Early success is an exciting thing for any band, but with it comes the added pressure of keeping the momentum going. The Rocketboys were facing that early on, juggling a hectic schedule in support of their releases, the critically-acclaimed 20,000 Ghosts (2009) and their follow-up EP Wellwisher (2010). Reviews praised the band’s expansive, luminous sound, and the vocals of frontman Brandon Kinder. It was like night and day, compared to their quieter beginnings in Abilene. The band had been touring literally non-stop, with an itinerary that included several festival appearances. The stress of such a busy lifestyle became overwhelming, and three members left to pursue other projects. Kinder knew it was time for a break.
Although good things came out of the situation, including a solo EP for Kinder, the hiatus was looking more like a breakup. However, the three remaining band mates – Kinder, keyboardist Justin Wiseman, and bassist Josh Campbell – decided instead to rebuild and refocus. It was a long and difficult process, but the collaboration paid off. Last year, with new band members Josh Rodgers and Kyle Samuel, The Rocketboys released the rather aptly-titled Build Anyway, lush and sweeping atmospheric pop that is also an emotional reflection of the highs and lows of their experience.
The Rocketboys are playing the Fun/Andrew McMahon aftershow tonight on Stubb’s indoor stage, 801 Red River. Doors open at 10 p.m., immediately following Fun’s performance in the Waller Creek Amphitheater. Stick around for the aftershow, because The Rocketboys are worth checking out. Recommended.