Photo by Matt Wignall

Photo by Matt Wignall

 

Laying on the floor of his unfinished basement studio in Beachwood Canyon, Graham Bockmiller realized it was time to go out on his own. The LA-based band Great White Buffalo had run its course, leaving him unsure what would come next. Graham spent the next year holed up inside his studio by himself; contemplating life, writing, collecting nude calendars of Eastern European women suggestively holding large trophy carp, and experimenting with the raw recording skills he had taught himself. Inspired by artists like Queens of the Stone Age, Foals, and HEALTH, he began exploring new sounds and textures outside of the traditional rock staples of guitar, drums, and bass – testing the limits of his DIY recording chops in search for a more interestng, vibier sound. These songs would later become the beginning of Yacht Punk.

Graham tinkered on demos until a chance meeting with Michael Pozzi (guitar) at Davey Wayne’s on Hollywood Boulevard. Michael was all-in on the project after visiting the studio and hearing where the music was going, and they were soon joined by Graham’s roommate Tricky (drums, no discernible first or last name) and Justin Ricard (bass). They took the demos to producer and indie-rock guru Matt Wignall’s (Cold War Kids, Mando Diao, J. Roddy Walston and the Business) eclectic Tackyland studio in Long Beach. In his converted garage studio (where “Hang Me Out to Dry” was recorded), Wignall took the music to further and weirder places with his unique production black magic. Afterwards, the band brought the tracks back to LA, where they were finished with mixer/engineer Will Brierre (The Killers “Hot Fuss”).

So here it is. Yacht Punk sounds like Stephen King’s movie Maximum Overdrive took a handful of downers. It has something to do with free-basing weed wax off nice silverware you heated up on an electric stove. It’s drinking daiquiris out of a hollowed-out pineapple at a vampire bar, flying on acid. It’s doing hippie-flips in the desert while eating steak dinner with a roommates’ retired relatives, having a black dumpster cat named Mazzy Star, and destroying another pair of white Converse. No, they don't ride on yachts and they don't play punk.