Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 20 years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, and B-movies. Part time ninja. Kicked cancer’s ass. My memoir, ChemBro, is out now!
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A few weeks ago I caught Hartford, CT-based foursome Audio Jane at The Acoustic, in Bridgeport, and I was quickly drawn in by their ‘90s style shoegaze / dream pop sound.
By the end of their set I wasn’t alone in my fascination, as everyone in the venue was enveloped by the ethereal, yet slightly grunge inspired, vibe the band had created.
So who are Audio Jane?
Here are eight things you should know about the band.
There is no Jane
When asked about the origin of the band’s name, frontwoman Sarah Pech laughs, saying, “People think that I’m Jane, but I’m not.”
The band’s name comes from, of all things, an ATM.
“We were looking for a new band name and nothing was really working,” she remembers, “I was at a bank ATM and there was an audio jack, and it’s like oh, Audio Jane.”
The band was founded in 2016, but has gone through a few lineup changes
Sarah, and lead guitarist Mike Goldberg, started Audio Jane in 2016. Current drummer Mike Ciunci came into the fold a year and a half ago, and the band’s newest member, bassist Nate Harris, joined in the summer of 2019.
Their songs are a true group effort
Every member of Audio Jane is involved in the creation process of each song.
Sarah kicks things off using GarageBand on her iPad. “I’ll usually make a full demo with a drum loop,” she explains, “and I’ll figure out some guitar chords that I like, and then kind of figure out a melody, and then add words that fit.”
After the band hears the demo, Mike Goldberg says, “We’ll sort of decide, is this going to be upbeat, or mellow, and then Sarah asks me to add some atmospheric elements to the guitar – reverb, delays, and stuff like that.”
Mike Ciunci adds that for him, as a drummer, “The nature of the writing, and the style of how Sarah and Mike play together, allows for the creative freedom to either be open with it, or (have) more of an upbeat, driving feel.”
For Nate, being in a female-fronted band for the first time in his career has been a bit of a dream come true. “I’ve always been very drawn to female fronted bands,” he explains, “Neko Case, Laura Veirs, Mazzy Star – that’s who I’m singing along to in my car. So to get to add harmonies on top of that has been great. I’m really enjoying that.”
While Sarah’s lyrics are personal and emotional, they’re usually the final piece of the puzzle
Sarah says writing the lyrics for each song “pretty much always comes last,” noting, “I get the melody first.”
Digging deeper into her process, she continued, “Sometimes I’ll have maybe a piece of the lyrics I want to use once I have that melodic idea, but because it all has to fit in I kinda stopped writing the words first, because they weren’t fitting into the music, or the melody once it came, and then it was annoying because I was so attached to the lyrics, but they couldn’t fit how I wanted, so I stopped doing it that way.”
Their song “Ocean” was featured on The CW show Nancy Drew
This past fall Audio Jane could be heard on The CW drama Nancy Drew, as their song “Ocean,” which is off their 2017 album Naive, was featured on the show. When the band first received the news, one member surprised everyone with an unexpected amount of knowledge of the teen detective.
Sarah remembers, “Nate was throwing out all these Nancy Drew facts when we got on the show. It’s like, how do you know this?”
Nate’s answer – his daughter.
“My daughter started reading the books recently,” he explains, “She then got the audio books, which are read by (Laura Linney). But they’re good. I highly recommend them.”
With a laugh, he adds, “(Nancy Drew) solves every mystery, and the narrator tells you what she’s wearing throughout the entire thing.”
Drummer Mike Ciunci is an old school hip-hop head
Calling Rakim his personal choice as the greatest emcee of all-time, and having an album collection that includes EPMD, Public Enemy, A Tribe Called Quest, and Wu-Tang Clan, Ciunci is an old school hip-hop head, and he says if you listen hard enough you may catch some of that influence in his drumming.
“By the style of my natural playing growing up, playing jazz and playing hip-hop, it lends itself, and it will bleed in. I don’t think it’s prevalent, but there are little things you can probably pick up and hear.”
When it comes to those little things, he says, “While you may not equate the actual style, some of the techniques, especially for me, the way that I will hit my snare, there’s still some jazz and hip-hop influence in little triplet mid hits that you don’t necessarily hear audibly unless you’re really really listening to it.”
Sarah is reportedly a beast at Bingo
Don’t worry, the members of Audio Jane aren’t hustling your grandma at your local senior center’s bingo night, but if you see Sarah picking up a Bingo card, you might want to leave B-4 it’s too late. According to the band, she’s their big winner when it comes to bar bingo.
You’ve been warned!
New Audio Jane music is on its way sometime this year
Audio Jane’s most recent release was their 2018 full length effort, Letters, but 2020 is looking like a year of new tunes, as Sarah says, “We have a bunch of new songs that we kind of have fleshed out already, and we have a few more to go.”
With recording starting soon, there’s a chance Audio Jane could have a new album out before the end of summer.