The Interstellar Elevators, a CT-based band, started in the 2009 as a bona fide band of brothers. The jazzy-funk group is made up of six high school seniors who have traveled as far as California to perform. Incredible, eh? The boys were finalists in the nationwide/famous contest School Jam USA this past year (sponsored by NAMM, the largest music tradeshow in the country) and although they didn’t go home with a huge victory, they sure-as-hell came close.
The sextet describes their music to be jazzy-funk/hip-hop. The creator of the band is Billy Rodriguez-Lopez, the acclaimed MC, guitarist, turntablist, songwriter and lyricist. In ‘09 when the band first emerged, Billy intended for the group to be a more pop-oriented group, but undergoing metamorphosis, Billy and The Interstellar Elevators quickly fashioned what I like to call, jazzy-hop. Good friend and band-member, Vincent Simboli, said that Billy has described his songwriting is inspired by “the city of Philly, plastic Poland Spring Water Bottle Caps, The Cohen Brothers, Talib Kweli” and a hint of “Dr. Seuss.”
The Interstellar Elevators have carefully collaborated an assorted set of instruments to create the perfect meld and balance between jazz and hip-hop. With friend of mine, Vincent Simboli on percussion and keys, Campbell McClintock on the guitar and keys, Jake Strauss on bass, Stefan Rehr on drums, and Austin Alianiello on the sax, the boys distinctly combine their unique talents into one melodic marvel. Some of the band’s greatest influences are Philly’s neo-soul band, _The Roots, Brooklyn rappers Black Star, and Queens hip-hop group, A Tribe Called Quest.
The band kind-of recently released their EP, Paper on Plastic in September of 2011, and is now available for the small fee of $5 on Bandcamp.
All in all, The Interstellar Elevators are a good listen and will not at all leave you disappointed. So, if you’d like to know what English indie-rock band, Arctic Monkeys, or LA based band, Rage Against the Machine would sound like if they adapted white-boy-hip-hop, give The Interstellar Elevators a shot.
Personal favorite: “Better Reasons”
Find the Interstellar Elevators Bandcamp page here: