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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Listen to TONER's Dreamy Debut LP

Posted By on Wed, May 13, 2015 at 10:10 AM

The dreamy, emotional indie pop of TONER affords Sam Cruz, 21, who drums in Bay Area bands Never Young and Happy Diving, an opportunity to grab complete creative control of a project. And when Cruz takes the wheel, the lyrical content veers off towards the heart-wrenching topics of family drug addiction, break ups, and loneliness — or as Cruz puts it, "bummer punk." 

"I don't have to answer to anyone, but at the same time it's stressful," Cruz said of his new role as a band leader. "Being in front of people and playing guitar is new to me, so I'm still kinda nervous and over-thinking everything when we play."

Cruz says the lyrical content of the LP, which he recorded in the shed in his backyard, (where he has recorded various other projects including, Harsh Vibes, Modern Kicks, and his original solo effort which he sold the naming rights to for three 40ozs), is broken up into three main sections. The first is about past relationships, the second about leaving his hometown, and the third about family issues relating to drug addiction — but all have strong Duster influences.

"It's inspired me to do something with myself and push myself forward," Cruz says, referencing "Shoot it up", the last song on the LP, which tackles Cruz's father's struggles with drug addiction.

The band has three songs planned for release on a 7 inch at the end of summer. It also plans to introduce a new singer to front the band.

Listen to the new LP below. The standout track is "High & Dry", which features melancholy vibes and lyrics like, " I don't dream much anymore / but I sleep all day I'm such a bore and I hate it".
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About The Author

Matt Saincome

Matt Saincome

Matt Saincome is SF Weekly's former music editor.


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