Published on June 19th, 2013 | by Jessica Mickey0
Tape Waves Send a Ripple Across the Ocean and Back
It’s not everyday that a couple can record a few songs together, post it to Bandcamp, receive widespread music blog love, and sign with a U.K. record label, all before even playing out once. That is unless you’re Charleston-based dream-pop duo Tape Waves. Yeah, they did that.
Kim Hart and Jarod Weldin met while working for a wireless phone company in March 2012, and after realizing their similar tastes in humor and music, began dating. A few months later, they began making the other kind of sweet music together.
“Kim sent me a link to some recordings that she had done. I really loved her voice and asked her if she would be interested in singing on some of the recordings that I had been working on,” Weldin recalls. “I think she thought I was joking for a while, but one day, she added some vocal ideas on one of the songs, and that sort of started Tape Waves.”
Beaufort-native Hart moved to town in 2000 to attend the College of Charleston and then spent some time in Seattle before returning to the Lowcountry. The only other band she has played with is the Teacups, also based in Charleston, which she describes as “sort of punk and indie.”
Weldin, originally of Syracuse, N.Y., spent his formative years playing in various bands in his hometown, including I Am Idaho, an instrumental post-rock band, and Saving Throw, which he calls “a heavier, sort of post-hardcore band.” But the idea behind Tape Waves takes their musical skills and experience in a different direction “Living so close to the beach inspired me to want to start a sunny, beachy pop band,” Weldin claims.
The duo’s musical influences include Yo La Tengo, Superchunk, Seapony, and Beach Fossils. Black Book, one of the initial major blog supporters, compares Hart’s vocals to that of Beach House.
Over here at Metronome, we detect hints of Stephin Merritt of the Magnetic Fields’ side project the 6ths. Dreamy, surfy, lo-fi, and astral are words that spring to mind when listen to their sugary and soothing tracks, which were released on Bandcamp in March 2013, nearly exactly a year after they first met. And music bloggers almost immediately fell in love.
“It’s been very surprising and much appreciated,” Weldin humbly shares, “We put the songs up there, and within a day or two, they were shared on some blogs and YouTube, and it sort of continued from there. The band Seapony was nice enough to share our music through their Facebook page and recommend us through their own Bandcamp page, so I think that’s helped a lot as well.”
The Internet adulation included attention from a small U.K. record label as well. “One of my old friends shared our Bandcamp link with Kevin Rolfe, who runs Box Bedroom Rebels, and he said he was interested in putting our songs on a 7-inch,” Hart says. According to the label’s website, that four-song 7-inch will be released later this summer, complete with a color-by-numbers insert, an envelope containing confetti, and a mini-summer-scented notebook.
It may seem that Hart and Weldin accidentally and unexpectedly put the cart before the horse, but they plan to make good on that. This Friday night, Tape Waves will join fellow Charleston-based favorites Boring Portals and Atlanta indie-rockers Places to Hide at the Tin Roof for their live debut. Hart will play guitar and provide vocals, while Weldin will also play guitar while manipulating a drum machine.
Once they cross that first (or, in their case, that third) rite of musical passage, the duo plan on producing more tracks that will eventually make up a full-length album. At this rate, expect them to be crushing it by March 2014.
Tape Waves will share the Tin Roof stage with the Boring Portals and Places to Hide at 9 p.m. on Fri. June 21. Admission is $5. Visit facebook.com/tapewaves for more.
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