write songs, I go deeper into myself—there’s a lot of dark things in there,” Rosenstock says.

The new album is yet to be released, and he’s fairly certain it’ll be a Jeff Rosenstock solo album, though it could be a new band altogether.

“Honestly, if it wasn’t for those last Bomb shows, I probably wouldn’t be going out to record a record at a studio. I probably would have released what I made in my bedroom,” he says. “There were people at those Bomb shows that were talking to me and saying, ‘don’t stop playing music.’ I don’t need to throw up any more roadblocks.”


Jeff Rosenstock performs at 8 p.m. on Sunday, May 12  at the Crepe Place in Santa Cruz. Tickets are $10.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Health Screening

Santa Cruz wellness expert releases app to improve workplace well-being

 

Leo Sun; Full Moon, Venus Retro in Leo; Saturn Direct

It’s a complex week of planetary movements, challenges, demands and callings. We’re in the time of the Leo Sun. Leo—fixed fire, gold, the heart, generous, strong, noble, the king/queen—needs appreciation and praise from everyone in order to move forward. During Leo we gain a greater sense of self-identification by recognizing our creativity. It’s therefore a perfect time for Venus retrograding in Leo. In Venus retrograde we review and re-assess values. Venus retro in Leo concerns our self as valuable, acknowledging talents, gifts, abilities and offerings. Friday, Venus re-enters Leo (29 degrees, a critical degree) continuing the retrograde to 14 degrees Leo on Sept. 6. Friday (Full Moon) is also the (8 degrees) Leo solar festival, Festival of the Future. Leo is the heart of the sun, the heart of all that matters. When attuned to this heart, we have understanding and inclusivity. The heart of the Lion is Mitra (think “Maitreya,” the coming World Teacher). Leo prepares humanity to receive divine love from subtle sources and later to radiate that love to the kingdoms. Sirius, Ray 2, where love originates, streams through Regulus (heart of Leo), into the heart of the sun (Ray 2) and into all hearts. The heart of Leo is Regulus. Joining Venus, the love underlying all of creation appears. Saturday is Sun/Neptune (confusion or devotion) with late night Saturn turning stationary direct. Ideas, plans and structures held long in abeyance (since March 14) slowly move forward. (Read more on Leo and the week at nightlightnews.org and Risa D’Angeles’ Facebook page, accessed through my website.)

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of July 31

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

 

Holy Cannoli

New bakery opens in Ben Lomond, plus Randall Grahm’s quest to grow 10,000 new grape varieties, and Mexican cooking classes

 

Is Santa Cruz turning into Malibu North?

It's got a ways to go before it gets wrecked like Malibu, but I think we need to be very careful about growth. Maria Mattioli, Santa Cruz, Psychotherapist

 

Bargetto Winery

A much-anticipated annual event at Bargetto Winery is the release of their very special La Vita red wine. June 7 was the day to be heralded this year, and I happily squeezed my car into their overloaded car park in eager anticipation of tasting the new La Vita nectar.

 

Margaritaville

Popular Capitola spot gets new owner and complete makeover