"I was visiting (my childhood friend) Josh, and he said, 'we should go visit my new friend Rob! He lives in the same apartment complex!'" laughs Sarah Everton. " And we went over there, and Rob opened the door, and he was holding a plate of spaghetti, and I was instantly like-dayum." Thus began the partnership of Everton and Rob Garcia, aka Reading Rainbow.
The rest of their how-we-met story charts a meandering course to where they are now: a college-and-beyond courtship; art school and bonding over the music of Blur; a move from Virginia to Philadelphia; and, now, daydreams, wanderings, and uncertainty, the kind heard in their upcoming second full-length, Prism Eyes, out November 23 on Hozac Records. The band describes their music as "blown-out sonic love," and their songs have a catchy vintage vibe, with organs, reverb and shiver-inducing harmonies laid over fuzzy vocals. Under the accessible exterior lies heavier themes of frustration and existential angst, lending a weight and counterpoint to the everything-will-be-okay choruses and toe-tapping hooks in the songs.
Garcia and Everton came to Philadelphia to record their Shaking Through session in early June. Turns out they live right around the corner from Miner Street Recordings in a big, old house packed to the brim with amazing objects. We held the interview there and got the chance to explore their collection of instruments, art and collectibles. It was an exhilarating peak into their lives.
Reading Rainbow's Shaking Through session was one of only a handful of times they've ever been in a studio-Everton and Garcia are staunchly DIY, and before Prism Eyes, they had self-recorded all of their material on a Tascam eight-track in their basement. But if the idea of a lo-fi band in a hi-fi studio makes you nervous, you can put your worries to rest: Reading Rainbow blew us away. They churned out three incredible songs- each a morsel of loneliness, hope, and inspiration rolled into one. Blown-out sonic love, indeed.
Sarah and Rob go way back to the beginning and tell us how it all started.
What happens when a Lo-Fi band like Reading Rainbow comes into a Hi-Fi studio? Turns out, it's awesome.
A look at the Purple Audio Pants and Pres used for Shaking Through: Reading Rainbow.