New Noise Magazine is pleased to be bringing forth the video for “City Lights” by MANIAC. The L.A. punk band produce a high energy tune that is meant to disrupt the normality of the night time relaxation. The life of the night is high and might with this act, and they prove just that with the video below. “City Lights” is off of the upcoming release, Dead Dance Club, out June 1, 2018 on Dirt Cult / Hovercraft.
“‘MANIAC’s hot new video for their scorching new single ‘City Lights’ is part feminist snuff film, part homoerotic fever dream set in the industrial wastelands of Los Angeles. Rated M for Magnificent. File under ‘Post Sleaze-Jazz Gelato Core.” – Cap’n Zappin of MANIAC
Although coherent in style, every song sounds different on MANIACs follow up to debut Demimonde, its antagonistic elements learning to dance with its irresistible rhythmic frenzy. The band first came together in 2012 when Andrew Zappin and ex-Seattleite Zache Davis (The Girls, Cute Lepers) would hit the dark night spots of El Lay together, bonding over classic power pop and a passion for creating songs about ‘weird times going pro’ (as Hunter Thompson once wrote). Adding Justin Maurer (Clorox Girls, LA Drugz) on second guitar and James Carman (Images, LA Drugz) on drums, solidifying the line-up.
The band has four songwriters, Zache Davis (bass and lead vocals), Justin Maurer (vocals and guitars), Andrew Zappin (guitar), and James Carman (drums and backing vocals). Davis says of his tracks, “‘City Lights’ is really about the annoying dudes on the boardwalk who try to sell you their CDs. ‘Neutral Libido’ is post-relationship wave vibes mixed into a night of perceived bliss that ended in emptiness, and ‘Living in Stereo’ is a failed relationship.” He extrapolates, “Most of the songs I wrote are about a failing relationship, loss, and self-depreciation and realization; with some sprinkles of characters who play frisbee golf and some who lost money on a prostitute.”
For his contributions, Zappin infuses his compositions with hooks and atmosphere, and “I’ll toss in some oddball chord variations here and there to tweak what are otherwise pretty classic progressions. The same goes for songs to which I contributed parts. I try to serve the vision, put a little of myself into the thing. Ultimately, no matter who wrote it, everyone has a hand and all songs become MANIAC songs.”
Dead Dance Club was recorded at Station House Studios in Echo Park by Mark Rains; the band produced the album with Maurer taking a strong hand. As for Maurer’s own writing: “It’s current Los Angeles meets classic 70s/80s films like Blade Runner, Drive, Chinatown, LA Confidential, Over the Edge, Karate Kid, Lost Boys come to mind. My tunes come out of feelings of alienation, loneliness, heartbreak, restlessness, sexual frustration. ‘Children of the Dirt’ is about ‘Lost Boys’-Peter Pan type tribal kids in a ‘Lord of the Flies’ situation. ‘Post Post World’ is about post-irony, how contemporary society doesn’t believe in anything anymore.” Dead Dance Club is whip-smart rock ‘n’ roll art created out of their surrounding milieu: “I love West Coast lit, film noir, and Latin languages,” Maurer admits, “the mix of cultures in Los Angeles. Where else would you have Koreans eating Salvadoran food across from an Armenian kebab shop and a Thai grocery store?”