With a swirling combination of ’60s and ’70s-era classic rock and blues with the sunny sounds of SoCal-soaked surf rock, Carpool Tunnel are celebrating the announcement of their signing to Pure Noise Records.
In addition to today’s signing announce, Carpool Tunnel has dropped a brand new single “Empty Faces”. A longtime staple of the band’s live set, it is perhaps the best representation of Carpool Tunnel’s juxtaposition of classic and contemporary. Atop doo-wop charm and fuzzed-out guitars, Koppenjan muses about the state of relationships in the modern age – a muddied mix of emotions no other generation has been forced to confront.
“We all have people from our past [that] you don’t really talk to anymore but still have a strange connection to” the band explains. “You might follow them on social media or have photos of them. You know nothing about them now but still feel connected to them because you see them all the time”.
Like many 21st-century relationships, Carpool Tunnel started with the swipe of an app.
Just two weeks after an ad for Vampr – hailed as Tinder for musicians – came across Daniel Stauffer’s phone in 2017, the Bay Area drummer was in the studio along with two fellow Vampr users, guitarist Bradley Kearsley and singer/guitarist BenKoppenjan, recording their debut single “Afterlight” with Grammy-nominated producer Billy Mohler.
One new member – bassist Spencer Layne – and a $400 Craigslist van later, the brilliantly named band hit the road, bringing their California cool aesthetic and classically retro sound up and down the coast. In this live setting, free-wheeling and bereft of perfectionist attitudes, the quartet began laying the foundation for their long-awaited debut full-length album, due out early 2021 via Pure Noise Records.
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