Salinas rockers release heavy pop-punk CD.
Thursday, March 30, 2006
The three Elderkin sisters—20 year-old Beth, 22-year-old Christine and 17-year-old Faith—spend lots of time together. They live in their family’s home in Salinas. They watch movies with one another. They go antique shopping as a trio.
They also play punishing metal and punk riffs with drummer Miguel Ramirez in a band called Third Eclipse.
Before forming Third Eclipse as teenagers, the sisters had already accrued experience in the music business. As Next of Kin, they played what they describe as “little kid pop” at community events and fairs.
As the young women started to grow up, they got interested in more aggressive music. “Essentially, we adopted rock when we became better musicians,” Christine says.
In 1997, they traded in the keyboard-laden sounds of Next of Kin for more guitar-driven sounds. While most groups implode within a few months, these girls obviously have a bond that extends beyond playing music. “I think the reason we have stayed together so long is because we are incredibly close,” Beth says.
Now, after playing gigs from San Jose’s Voodoo Lounge to Salinas’ Cherry Bean Coffee Roasting Company, the group is releasing its debut album, the 10-song Guest Parking Only. The CD, which took three and a half years to finish, was recorded in Sasaulito’s Boomtown Studios and produced by Jeffrey Cohen. Cohen is primarily known in the music business for co-writing Aretha Franklin’s “Freeway of Love,” which won him a Grammy in 1986. The Elderkins met Cohen through a former manager. “Jeffrey really seemed to get our sound,” Beth says.
Most of Guest Parking Only features songs like “Waiting,” which have dense riffing that gives way to airy, poppier choruses. “Headstrong” starts with a battery of chunky guitar but goes into an infectious chorus recalling female ‘80s acts like The Go Gos. “And You Go” is basically a pop number with a bit of a rock sound.
Christine says that having a repertoire of faster, harder tracks and slower numbers is one of Third Eclipse’s strategies. “We like to be versatile,” she says. “A lot of different people can like you if you have different sounds.”
Though the young women believe that the band has gotten even harder since recording Guest Parking Only, Beth says that the CD is basically where they discovered their musical direction.
“Our sound is continuing to evolve,” Beth says. “I think we finally found our hook. The CD represents that.”
After two CD release parties in Salinas and Monterey, the band plans on trying to expand their fanbase by playing lots of gigs from here to Silicon Valley. In the future, they hope to relocate to Los Angeles.
THIRD ECLIPSE celebrates the release of Guest Parking Only at the Lava Lounge in Club Octane, 321 Alvarado St., Monterey, Thursday at 9pm. No cover. 646-9244. Third Eclipse plays another CD release party at the Cherry Bean Coffee Roasting Company, 332 Main St. in Salinas, this Friday at 7pm. Free. 424-1989.