Playing in a pop band was not necessarily the anticipated career path for the four members of Cincinnati's Walk The Moon, which is currently blasting off with its self-titled national debut album -- which comes out Tuesday, June 19 -- and the single "Anna Sun."
"I was actually playing in a little more of a progressive band, kind of further out, a little more jazz-influenced," says guitarist Eli Maiman, who studied jazz at the University of Cincinnati while frontman Nicholas Petricca was also going to music school at Kenyon College. The two met when they were part of the same bill at a local show.
"Nick scooped me up to play in this band, and I think what turned me on from the beginning is that even though they're very hook-oriented pop songs, each one has a little bit of a left turn. There's always twist, something interesting that happens -- kind of in the tradition of bands like the Talking Heads and Electric Light Orchestra. They were doing hooky, catchy, melody-driven pop songs but the found ways to make them quirky at the same time, which is what I'm drawn to."
"Anna Sun," Maiman says, is named after one of Petricca's professors at Kenyon -- although, the guitarist notes, "it's not really about her, per se."
"The song is basically a series of images ranging from childhood through early adulthood," Maiman -- who, at 26, is Walk The Moon's oldest member -- explains. "The song was written at the end of our college years and tries to express, without saying it too directly, what you keep with your from childhood as you become an adult, and what you leave behind. It's meant to express a certain kind of nostalgia.
"There's actually Japanese term, 'mono no aware,' which means a gentle sadness at the passing of time. I think that's exactly what 'Anna Sun' is about -- although we're happy that people seem to be getting into that song."
Walk The Moon performs Sunday, June 16, at the iLounge in Clutch Cargo's, 65 E. Huron St., Pontiac. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12. Visit www.clutchcargos.com or call 248-333-2362.
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