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Baumer

“It doesn’t have to be perfect like a movie scene/Love is almost always accidental.

From the cinematic elements of “Denouement” to the soundtrack worthy “Baumer vs. the Red Baron,” and the quintet’s unusual moniker (which comes from Luke Wilson’s tennis star’s nickname in The Royal Tenenbaums), Baumer is a group with its eyes on the big time—and the big screen.

The Columbia, South Carolina-based band was described by Guitar World as occupying a “musical purgatory between New Order and Nine Inch Nails,” Baumer’s sound came together with ...read more

“It doesn’t have to be perfect like a movie scene/Love is almost always accidental.

From the cinematic elements of “Denouement” to the soundtrack worthy “Baumer vs. the Red Baron,” and the quintet’s unusual moniker (which comes from Luke Wilson’s tennis star’s nickname in The Royal Tenenbaums), Baumer is a group with its eyes on the big time—and the big screen.

The Columbia, South Carolina-based band was described by Guitar World as occupying a “musical purgatory between New Order and Nine Inch Nails,” Baumer’s sound came together with humble beginnings. Guitarist Kenny McWilliams, was working in his garage-studio on a low-key solo project and invited Nate Boykin down to his studio to put some vocals on the recordings. When their forces combined, what started as mellow acoustic guitars and lounge beats morphed into upbeat, dance-able rock.

The more McWilliams and Boykin worked together, the more they began surprising themselves. “It wasn’t like anything we had done before,” says Boykin. “We didn’t really limit ourselves and we didn’t really have an agenda..

Working without a script, Boykin’s exceptional voice and pop-sensibilities combined with McWilliam’s fluent beat programming and guitar work fostered a somewhat dark, infectious brand of pop music. As McWilliams explains, Baumer’s dark hooks are the result of his collaboration with Boykin.

“I went through this whole stage where I didn’t listen to a bit of pop music,” says McWilliams. “When Nate and I first started working together, I was like anti-pop, and Nate comes in and he has a really good pop ear. The two of us working together is kind of what produces that because he writes some dark stuff too but a lot of that is me..

The studio success prompted them to self-release their debut, Come On, Feel It and form a full-fledged band. Baumer played its first show as a trio in May 2004, and now includes bassist Chris Corley, drummer Josh Kean and guitarist/keyboardist Chad Rochester.

The local success of the disc prompted an ally of the band to put a call into New Jersey based Astro Magnetics, a label owned and operated by the team at Eyeball Records (which includes Thursday front man Geoff Rickley). The label loved the record, and enlisted mega-producer Mike Shipley (The Cars, Def Leppard, Devo) to mix the epic Come On, Feel It.

It’s easy to see what Astro Magnetics and the fine people of Columbia and the rest of South Carolina fell in love with; Baumer made a cohesive and concise album with Boykin’s confident vocals soaring over tasteful arrangements that combine a perfect balance of drums, synths, guitars, and electronic beats. Combined with Boykin’s heartfelt observations on life and love, the end result is both modern and timeless. If John Hughes made the Breakfast Club or Sixteen Candles in 2006, you can bet that Baumer would have the theme song. « hide


Were It Not For You
2008

3.5
3 Votes
Come On, Feel It
2006

3.8
3 Votes

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