L.A.’s Haunted Summer make intoxicatingly beautiful music. The duo of John Seasons and Bridgette Eliza Moody craft music that waltzes and sways in the summer sun, as Moody’s lilt and soft orchestration carries you through unfolding dreamscapes. Fans of Beach House, Mazzy Star and Twin Sister will find themselves getting lost in the band’s upcoming Something in the Water EP, due in September.
Amoeba Hollywood is proud to sponsor the band’s music video premiere show at The Satellite Aug. 1. Amoeba has a free ticket to the show to the first 10 people that buy their self-titled EP at the store while supplies last. The show starts at 9 p.m. and also features Tashaki Miyaki, yOya and The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers. You can grab the first single from their EP, "All Around," as a free download from Amoeba.
I sat down with John Seasons and Bridgette Eliza Moody to discuss their exciting new project.
PST: How did the two of you start playing together?
Seasons: Bridgette and I were friends for eight years, I admired her as a fellow musician and friend for that period. We fell in true love last year and started making music together shortly after.
PST: Did you guys talk about what you wanted Haunted Summer to sound like beforehand, or did you just let it happen? Did you agree upon bands or artists that could serve as inspiration?
Moody: It happened incredibly organically. We had no concept of what we were trying to achieve, we were just happy playing music with someone new. The crazy part was how we seemed to read each other's minds — we were instantly on the same page musically, and songs just flowed out of us. It was the kind of music we had always wanted to make, we just needed each other to do it.
Seasons: We never talked about it. We basically just said, “Hey, lets write songs opposite to the formulas we were following with previous projects that had us very unhappy,” and it just happened like that. Our sound, songs and lyrics just poured out of us. I have always been a fan of thought-provoking music, the kind where the lyrics and music just make you feel something inside whether it's nostalgia, sadness, love or happiness, and we both knew we wanted Haunted Summer's music to have that vibe to it. Some artists I personally draw inspiration from are Bjork, Animal Collective, Portishead and The Flaming Lips.
|Photo by Amanda Glover|
PST: The music certainly brings to mind natural settings. There are allusions of sorts to forests and deserts, and the music has an oceanic quality as well. Was that something you wanted to convey in the music?
Moody: Our music can be very droney, simple parts that layer and blend and bend within themselves. It's that quality that reminds me of nature's self-sustainability, the whole circle of life deal. That has always been beautiful to me.
Seasons: Our music is born from sadness, and darkness, but given hope, love and light in this new age of truth we have landed in. We are grateful for our spirit guides that have given us the proper wisdom to relay the messages and sounds that we heard through the ages. So I guess it's proper that you get those vibes and images since our music comes from multiple life-spans and how far we have traveled to be here. I would hope listeners get the eerie element of beauty born from darkness.
PST: I know that John, you were in the band Seasons, had you, Bridgette, been playing music before and were you in other bands? Tell me about some of your musical backgrounds.
Moody: I was raised in a very musical family and learned to sing and play music at an early age. I was mostly caught up in musical theater, but had the chance to join a band in high school. That's how John and I met, actually. We played alongside each other but never in the same project for almost a decade. The last project I was a part of trolled the scene for eight years and finally managed to gain some small notoriety around town and play a handful of shows across the country, but whatever "success" we had was always masked by soulless lyrics and a complete lack of respect between all bandmates. I'll say I'm most grateful for that project's thorough outline of what I would never want to do with my own project.
Seasons: I agree with Bridgette, we ultimately wanted to write music with actual feelings and concepts. I am grateful for what I learned through those years. most importantly what I don't want to do musically. I started playing music when I was 12 and can play multiple instruments, my dad is a jazz drummer, and I have multiple family members that are musicians. I have been an active member of the L.A. music scene for a decade, playing in multiple projects through the years. These days I devote all my time and energy to Haunted Summer since it's pretty much the music I have always wanted to make.
PST: Do you guys have day jobs? What else do you do?
Moody: Keepin' the masses caffeinated at an independent coffee house.
Seasons: I work at The Greek Theatre.
PST: What can you tell us about the music video you’ll be premiering?
Seasons: It's directed by the very talented and award winning Christopher J. Ewing. He has directed videos for Family of The Year and Letting Up Despite Great Faults, among others. It's for our new single “All Around,” from our upcoming five-song EP due out in September titled Something In the Water.
PST: Have you begun recording your first album? What can you tell us about that so far?
Seasons: Yes our full length is about half way done. Raymond Richards and Luke Ehret produced some tracks, the band produced and recorded some tracks ourselves too, we are also in talks with Scott Colburn (Animal Collective, Arcade Fire) to maybe have him produce a couple of tracks as well. It's coming along and should be done by early 2014. The full-length will have 12 tracks and be titled Through the Woods. It will also feature cover art by the same photographer/artist that did the cover for our upcoming EP, Sarah Sitkin.