Indie electronica band Joywave is back home in Rochester and set to perform this Saturday at the grand re-opening of the Frederick Douglass Building.

The band may have local origins, but it’s bound for widespread fame.

“It’s nice to be home,” vocalist Daniel Armbruster said in a phone interview with the Campus Times. “We’ve been traveling a lot the last couple of years.”

Joywave is currently recording, working partly out of a barn in Honeoye, about 30 miles away. Their newest album, still unnamed, has yet to be released, but the work is expected to be complete early next year. Armbruster added that they should be on the road again soon.

Joywave formed in 2010 with Armbruster, guitarist Joseph Morinelli, Sean Donnelly on bass, and Paul Brenner playing the drums. Benjamin Bailey took over as keyboardist for the band two years later.

The origin of the name “Joywave,” too, is part of the band’s history, but is a well-kept secret.

“We’ve never actually answered that question,” Armbruster said. “The best answer we came up for it is that Ben named the band.”

When asked about the band’s and his own personal projects and ambitions, Armbruster responded his typical irreverent manner.

“[I’m] thinking about making lunch pretty soon,” he said. “That’s coming up in the near future […] I’m trying to take it easy—take it easy and make a record.”

Joywave made its way to the alternative music scene through its online mixtapes and collaborations with other artists such as Big Data (“Dangerous”) and Betty Who (“Somebody Loves You”). Last year, the band released its album, “How Do You Feel Now?,” known for innovative hits like “Destruction,” “Carry Me,” and “Tongues,” which surfaced from the underground music world through an appearance in season five of Showtime’s award-winning series “Shameless.”

“Basically […] the whole music industry is a giant shit storm, so we should do whatever makes us happy,” Donnelly said last year.

Armbruster says the band still embraces that idea. This can be seen in their 2016 release, “Swish,” an album consisting of nine slightly different versions of their popular song, “Destruction.” The way the song titles are placed on the album spells out, “Why be credible when you can be incredible?”

While on tour, Joywave provided its fans with regular webisodes titled “Coffee with Joywave,” sharing interviews and behind the scenes moments musicians they meet while on tour. Each episode lasts approximately 15 seconds—almost enough to let you see who they’re interviewing.

“[We’re] just trying to have some fun, a joke,” Armbruster said. “It’s something stupid to do while we’re on the road and harass people that we’re on tour with.”

Regardless of the band’s rising popularity and sardonic attitude toward the music industry, Armbruster makes it clear that he and his bandmates do care about one thing—or, rather, one place.

“I wish that U of R kids would leave campus more,” Armbruster said. “Please, please, please leave campus. Get in your car, drive anywhere off campus. Go to Bug Jar, hang out, go to any other cool coffee shops downtown—just get involved in Rochester, because the smart minds that U of R breeds will be what makes Rochester awesome in the future. So many kids come here and go to school, and that’s awesome, but I’m encouraging all of them to get involved in Rochester and leave campus.”

Armbruster quickly cited his own curiosity as the reason for his off-campus push.

“I just feel like I haven’t really met any U of R kids, like, ever, and I’ve lived here my whole life,” he said. “It seems like it’s its own island, and I wish that it wasn’t. I’m just trying to meet more U of R people, is what I’m saying.”

Opening for Joywave this Saturday will be UR’s own Luke Metzler ‘16, a former member of the YellowJackets and solo artist. Both performances will include a cash bar.

Tagged: Concerts


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