Shape-shifting rhythms and melodic guitar lines with intimate, heartfelt vocals: DERDE VERDE are named after Val Verde, a rural valley town of coyotes, rolling hills, and big sky, an hour north of Los Angeles. Their music moves effortlessly from the textured energy of krautrock and the layered intensity of shoegaze, to the introspective intimacy of an acoustic living room performance. The band evolved out of the songwriting partnership between singer/guitarist Dylan McKenzie and bassist Jonathan Schwarz. Their love of earnest songwriters ranging from Neil Young and Nick Drake, to Elliott Smith and Mark Kozelek, as well as the musical interplay and studio experimentation by artists from Kraftwerk to My Bloody Valentine, led the band to craft a style of their own that combined sincere lyrical reflections delivered with a soft vulnerability over intricate instrumental arrangements that swim in atmospheric spontaneity and rhythmic undercurrent. Derde Verde often draw lyrical inspiration from poets like Mary Oliver, or Walt Whitman, and the songs evoke a rich landscape that explores questions of natural, human, and subconscious experience, infused with the textured and stream of consciousness art-rock arrangements crafted by the five-piece.
Derde Verde’s latest release ‘Meander Belt’ EP (Kursaal) was written and developed after the band toured the US and Europe in support of 2013’s ‘Let Me Be a Light.’ The songs were recorded and self-produced throughout 2017 in a warehouse space above a flower shop in Downtown LA. The new record is a collection of songs that draws on themes of loss, fear, love, longing, and transformation. The title, ‘Meander Belt,’ refers to the movement of a river stream, as it shifts its channel from time to time, or in times of flood. Dylan McKenzie, singer and guitarist of Derde Verde, explains: “We are interested in this as a metaphor for the landscape of the self, something that seems constant and permanent, but is also never the same: flowing and changing, contradicting itself, twisting and transforming.” The songs of the EP were initially released in a series of singles, before the band teamed up with German indie-label, Kursaal, to release the EP on CD and digital formats.
Derde Verde's 'Meander Belt' EP was released December 8th on CD, Apple Music, Spotify, iTunes, and Bandcamp via Kursaal (Germany).
Derde Verde: Dylan McKenzie (Lead Vocals / Guitar), Jonathan Schwarz ( Vocals / Bass), Andrew Lessman (Drums), Evan Montgomery (Guitar), Evan Taylor (Percussion, Keyboard, Vocals)
Similar Fashion is an avant-rollercoaster jazz-n-roll band from Los Angeles. Led by saxophonist Logan Hone, Similar Fashion features viola shredder Lauren Baba, magic-emmitting guitarist Gregory Uhlmann, & fire-wielding polyrhythmic groove machine Jesse Quebbeman-Turley.
Their new album 'Portrait of' is "an exhilarating and sugar-coated ride" (Slug Magazine) and was released in early 2018. Their first album was released in 2015 on pfMentum and was described by LA Weekly as "a mostly irreverent romp full of chaotic sounds." Downtown Music Gallery called it a "breath of fresh air" that "certainly does feel good."
Similar Fashion has somehow straddled the line between performing in rock & DIY venues like Coaxial, the Bootleg Theater, and house shows while also performing in more formal settings like Angel City Jazz Festival, MorYork, The Blue Whale, and Berkeley Arts Festival. They also regular teach workshops at schools including University of Utah, University of Reno, Snow College, College of Southern Idaho, and more.
Joshua Hill is a composer, songwriter, and violinist based in Los Angeles. In 2018, he received a Canadian Screen Award for co-writing the song “The Crown Sleeps” for the Academy Award nominated film The Breadwinner. He graduated summa cum laude from Arizona State University with a degree in Music Theory and Composition. Since then he has worked as an freelance composer, performer, recording engineer, educator, and most recently has devoted his focus to film scoring. He often works with guitarist and composer Michael Krassner (The Boxhead Ensemble) on film projects. “All Square”, the most recent film he worked on with Krassner won the Narrative Spotlight audience award at the 2018 South By Southwest film festival.
In addition to songwriting and performing he has developed an interest in experimental theater and performance art. After winning an Arizona Commission on the Arts grant he spent time with The Wooster Group in NYC and LA. He observed rehearsals and performances of their work A PINK CHAIR (In Place of a Fake Antique) to learn about their devisement and performance practices.
Early 2018, he released an album “Jon Cash and the Transfiguration of Merlin” which he recorded and produced in his project studio in Arizona. He also likes cats and painting.