The music from the up and coming rock band, Aviatic, radiated through the black walls, while fiery lights escaped onto the hundreds of fans who sang along at The Roxy Theatre on Sunset Blvd. on Sept. 17.
Aviatic took the audience on an uplifting musical journey with nine songs including “Goodbye Beautiful Day,” which was recently added to Yahoo music’s top 10 Adult Alternative list. Aviatic is the only unsigned musical group on the list.
Sebu Simonian, lead singer and keyboardist, and Ryan Welker, guitarist and backing vocals, are CSUN alumnis who met in music school.
At first, they formed their own band, but later joine with Barrett Yeretsian, drummer, and Clint Fedderson, bassist, to form Aviatic in Sept. 2004.
“You could tell they were really passionate about their music,” said senior biology major Brooke Huval. “I really enjoyed their show.”
Aviatic recently gained lots of publicity and exposure.
They were one of eighty bands that competed throughout the summer at Universal CityWalk’s Jam Fest 2005 in Hollywood.
Among the twelve finalists who battled until the end on Aug. 27, Aviatic took home the grand prize of $5,000.
Many passerby’s stopped in their tracks to get a taste of the musical melodies that were escaping their instruments, while fans already knew the words and sang along. The excruciating heat from the radiant sun at Universal City Walk did not stop the crowd from growing larger when Aviatic took the stage.
“To win was very flattering, encouraging and exciting,” Simonian said. “We feel very proud and honored.”
The band’s musical influences range from classical influences, such as Chopin or Beethoven, to classic rock such as Pink Floyd and the Beatles.
Simonian said even modern bands like Radiohead and Depeche Mode have inspired Aviatic.
Yeretsian said Aviatic, the band name, which pertains to flight, was named after a hotel in Paris.
“I see our music as giving that sense of flight to the listener,” Yeretsian said. “The songs are melodic, and we’re not afraid to explore the dynamics of music.”
Aviatic is actively seeking a record deal, and a number of record labels are highly interested in signing them.
“Arrival,” their new full-length album, was released Aug.13 at the Jam Fest preliminaries, and it is now available on the Internet.
Simonian and Yeretsian wrote most of the music, but all of the band members collaborated in the arrangement process.
Simonian owns Stereotrain Studios, a recording studio in Burbank where all of Aviatic’s music is produced and recorded. Simonian and Yeretsian also produce music for other bands there.
“We want to touch as many people as possible through our music.” Yeretsian said.
All songs played were original except for a Beatles cover “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.”
“We all agreed that it was one of our favorite Beatles songs,” Welker said.
A musical video for “Goodbye Beautiful Day” is presently in the edit process, and it will be available for viewing at music.yahoo.com.
“The song is about leaving a situation that you don’t feel comfortable in, and it has a universal theme of moving forward,” Yeretsian said.
Aviatic’s plan is to continue to write, play, record and gather support for the rest of the year.
Aviatic’s next venues are at the Frank Lloyd Wright Ranch in Malibu on Sept. 24, and at the Viper Room on Oct.15.
Simonian said the ultimate achievement for the band would be “to be able to establish a career for ourselves, so we can play music for the rest of lives.”
Kristin Mancina can be reached at ane@sundial. csun.edu