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Sonic Blume NJ
Mar 26, 2018

Local Teen Band ‘Sonic Blume’ Opens for Gaten Matarazzo’s Band

By Allison Connery

Sonic Blume NJ

Left to right: Chase Landgrebe, Joey Affatato (Moto Records), Danny Murray, Gaten Matarazzo, Max Connery and Andrew Phelan, backstage at The Starland Ballroom. 

Stranger things are beginning to happen for local Jersey Shore band Sonic Blume!  The band recently had the unique opportunity of opening for Netflix “Stranger Things” star Gaten Matarazzo and his band Work in Progress at the infamous Starland Ballroom on Saturday, February 3rd.

By far their biggest gig yet, Sonic Blume opened the show to a sold out crowd of more than 2000 fans, many of whom had never heard of them before.  But by the end of their set, the mostly teen crowd was dancing, singing catchy choruses, waving phone flashlights, buying Sonic Blume merch and asking band members for selfies between sets!

Sonic Blume is comprised of local high school students Max Connery and Andrew Phelan of Rumson-Fair Haven HS, and Middletown residents Danny Murray of Mater Dei Prep and Chase Landgrebe of Middletown South HS.  The four friends met while participating in the Performing Arts Academy at The Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank.  They quickly discovered a mutual preference and love for indie music, specifically Tame Impala and MGMT, as well as vintage 1980s-90s bands The Smiths and My Bloody Valentine.

One of Sonic Blume’s first gigs was in June 2016 at a Battle of The Bands at Mater Dei Prep.  It was here that the band met Asbury Park’s Lakehouse Recording Studio owner Jon Leidersdorff, who was judging the event. After hearing their set and being highly impressed with their musicianship and sound, Leidersdorff approached the boys, wanting to know the origins of their music. At the time, Sonic Blume was only covering other bands’ music, with no original music of their own. But Leidersdorff encouraged them to start writing originals and insisted that they should come see him when they did.  Inspired, the band began to do just that, and one year later, in summer 2017, Sonic Blume made their way to Lakehouse Recording Studios to record their first EP.  The band officially released their EP in November 2017 under the Moto Records label, available on all major music platforms including iTunes and Spotify.

During this time, Sonic Blume had begun playing the big Jersey Shore venues. They opened for The Revivalists and White Denim at The Stone Pony; played with Remember Jones at The House of Independents; and with Deal Casino, Haunt Club and Toy Cars at The Asbury Park Brewery.  They were even contacted by a touring Michigan band Trash Soul to accompany them at The Brighton Bar in Long Branch. After being mentioned in an article in legendary NJ music magazine The Aquarian Weekly, the band got an even bigger boost after receiving their first rave review by NJ Racket, who said to “get in ahead of the crowd and check out Sonic Blume’s debut EP…so you can be the guy who liked them before it was cool.”

But by far, their biggest gig yet, was opening for Gaten Matarazzo and his band Work in Progress at The Starland Ballroom. The band performed all original songs, 3 from their debut EP and 3 new ones which they plan on recording next month for summer release.   All huge Stranger Things fans, the boys of Sonic Blume are not sure if they were more excited by the venue, or the chance to hang with their favorite TV star.  To honor Gaten’s “Stranger Things” character, Dustin, lead singer Max Connery donned the infamous Dustin red, white, and blue baseball cap on stage, which the crowd absolutely loved!