Top 5 Best Local SD Bands

#1: The Material

From their Facebook Page:

Hailing from San Diego, CA, The Material has catapulted into the national limelight of up-and-coming bands. With their debut EP release “Tomorrow”, The Material has effectively attracted attention from multiple media outlets including television, internet, radio, and even video games.

Fans of The Material have made their presence known by making The Material the number one unsigned band in San Diego Myspace’s music polls and by voting for The Material out of 4,000 bands to perform live on MTV’s Dew Circuit Breakout.

Their song “Moving to Seattle” is featured on the video game Rock Band, they have had songs featured on the WB’s “Sorority Forever”, and have had their video for the song “The Truth About Reality” featured on MTV2.

Currently the band is heading out on tour to promote their highly anticipated new 3-song EP “To Weather The Storm”.

Meet the Band:

Colleen D’Agostino – Vocals
Jon Moreaux – Guitar
Roi Elam – Guitar
Jordan Meckley – Bass
Kevin Pintado – Drums

Hands down #1 is The Material. No questions asked, no doubt about it. I’ve gotten to know the members of this band, current and former, personally, and I have only nice things to say about them. They know and remember each of their fans by their first names and Colleen, the lead singer, makes it a point to connect with every fan during shows. After they break down the equipment for each show (themselves), they come to their own merch booth and are happy to meet their fans, sign autographs, sign merch and pose for pictures. I personally know they love to hug, so make sure to do so next time you see them play.

One thing you can tell about a band is how their former members interact with the band after leaving it. I know 4 former members of The Material, and each one still loves and supports the band and their music. You can find the former bass player, Matt, at many of their shows. At The Material’s first show without original drummer, Noah, he still came and proceeded to jump on stage half-way through the show and rocked out with Jon. Brian and DAS, both former bass players, are still very close with original members Roi, Jon and Colleen, and twitter @ each other often.

The Material is not just a band, but a group of people you can actually reach out to and become friends with. Their level of commitment and contact with their fans puts them above and beyond any other local band, and any band in general. I personally make it a point to introduce The Material to all my friends, and I honestly have yet to find someone who doesn’t love their music. And yes, they may seem similar to Paramour, but if you listen carefully, they are their own unique sound. They have a darker, harder edge to them that makes rocking out a necessity.

Their facebook description obviously was not updated recently, since they have already completed their first full length album that is set to be released 1.11.11, called “What We Are“. Their first EP was “Tomorrow” consisted of 6 rockin’ songs, which is about 10 too short! Off that album, the song “Moving to Seattle” was featured in Rock Band, and is one of my personal favorite songs to play AND sing too. And I don’t sing. A hint though: The drum-track is insane if you go any higher than easy. They are releasing a second song to Rock Band, to be announced. Their second EP, “To Weather the Storm” sounded a bit different from the first one. Their sound and lyrical content had matured and the first track “Unforgivable” has some amazing rifts and sound effects in it. PS, all are available through itunes.

The Material recently released a music video for their song “Before This Ship Goes Down”, check it out here: http://www.purevolume.com/new/thematerial.

You can also buy their awesome merch, previous albums, and pre-order their upcoming album all here: http://thematerial.bigcartel.com/products. I can’t wait for their album release show:

This will be our first Main Stage show at Soma so we really want to see ALL of you there!

WHAT: The Material CD Release Show for “What We Are”
WHEN: Friday, January 14, 2011
WHERE: Soma, 3350 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego, CA
WHY: Don’t even ask. You DO NOT want to miss this! :]
WHO: THE MATERIAL w/ A Dull Science, Get Back Loretta, Flight To Athena, and more

HINT: Buy multiple tickets by changing the quantity on the check out screen!

CDs and brand new merch (new posters, new shirts, new hoodies, and more) will be on sale at the show!

Tickets will be shipped the week of the show.

Image of WHAT WE ARE CD Release Show Tickets @ Soma (San Diego, CA)

You can buy tickets for this show here: http://thematerial.bigcartel.com/product/what-we-are-cd-release-show-tickets-soma-san-diego-ca. I personally already bought 4 tickets for this, it’s a HUGE event for a local band to be playing the mainstage. I’ve seen Modest Mouse and Minus the Bear among other huge bands play here.

The Material is already a huge band, who have done several nationwide tours, released albums, and all on their own dime! Yes, you heard me right, they are a DIY band, which means when you order something, they are the ones who are driving to the post office and mailing you their merch, with love.

Here is a sampler of their new album: WARNING, it’s amazing.
http://lads.myspace.com/Embeds/SongEmbed/SongEmbed.swf

#2: IVES the Band

From their Facebook Page:

Hello, we’re Ives The Band from San Diego, California. Our debut full length, “The Incredible Story of Mr. Birch“, is available NOW on iTunes and Amazon MP3! Become a fan of IVES & receive exclusive news, contests, and updates here on Facebook!

Meet the Band:

Jason Tolliver
Kyle Moore
Bryce Paul
Drew Newman

I heard of this band because they opened for Dashboard Confessional at House of Blues. I actually arrived to late to hear them at HoB, but I did listen to them online and immediately fell in love with their sound. I bought their album on itunes, and have been a fan ever since. A few months ago I finally got to see them live at The Beauty Bar, and they were even better live. The lead singer’s intensity was so easy to get lost in. And even though it was a small show with not a lot of people there, they committed like it was a huge show. But what makes these guys #2 over some other great bands is how nice they were. I talked to the guys after their show at Beauty Bar and they were so nice, and so open. They actually went all the way out to their van to bring me the two styles of shirts they had, so I could choose, and they offered to give it to me for free! And they threw in a poster, which they all signed for me. I payed them what I could though, because after hearing The Material’s story, they don’t have much to live on day to day when they are on tour. ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS tip your band if you can, and never accept the deal!

Here is a video of them playing live at the House of Blues in Aneheim

Plain and Simple, their music is chilling and magical. It’s GOOD. It’s more than good.

#3: Children of Nova

From their Facebook Page:

“Children of Nova is an American experimental rock band from San Diego, California. The band incorporates aspects of alternative rock, progressive rock, post- hardcore, punk rock, heavy metal and jazz.”

Meet the Band:

Teo – Vocals
Nick – Guitar
Pozzi – Guitar
Mario – Bass
Colin – Drums

I came to know of this band through a guy I dated, who was really close friends with pretty much all the members of the band. Children of Nova also has played alongside The Material many times, which always makes for a hell of a killer rock show. For a short time, I got to hang around these guys and get to know some of them a little bit and one thing I can say about them is that they are all serious about their music, and seriously in love with playing.

Their debut album, “The Complexity of Light“, is a concept album, but even if you listen to the songs alone or in random order, they are all still facemelting!

They break down the concept to the album here, from their Myspace Page:

Hello CON fans everywhere!First off thank you for listening and being a part of our artistic journey!

Our first album, “The Complexity of Light” was just released and the response has been amazing! And while you are all enjoying the music we thought it was important to give you a deeper understanding of the characters, setting and terms used in the story of our album to enhance the overall experience. So here goes….

1. Children of Nova: Our name follows the belief that we are all made up of the same space materials and stardust from giant supernoval explosions.

2. Nova: The leader and defender of light. One of two characters (the other being Corbin) to be tested as leader of his world. He believes he can save the world and everyone in it by instilling hope and courage into their souls. Since childhood, he has suffered extremely lucid, vivd dreams of the future which he has used to bring the hopeless and deprived back to the light.

3. Corbin: The leader and defender of darkness. Born from intense reactions of energy on his home planet, he too was chosen to pursue leadership over his world. But what he craved was control. Although more powerful than his nemesis (Nova), he lacked the ability of forsight. In his experiences he found that crows on Arceadion carried small fragments of time inside them. When they gazed into his eyes he saw a piece of his life, either past, present or future. His connection to the birds was immediate and with their aid he formed his destiny; which ultimately leads to the destruction of the sun.

4. Arcaedion: The home planet to our characters and the setting of our story.

5. The Order: Corbin’s personal army of pure darkness. Once thriving people with unique freedoms, they now turn over their existence to the most powerful of beings and destroyer of the sun, Corbin. He promises them a fresh start in a new system of worlds that he will take them to once he has acquired enough of their life energy.

6. Second Sight Blackout: A prophecy showing the complete destruction of Arcaedion and the final steps of Corbin’s fall into darkness.

7. The Fall of Aphonia: The end of the common man’s silence. We all must be heard.

There is much more to be released and eventually the entire saga will be available. For now, if you have any questions or feel like chatting with us to enter deeper into the story please feel free.  We are unbelievably passionate about what we are creating and your interest is more than appreciated.

We hope all this helped you peer through the door of our overall path and design.

We love and appreciatee you, our fans.

Infinite love and laughter,
Children of Nova

My personal favorite song is “The Order”. The drums on that song are out of this world crazy, and Colin is an excellent musician. Their music composition is far above par from what many other local bands are doing, and they often switch time in the middle of their songs, sometimes several times through a song. Their song “The Complexity of Light” can also be found on Rock Band, and they are soon releasing a second song to the game, to be announced. I heard a rumor once that Teo’s voice hits the second highest note in Rock Band history, the first belonging to Evanescence.  I don’t know if it is verified… but once you listen to the song, it is certainly believable!

Their shows are never boring, and if you miss one, you are truly sad. They don’t just play music on a stage, they put on a show, Teo draws you in with his intensity and the other members of the band keep you entertained with their moves. They definitely are a hardcore rock band, more so than any other band on this list. And beyond that, CoN connects with fans much like The Material. After their shows you can find them at their merch counter, ready to sign posters, autographs, take pics (beware: they’re often sweaty) and give free hugs. They really are some of the chillest, friendliest guys out there, so don’t be scared to come up and say HI to them after a show.

I also just saw on their Myspace Page that they are releasing their second album sometime in the Fall of 2011, so keep following them for updates on this, and shows.

#4: The Silent Comedy

From their Facebook Page:

“It all really started when my brother and I began writing songs and playing together in a little house on an alley in Imperial Beach, California. We had no furniture, no dishes, not even a stove. The only thing in the house was an old upright piano.” says J. John, vocalist and bass player. “We had just moved back to California after living out of backpacks traveling through southeast Asia, India, Nepal, southern Europe, and the United States. We came back with nothing, but someone gave us a piano so we started writing songs.””I used to go into department stores just to play piano in Europe. The management would get upset but people would be crowding around, so they let me play.” adds J. Benjamin, John’s brother, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist. “They didn’t like a scruffy hobo-looking kid touching their expensive instruments. We really started from nothing when we moved back to the US and have built new lives around our music.”

The Silent Comedy started as a side project of the now defunct post-punk group Dehra Dun. The brothers started that band, named for a city in India where they had lived, in 2002 along with drummer/multi-instrumentalist J. Benedict.

“The Silent Comedy was started with two goals: To be a recording project that could involve many of our musician friends, and to be an outlet for this Americana material we had been writing, ” J. John explains. “We didn’t really intend for it to be a live band at all. One thing led to another, and we needed to play a show that Dehra Dun was unavailable for, so we decided to give it a shot.” I. Forbes, who had played violin with Dehra Dun, and longtime friend J. Michael were enlisted to help with the first show. “After that, things just took off.” Remembers J. Michael.

The band changed from its original idea of a fluid lineup and a strict ‘recording only’ vision to a five piece core with a variety of guests.
In addition to a cast of guest performers, The Silent Comedy is known for its frequent instrument changes, and lively stage antics. Their live show has become their defining characteristic.

“It’s some kind of mix between vaudeville and a tent revival meeting,” says violinist I. Forbes. “We want to give you more for your money than just a bunch of indie guys on stage trying to look as bored as possible. We don’t care a whole lot about being cool.”

Old time clothes, high energy stage antics, foot stomping, and group sing-a-longs define a Silent Comedy performance. “I love their live show.” Offers Tim Pyles (F.M. 94.9, Music Matters Magazine). “It’s got rock and old-time religion, as well as the ability to take you to a space occupied by only a few bands.”

“We wanted to get back to a certain performance ethic.” adds John. “My great-grandparents were traveling performers in vaudeville and that tradition of showmanship is strong in what we do.”

“If you feel like you can’t find music that you can raise your beer to, come see us,” says J. Michael. “Grow a beard, pour a drink and get folked up.”

In late 2007 The Silent Comedy began work on an untitled EP. With songs recorded at XIV Recorders with Brian Karscig of Louis XIV (Atlantic Records) producing. The project promises to be the band’s best studio representation to date. “Until now the live show was the thing to see.” Says J. Benedict. “This recording finally captures a bit of what we try to bring to the show.”

Meet the Band:

Chad Lee: Percussion
Jeremiah Zimmerman: Piano, Guitar, Vocals
Joshua Zimmerman: Bass guitar, Vocals
Justin Buchanan: Banjo, Guitar, Mandolin
Tim Graves: Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals

You know I’m not entirely sure of how I originally started listening to this band. They played a show with The Material once that I wasn’t able to attend, but my little sister and her friends were there and they came home with rave reviews, so I looked em up online and gave them a listen and loved them! I did get to see them play one show though at Soma Sidestage when they played with Children of Nova, and my sister and I bought some shirts from them. They tried to give us a deal, but I refused. And I think I have a crush on all of them! They are some seriously sexy guys!

The Silent Comedy just released their second EP this year, “Common Faults” which can be found on itunes. My favorite song is “Carnival” off “Common Faults” and I think sums up why they are such a fun band to listen to on album, and even funnier to watch play live. Their show is never dull, as they are always switching things up. Including venue. This band plays more venues than any other bands that I follow, which I think is awesome because each time you see them it’s a totally different experience. They just played their last show for the year at U-31, an event that I was unable to attend, and VERY sad about it.

Read this interview from Owl and Bear and you really get a sense of how involved they are in their music, and how much they genuinely care.

#5: Transfer

From their Facebook Page:

“Transfer is a mumu of music draped over the grandma of their genre.”

Meet the Band:

Shaun Cornell, Andy Ridley, Jason Cardenas and Matthew Molarius

I’ve actually never seen Transfer live, but I know that they have played with many of the bands I have already listed above. I do own their album, and it’s a great one! They were just named in Clash Magazine “ONES TO WATCH in 2011″! Read the article here: http://www.transferband.com/transfer/blog-article//412/

Since I don’t know much about this band, I will let their music and fans speak for themselves. But keep a look out on them… I know I will be!!!

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