ForceField On
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ForceField On

Band Rock Singer/Songwriter


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"The Teeny Tiny Orchestra"

ForceField ON are a California pocket indie-rock symphony—a band so gigantic that guitarist Jesse Wilder once made all seven members submit press photos from individual sessions at the Alex’s Bar photobooth, instead of spending seven hours shuffling seven schedules to get seven people to show up and pose for headshots in someone’s backyard at seven PM. But ForceField ON’s numerical superiority works best instead when all seven share the same stage—a band reinforced with a dedicated brass section (twin trombones!) for a sound borrowing moments from Motown and Merge.

“Or Huey Lewis and the News!” says Jesse—ha but no, and instead they’ll try to remember Tortoise album titles or talk about Harry Nilsson’s surreptitious resurgence of influence (Jesse: “My mom named our cat Nilsson . . . ”) and then the time Harry Nilsson and John Lennon went drunk to the Troubadour with tampons taped to their heads and got thrown out for drunken scuffling and tampon misapplication. (“I always loved that story,” says Jesse. “We need women to ground us, right?”) That’s a backward but natural way for drummer Brandon Laws to explain the band in his own way: “We’re all lifelong Beatles fans,” he says. “That’s an easy connection for me.”

Same for a lot of Elephant 6, who invented new adjectives for indie rock with instrumental scribbles and warm horn sections that took notes from Revolver with depth and diligence—for ForceField ON, says Jesse, it’s like working with a “teeny-tiny orchestra.”

“It feels good to get out of the traditional rock band ‘song song song song song’ thing,” says Brandon. “It’s really a challenge—everybody’s become way more musical.”

Their horn players are the new kids—Matt Guy from Maritime Academy on trombone and Internet-snared Corey Rudolph on other trombone, and then Zach Blair on French horn. But Jesse—who led his first band 10 years ago with Teen Heroes—and Brandon—longtime drummer in the metered funk Slippers—make up half the veteran combo core with John Sisk on guitar and Jake Berrey on bass.

Right now ForceField ON are on the last weeks of last year’s three song demo, the succinct sum of what the band likes most: rock with a dynamic span that runs from pinhole to panorama, piloted by Jesse’s understated vocals. You have to work harder for your space, Brandon says—so the ForceField horns make room between the rhythm and lead guitars, carrying the melody through the instrumental “Bahkeeny Masheeen” or giving Jesse a guardrail for the breaks in “The Con.”

Ten instruments (tamboura to French horn!) between seven guys lets ForceField ON play songs with closing-credits extravagance—five minutes that feel like two in the way Brian Wilson liked, or like Marvin Gaye would play once mid-level executives quit peeking into his studio.

“One of my favorite records is the Marvin Gaye soundtrack to Trouble Man,” says Brandon. “It starts with an orchestra, and then it’s a funk tune, and by the time the vocal drops, it’s so perfect—you’ve been waiting for it. How many times when the vocalist starts are you like, ‘Ehhhhhhh’? Like Rush? Or Led Zeppelin—if Robert Plant kept his mouth shut, man, they’d be awesome.” - The District Weekly

"ForceField ON at The Prospector"

Here is an ambient / shoegaze wake-up call loud enough to last the entire month of May: ForceField ON is invading. Get your shoes on, brush your teeth and jump over your roommate’s pile of month-long “I’ll do it tomorrow” laundry and head straight for your front door—and in your best Paul Revere voice, scream, “ForceField ON is coming!” With experimental jam-band songs such as “BahkeeneeMasheen,” and the more somber, lyrically provocative “Mental Notes,” it’s no wonder the Long Beach band’s loyal local following is so excited for the release of Forcefield’s first album on Hey You Come Back With My Records. The band played the city almost non-stop during the month of April at local venues such as Prospector, and during March at Alex’s Bar with Spaceland favorites Minor Canon. Ask yourself what kind of a people could sustain a hungry city so unfailingly, and your answer is Jesse Wilder, John Sisk, Brandon Laws, Jake Berry, Matt Guy, Corey Rudolph and Zach Blair. Your answer is this band—a force to be reckoned with, to say the least. (JG) - L.A. Record

"Old Skank"

It’s tempting to write that Forcefield On sound like ska when it grows up and gets serious, though that feels a little lazy. But any band that features long, stretched-out horns you could sleep in like a hammock and band members who are known to be former skankers would make you think that. The Long Beach sextet projects such impeccable craft (all-analog warm on their debut, Llipsspill) that you want to find a neat descriptive phrase to match the compact way they mix slide guitar, tear-in-your-beer bar piano, softly bumping bass lines, smart lyrics, and those horns into a grand concoction that goes in your ear smoothly. Maybe it is grown-up ska. Maybe it’s the second cousin of AM-radio classics. Maybe you should hear for yourself. - OC Weekly

"Forcefield On"

ForceField On - [Long beach, CA] - The trombones are the centerpiece of this chamber-indie band, whose members have a wild range of credits with other artists (Calexico and Lampchop to All American Rejects and Neville Staple of the Specials.] they're true. honest. not trying to be the latest thing. it's on! - Advance Copy

"ForceField On - Llipspill - CD"

(ForceField On) Taking a cue from Spoon these guys have a very 70s sound with a lo-fi sound augmented with horns and a piano in the forefront. Actually all the songs seem to be in a minor key and have a slightly sinister and dark tone to them, so maybe they are the anti-spoon? Kudos for the palindrome.
-- Grog Mutant (2008) - Chicken Fish Speaks

"What I'm Listening to.."

I always like it when a band member is credited as playing “etc.” It generally means two things. First, that the band is young and probably wrote the copy themselves without the benefit/annoyance of working with a copy editor. Second, that I don’t have to pretend to understand what’s going on, because they’re not telling anyway.

Forcefield ON is a Long Beach outfit that credits six band members playing everything from the guitar to the french horn (I’m pretty sure that’s a french horn). Llipspill sounds like a bunch of ska fans decided to make a pop album. The opening number, “You’ve Been Had, Part A” has enough piano in it to give it more of a big band feel, but Llipspill’s most prominent instruments are definitely horns and guitars. The album as a relaxed feel to it, and Jesse Wilder’s vocals have a mellow tinge that allow them to slip into the background when the instruments really take over. The lyrics have an intimate, jazz lounge feel to them, and are just a bit too constructed to be truly conversational.

Standout tracks are “Adios Victrolas,” “Quality” and “Mental Notes.” - A Face in the Crowd

"Forcefield On llipspill"

not available online. Paper publication only.

- L.A. Record

"Forcefield On CD Release"

Forcefield ON have been bouncing around Long Beach for some time now, building up a strong local following and even getting airplay on Indie 103.1.

Now, finally, they have an album you can buy. Llipspill, released March 22, is available at Fingerprints in Long Beach and through the band's Myspace (where coveniently you can also listen to the songs).

Explaining music is always tough, it's easy to throw out "It's a cross between Elvis Costello and Sufjan Stevens but with a little bit of They Might Be Giants and Arcade Fire thrown in for good measure" or use nonsensical terms like "Baroque pop" or "No Wave" and such, so I'll just say, if you haven't seen them play, look at that picture above, tune in to their Myspace, and listen. It's easy to do with the internet.

Seriously though, they're great, if you like melodies and crescendos you'll like them. And they're great live.

Get at it, help support truly independent music.

If you haven't seen them play yet, your chance comes April 20th at Alex's Bar as part of the Fidotrust Fest showcasing Long Beach music. And we'll have free ice cream there! - Ice Cream Man

"at the Prospector"

“Jesse Wilder (Vocals/Guitars) led the charge with his heart on a sleeve lyrics and backed by the trombone section. John Sisk (Guitars) was channeling moments of Burning Airlines and Hey Mercedes with his guitar riffs. "Adios Victrolas" is a good example of their unique mix of horns and slide guitar work.” - Little Radio - Little Radio


Thunder Road EP - 3 song demo
llipspill - Full length Album 2008
Track 2, Adios Victrolas, heard on KROQ, Indie 103, and Star 98.7



Off the beaten path of passed projects and musical relationships, ForceField ON only has one objective; to accomplish the task of writing completely from the heart. If you think it sounds like something else, that could be accurate, music has grown immensely, and is always going to be somewhat duplicated. If you feel that is sounds like nothing you've ever heard before, that would also be correct. All I can promise you is this; everything created by this band is orchestrated from the inside to the outside. Call it Folky, call it Singer/Songwriter, call it Indie Rock with Horns, but I think in the long run you will call it enchanting. The group's name comes more from a secluded feeling than an outer space adventure. Turning your force field on at the end of the day and concentrating on yourself.

Weary of incorporating the new standards of Indie Rock with trends such as "The New Disco Beat" or "The Monotone Vocal", ForceField ON brings you the life of soft horns to an already pleasantly moody atmosphere of song, sometimes reminiscent of Elvis Costello or even The Flaming Lips. Straying away from too much distorted guitar, they bring you an orchestration of instruments equally being heard and not fighting for attention. With sliding guitar, horn pads, and ambient background knick-knacks, this is equivalent perhaps to a teeny tiny orchestra, without disregarding any meaningful rawness to the sound.

The background on this band is almost like a maze. Singer/Guitarist JESSE WILDER, Lead Guitarist JOHN SISK, and Bassist JAKE BERREY have been musically joined for over 14 years in a series of different projects. Whereas Wilder and Drummer BRANDON LAWS have a different history of touring Europe with the likes of CHRIS CACAVAS (Green On Red), STEVE WYNN, CALEXICO, LAMBCHOP, BARBARA MANNING, and THE WILLARD GRANT EXPERIENCE. Trombonist MATT GUY was snagged up by Sisk at a local Long Beach club called The Prospector where he was performing with his band MARITIME ACADEMY. Trombonist COREY RUDOLPH was found over the Internet, during a search of local horn players, and turned out to be an amazing fit for the band.

If you look into some of the members’ past credits, you may find bands such as THE ALL AMERICAN REJECTS, TEEN HEROES, NEVILLE STAPLE (of The Specials), and even a gold record for co-writing with REEL BIG FISH. But don’t be fooled, ForceField ON is a vast departure from any of this.

With their fan base rapidly growing as well as their progression in music this group is on the move in a lot of directions, including their full length release due out Spring of 2007. If you have any questions regarding Forcefield ON you can contact them at the address below or to get a real grasp on the sound, go see them play. Thank you for your time.