Friday, August 18, 2006

The Attraction pushes punk's envelope

It's no wonder the Attraction picked up honors in the Best Punk category at the Southern California Music Awards in February of 2006, and then nabbed top honors in the same category at the Orange County Music Awards two months later.
The group's 12-song debut, "Step Right Up!" is a must have for discerning listeners who love punk. And the Huntington Beach-based outfit's sound is vast enough to include alt-rock, power pop and reggae. The Roundhouse Productions-issued disc features instantly-memorable melodic tracks such as "Tales of a Liar" and "Farewell," as well as the wistful U2-flavored "Christmas Song," the hardcore assault of "Bleed" and reggae tune "Subject to Change." While the original July 2005 pressing of "Step Right Up!" recently sold out, the Attraction is repressing the disc in a special edition format that will include some live cuts.
"These are the greatest and most easy going guys I've ever been with in a band," said drummer Humper T, in an interview conducted after the Attraction tore through a strong 45-minute set at diPiazza in Long Beach on Aug. 10. The band's all-original lineup also features lead singer Lance Romance, guitarist Master John and bassist Beaver.
Watching the quartet perform together on stage, connect with a crowd and talk about the magic of firing on all cylinders, it's easy to see why the Attraction is likely the most aptly-titled outfit around. It's not the great songs alone; dressing in colorful attire and using some select lighting and sound effects to open their performances, they deliver a show that truly combines a powerful rock aesthetic with theater.
"It's fun. We all have grown," said Master John. "We've come in with an open mind. We throw the spaghetti against the wall and see what sticks." Added Lance Romance: "It's not just a band, it's a bond."
The Attraction has found a fast-growing fan base, thanks to airplay on Los Angeles' Indie 103.1 FM, as well as shows at large venues such as the Galaxy Concert Theatre in Santa Ana and opening for Guttermouth at Vault 350 in Long Beach. The band also headlined at the 15th annual Inkslinger's Ball, performing in front of its largest-ever audience at Angel Stadium in April.
Since playing its first show at Gallagher's in Huntington Beach on Oct. 11, 2003, the band has been writing, recording and playing music – all built around a mix of melodic choruses, catchy guitar riffs and enthralling shows. Very soon the Attraction will see if far-off audiences are as receptive as those in their own backyard; the band is playing at the Celebrity Night Club in Las Vegas tonight. In addition, it is going on a nationwide tour in October, including shows in connection with the CMJ Music Marathon festival in New York.
"This band is a second chance at life for me," admitted Beaver, who hadn't played music in several years before the Attraction. "I met Lance and we started the band three years ago. This is everything music should have been when I first started, being involved with a band that is more than four guys playing music. There is so much heart behind every song, but at the same time it's pure fun."
Lance Romance agrees: "I'm of the opinion, that (live) music has lost its entertainment value." That said there is no lack of substance in the Attraction's material. The ramifications of war ("Johnny") and the loss of loved ones ("Still Breathing" was written in the wake of the death of the lead singer's sister three years ago) are among the Attraction's most memorable songs.
"The word of mouth on us is ridiculous," Beaver said. "We haven't done pay to play (the system in which some clubs require artists to sell a minimum number of tickets to play). Once they (audiences) see us, they're sold."
The Attraction will perform at the South Bay Music Awards, 710 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, at 8 p.m. on Sept. 9.

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