Choosing which of the 120+ bands playing at this weekend's Bend Roots Revival to spotlight was difficult.
With a wide array of talented musicians in Central Oregon and many new bands popping up all the time, there was no shortage of options. After listening to their debut EP, "War of Love," I knew I wanted to talk to the dudes that make up new Bend-based band AM Clouds. I met with Pete Ficht, bassist, and Bruce Moon, lead singer, songwriter and guitarist, on the patio outside the Source's building.
"It started when Bruce and I were introduced last year at a party," Ficht says of the band's beginnings. "We had both moved here from Portland and were both musicians. It turns out we had both played with one of the same people. It was just a really weird coincidence. Bruce mentioned he was sort of thinking about starting a band."
Both seasoned musicians, Moon and Ficht started playing together. When they started looking for a drummer, they turned to Craigslist and connected with Dan Paggi. Ficht met Graham Boostrom through their kids at school. Also a musician, the two hit it off, so when AM Clouds decided to add another guitarist, Boostrom came onboard."He was just in the band, it had been really great chemistry. Just a good mix of people," Ficht says. "We've all been frontmen of our bands, all multi-instrumentalists, all family men."
he band has been woodshedding for the last year and over the spring and summer recorded its first EP. The band members say they learned a lot during the writing and recording process for "War of Love" and are ready to hit the ground running with the next group of songs.
"I've done most of the songwriting. We have a pretty collaborative process when it comes to hashing it out as a group," Moon says. "Pete and all the guys in the band contribute to arrangements and harmonies. It's great to have a fresh set of ears on songs. When you share them with other people, they have a fresh take and unattached view. It's a collaborative spirit."
Ficht, Moon and the rest of the guys can't wait to start playing live with the songs they have prepared over the last year. Their performance Saturday afternoon at the Bend Roots festival will be their first public performance as AM Clouds. They look forward to performing live and meeting other bands in the community. If all goes well, they'll get some good local shows lined up in the near future.
Want to know more about the '90s-esque, indie rock performed by AM Clouds? Check out our review of their EP, "War of Love" from last week's issue.
Saturday, Sept. 30. 4:15pm
Red Bird Stage, Bend Roots Revival
SW Shevlin-Hixon Dr, Bend.