Philly four-piece Cruiser gets pegged as summer-pop quite often, possibly because its music is indeed poppy and its debut EP was released in the summer. But that’s selling it way short – this is catchy music for the year ’round. We can hear it in this week’s Key Studio Session, and we’ll see it tonight when they headline Kung Fu Necktie (info at the XPN concert calendar here).
The project of songwriter-guitarist Andy States, Cruiser has been tinkering around the scene since about 2011. It expanded into a four-piece with the addition of guitarist Josa Lazas, bassist Kyle Cook and drummer Jonathan van Dine, and the band really kicked things into overdrive last year with the release of an infectious single called “Kidnap Me.” The song quickly clocked up over 100,000 plays on Soundcloud; when we did their Key Session (recorded and mixed on location by Mattias Nilsson at Studio A in South Philly) this October, the guys were baffled at the response, jokingly wondering what a band known for summertime jams is supposed to do in the winter.
The answer: gettin’ stuff done. Cruiser recently announced it’s signing to The Windish Agency, a booking agent – which sounds like such a boring industry insider news item, but it’s actually a big deal. In an time where record deals are harder and harder to come by, having a booking agent to land an artist good touring slots and a way to make a living off music is just as important (if not more so) than having a label – and Windish is one of the heaviest hitters out there. It’s already paid off for the Cruiser dudes, since they are on the Firefly Music Festival that was announced yesterday, and hopefully we’ll see bigger things from them as the year unfolds – the summer and beyond.
Below, check out four performances recorded live at Studio A, and watch a video of Cruiser performing “The Fritz” for us, produced by Bands In the Backyard.
Cruiser, The Key Studio Sessions