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ELECTRIC HONEY / BAVE / BEN KEELER / THE PANDYS
December 8, 2017
Electric Honey is a Detroit-born indie rock band made up of Patrick Minjeur, Evan Gatny, John Labut, Chris Righi and Matt Doppel. Their sound is a raw, powerful mix of dynamics, superb vocal harmonies, and complex instrumental arrangements.
Electric Honey was created in the summer of 2014 in the suburbs of Detroit, MI in Patrick Minjeur’s kitchen, but the idea was dreamt up almost a decade earlier, when Evan bumped into Patrick at a church concert by chance. He was then living in Boston, attending the Berklee College of Music, and was visiting his parents for the weekend. Patrick was studying to be an engineer in the outskirts of Detroit at the University of Detroit Mercy. Due to their involvement with their shared instructor Stephen Petrunak and the American Guild of Music – a gathering in which students of all ages and instruments competed for trophies – they knew of each other when they were very young, but mostly as their respective competition. It took almost a decade to go by until they realized – at that concert – how closely their musical tastes had aligned and how much potential they had to create amazing, intricate music. The two had talked about getting together to jam, but life went on and they went their separate ways. Evan ended up living in Chicago, working for a clothing retailer and playing shows on the weekends when he could. Patrick took a job in Los Angeles partly because engineering work was scarce in the Detroit area, but more so because he was hoping to be discovered by his musical talent in an area teeming with artists. For a year and a half, the two had not spoken, but the idea was still in the back of their minds. Then, as the longing for his family, friends, and home grew larger every day, and his sunny, laidback, plastic lifestyle grew tired, Patrick decided to take a job back in Detroit and to reignite the hopes of making music with Evan.
John and Matt were no strangers, however. John was in two bands with Evan’s brother Michael in years prior; Socket, and Captain January. Both were tributes to the garage rock scene that dominated the 90’s. Matt was another acquaintance in this circle of church-going rock and rollers. His uncle Steve, the same Steve who taught Evan and Patrick how to play the guitar, had also given John singing lessons roughly fifteen years prior. The nature of Electric Honey coming together is best described as fateful. In a remarkable amount of decisions and life choices, John, Patrick, Evan, and Matt ended up wanting the same thing, and in doing so, they are making some of the best rock music of their time and encapsulating it eternally with their first full length album Vanadium which is going to be released later this year.
Vanadium is a combination of Patrick’s cryptic lyrics involving dreams, fictional relationships, and technology junkyism, and a song structure with rich vocal harmonies, complex guitar duels, and huge dynamic swings resulting in a sound that is rewarding and satisfying.
BAVE: Guitar and drums duo BAVE are a Detroit based experimental band focused on melody and technicality, without losing sight of those sassy, sassy grooves.
Ben Keeler was twenty-one when he moved from his hometown in Michigan. Amidst the unforgiving winters, thick summer days, and mid-western manners of Chicago, Keeler refined his signature sound. After graduating from Columbia College for Music, Keeler joined forces with fellow Chicago musicians and formed Ben Keeler and the 500 Club. When he wasn’t performing, Keeler could be found aboard sailboats… on Lake Michigan, teaching music to kids, coaching Little League baseball, and working on movie sets. The Windy City treated Keeler well.
Now Keeler is back in Michigan, playing bass in Ryan Dillaha & the Miracle Men and re-starting his own songwriting career here in Detroit.