“I had my eyes closed the whole time,” said Drone Dimension’s lead man Jonathan Beadle after the band’s debut performance last week. “It was that intense.”
To put it simply, Drone Dimension is an unusual band to hail from Tampa. That can be deduced from the band’s debut album Faintly Acquainted, which draws influences from bands like Sonic Youth, Slowdive and The Dandy Warhols.
The problem with up and coming bands is they can talk up their influences while falling well short of that level. So much so that you have to wonder where the influences are. Between Drone Dimension’s freshman album and debut performance, the band seems to have something more to offer than simply trying to mimic their heroes.
Beadle’s closed eyes throughout last week’s show at Orpheum wasn’t merely first-timer nerves getting in the way of his band’s first show, it was a sincere swelling of artistic passion.
It’s the kind of passion that, when mixed with musical savvy, creates the kind of rock album one can listen to all week and then find a new reason for liking it during the next. Faintly Acquainted is also one of the year’s best albums that, unfortunately, may not get the kind of national attention it deserves.
“We want to go as far as we can. I’m in this 100 percent, and it’s the first priority in my life,” Beadle said. “I think we have an excellent chance because not many bands are doing what we’re doing, especially in Tampa.”
Tampa is not the extent to which rock stars aspire to conquer the world, and Drone Dimension’s sights are set on a global level. But they also want to create a bigger and better world for any Tampa artists with ambition.
“I want to help create and be a part of a vital art scene here in Tampa. I think we have a lot of untapped resources … [We could have] something similar to Andy Warhol’s Factory if there’s focus on it,” Beadle said.
Beadle, who produced his own album in his bedroom, also played most of the instruments and co-wrote FA with bandmate and USF sophomore Rebecca Lima, who plays guitars and sings as well. Rounding out Drone Dimension’s line-up are USF students Soraya Zaumeyer on synthesizers and vocals and Scot Becker on drums.
Drone Dimension is scheduled to play again next month. If it’s anything like last week’s performance, audiences can expect sonic, ear-splitting action where catchy, danceable melodies swirl like moths around a campfire.
Although the band isn’t playing for another few weeks, Faintly Acquainted can be found at Vinyl Fever and Sound Exchange.
By all rights Drone Dimension is a group that would rarely visit Tampa if the band wasn’t from here. They’re just starting to put themselves out and Tampa residents can see the band at a cheap cost.
After the intense focus of the nine-song set, it was surprising to see less of a fatigued look than a post-coital catharsis on Beadle’s face. Before the show, earlier in the evening, when asked what he’d do if his music did not work out as a plan A, Beadle replied, “This is my plan B.”
Audiences can plan on Drone Dimension to add an element to Tampa’s music scene that’s been sorely missing.
Drone Dimension plays April 7 at Orpheum. Tickets are $5. Doors open at 8 p.m.