Bootleg Theater Presents
Cones, BUZZY LEE
2220 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90057
This event is 21 and over
You know the curious, almost out-of-body feeling you sometimes get when you wake up in the middle of the night, where everything seems a bit fuzzy and you’re not sure if maybe you’re still dreaming? It’s a state Greta Morgan perpetually revisited during the second half of 2015, when she was writing and recording the new Springtime Carnivore album, Midnight Room. “I was on a really jagged sleep schedule,” says the Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter, describing the months during which she worked on the follow-up to her critically adored 2014 debut. “It was the first time I’d ever lived by myself, and there was this bizarre feeling at night of the house being so quiet and being so totally alone. And Midnight Room came out of that.”
Earlier in the year, Morgan went through one of those break-ups that completely topples your world. Though it was as amicable as those things can be, the twenty-eight year-old musician felt shattered. She began working on songs for Midnight Room during those strange waking interludes last summer, finding an abundance of beautiful melodies in the melancholy ether. “A lot of lyrics on the record are collaged or don’t necessarily make sense next to each other,” she says. “But I guess my whole headspace was like that for a few months. I felt like I couldn’t trust my memory completely -- like I was space cadeting through the weird space between sleeping and dreaming and waking and reality.”
The melodies came easily, but the words were initially harder to find. So she tried a new approach for Midnight Room’s lyrics, inspired by her own disjointed thinking during those months. When an intriguing phrase or evocative image occurred to her, she wrote it down on a piece of index card. Sitting with the dozens of scraps on the floor in front of her, Morgan would rearrange the fragments until she found a way to make sense of it all. “A lot of the themes are, like, ‘How do you lovingly change a relationship?,’” she says. “How do you say good-bye to someone in a certain way and still keep him or her in your life? I feel like I was asking a lot of questions during the making of the record that I still don’t really have answers to, but at least some of the songs were exploring that territory.”
In the interest of achieving a more cohesive sound for Midnight Room, Morgan reached out to producer Chris Coady, whose work with Future Islands, Beach House and The Orwells she’d admired. “To me, Chris’s greatest gift as a producer is creating a sonic palette for an album that really brings their songs to life,” she says. “I wanted the whole thing to feel like you’re looking through a cobalt blue glass, and to get textures that almost feel like being able to see stars in the sky. I wanted it to have this very velvety midnight blue purity to the sound, and I feel like the synthesizers that we used and a lot of the guitar tones we used evoked that kind of visual texture.”
Jonathan and Michael Rosen have been brothers their entire lives, and now they are also Cones. Growing up in San Francisco, the brothers were as close as could be – spending their free time eating cereal.
Jonathan was infatuated with pop music from day one. He cried when he realized Elvis was dead. He would build cardboard drum sets in his room and play along to the Bee Gees. In contrast, Michael had a technical and academic approach to music. Trained in piano and composition, he studied in the classical tradition, writing his first opera at the age of 16.
The two brothers are based in Los Angeles. Jonathan is an acclaimed hand-drawn animator. He has created music videos for such artists as Toro y Moi, Eleanor Friedberger, and Delicate Steve. His rock and roll dream was born on the set of HBO’s Vinyl, when he played the role of Johnny Thunders. Michael is a commercial/film composer and experiential sound artist. His fiercely technical brain works in collaboration with his heightened ear to create beautiful and strange sonic environments.
The two brothers first started playing music together while living in NYC. Jonathan joined Michael’s band Icewater. Eventually, Icewater began playing as the session and backing band for Eleanor Friedberger (of the Fiery Furnaces), helping to write and tour on her latest record New View. While on tour, Jonathan and Michael conceptualized a new project. One that would fuse Jonathan’s pop sensibilities with Michael’s lush soundscapes and key-heavy orchestration. One that would rely on an entire lifetime of brotherhood – sounds that Jonathan could draw and images that Michael could hear.
In the summer of 2016 Cones recorded their debut EP Whatever You’re Into in their Los Angeles studio, collaborating with friends old and new. They called the band Cones because orange is Jonathan’s favorite color and he loves the shape of cones as well as putting them on his head and running around.