Light FM
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Light FM


Band Alternative Rock


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"Save the Drama EP review"

Light FM is a huff of cosmic dust from a planet far, far away. Lead by Josiah Mazzaschi, the crackpot mastermind behind the legendary Chicago unit Motorhome, this hypnotic array of perky zingers are fueled by maddening keyboards and gooey electro-pop that combines for a sizzling salvo like The Cars crashing a surprise party for Devo. Light FM's sparkly new EP Save The Drama is the quintessential fuse of 80's synth-pop, disassembled and rearranged in the 2007 digital age with all of the glamour and celebrity of the smoking hot stars in Los Angeles as its supernatural backdrop. Mazzaschi's handsome vocals reach an altitude of heavenly falsettos that only a Sherpa in the Himalayan Mountains could ascend to. With a tackle box of audio accessories ranging from the bleeps of vintage Atari 2600 games, TalkBoys or any eclectro gizmo dug up from grandpa's dusty attic, sonically enhance this "buzz band" according to the LA Times, who are desperately in search of landing their rocket ship on the roof of an intelligent label to breed a new species of machine-pop tarts for future millenniums. -

"Light FM is returning, decidedly more muscular"

Rumors of Light FM’s demise were not exaggerated — Josiah Mazzaschi had fully intended this spring to move on from the moniker under which he made music dating back to his Chicago days and the 2004 debut, “This Is the Beginning of My Golden Age.” Now, after aligning with the MySpace Friends & Family Network in hopes the company’s artist development program will give his music the marketing muscle it’s never had, Mazzaschi is sticking with the Light FM name, and sound.

Less than a year after his underpromoted second album “Black Magic Marker” was released on the small indie label Devil in the Woods, Mazzaschi has another album ready. Aptly titled “Let There Be Light FM,” it’s a powerful 13-track array of sticky melodies, crunchy, fuzzed-out guitars and synths on steroids — imagine the Cars or MGMT with the sonic biceps of radio rockers such as Shiny Toy Guns. Yeah, Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots with Moogs.

“After South by Southwest, I was leaning toward changing — a lot of it frustration from not being able to hold a band down,” Mazzaschi says. “I’d had the name since Chicago and I felt like I had a lot of baggage I was carrying around with it.”

What did change was the L.A. quartet’s lineup. Mazzaschi is now flanked by Nicole Fiorentino (Veruca Salt, Spinnerette) on bass, Byron Reynolds (Sea Wolf, Possum Dixon) on drums, and Canadian newcomer Sophia Male on keys. “Let There Be Light FM,” though, was largely a one-man production — Mazzaschi, who works as a studio engineer, laid down his new tracks in late-night sessions, and the album reflects a guy who’s unafraid to pull out all the stops, from layering the synths to liberal use of vocal effects. (”I don’t know why people have a problem with Autotune,” he says good-naturedly. “Whenever I hear somebody singing out of tune, I wish for it.”)

The album has its tender moments — Mazzaschi knows his way around a pop song — but impresses most with its tempered bombast. “I hope it sounds like what the old Light FM wanted to sound like,” he says. “We’ve always been a little heavier live, but I’ve never been able to capture that on record.”

Tentative plans call for “Let There Be Light FM” to be self-released in October.

-Kevin Bronson 8/19/09 -

"SXSW live review 5/1/09"

Light FM from Los Angeles took the stage. Singer/songwriter/guitarist Josiah Mazzaschi has crafted a guitar and synth driven sound that is somewhat reminiscent of bands like The Cars, The Rentals, and Grandaddy. Light FM delivered a great set that featured material from their latest release Black Magic Marker. *Kim Haden*’s keyboards curled around the melodies, while *Brian Barbier*’s bass provided great counterpoint to Josiah’s buzz saw guitars. - The Big Takeover

"Echo review opening for Great Northern"

Chicago transplants Light FM could easily have their own residency after experiencing their tight brand of melodic rock, reminiscent of Pinkerton-era Weezer, Unrest, and Grandaddy. Singer/guitarist Josiah Mazzaschi nails it vocally while churning out big guitar melodies and distorted bliss. The rhythm section of bassist Brian Barbier and Drummer Harry Trumfio hold down the fort with a feel that matches Josiah's delivery perfectly. The songs are so catchy and clever you could almost imagine them getting major airplay -

"Echoplex w/ Earlimart"

Light FM kicked off with “16 Below,” a rock-driven jam from the band’s debut album, This is the Beginning of My Golden Age. Utilizing dreamy synthesizers, heavy drumming and a wall of guitars pounding away in perfect unison, the four-piece played a flawless set of tightly-performed songs to its many supporters in the crowd. - West Coast Performer July 2008

"LA Times 7-19-07"

California, here we come
Light FM plies its sunny power-pop,

FM carried from the Windy City

Ah, California. Sometimes it's best viewed as a mirage. "Darlin' darlin', we're movin' out to California / where the weather's warmin' and there is no attitude," Josiah Mazzaschi writes in his song "Save the Drama." It was a couple of years ago, and the Light FM frontman was making a mark in Chicago, where his quartet's Moog-heavy power pop was earning comparisons to the Cars, Weezer and the Rentals.


"I was definitely wrong about the attitude," Mazzaschi says now, a bit sheepishly, "especially now that I've worked in Hollywood."

Not that he regrets heading west. He remembers meeting Earlimart's Aaron Espinoza in Chicago, "and he was all for me moving out here," Mazzaschi says. "I ended up working in the studio right next to his studio."

Mazzaschi spends his days working for producer Dave Trumfio as an engineer at Kingsize Soundlabs (neighbor to Espinoza's studio the Ship). And he spends some off-hours at Kingsize too, working on the follow-up to Light FM's unfailingly catchy 2004 album "This Is the Beginning of My Golden Age."

"Just being around some of the [musicians] I've been around is inspiring," Mazzaschi says. "I'm the kind of guy who tweaks stuff forever; I need to figure out when something is finished."

For now, the reconstituted (from its Chicago days) Light FM, with Brian Barbier, Kim Haden and Harry Trumfio, is playing the Monday residency at the Silverlake Lounge. - LA Times

"Black Magic Marker review"

"Loneliness is next to godliness," sings Josiah Mazzaschi on the title track, before launching into the chorus, "My heart has fallen apart!" The entire album sounds like an excitingly dysfunctional marriage between the Cure and the Cars, merging manic music with depressing lyrics in a way that makes heartbreak seem like the most ecstatic experience a young man could go through.
There's a refreshing lack of irony throughout the album, and the band plays all the pathos with a straight face. Regardless what experimental side trips they take, they always return to a tightly written hook and cheerful chorus. On "The High" a peppy back beat pushes the song into a frenetic ode to the effects of a chemical imbalance. Anxiety has never sounded like so much fun and Black Magic Marker reminds us that sometimes the best emotional remedies are hyperactive melodies that make you want to dance through your depression. - Blurt online

"Black Magic Marker"

Equal parts The Cars, Weezer, and MGMT, Los Angeles popsters Light FM roll together all the guilty pleasures of New Wave and SoCal pop into tight, concise compositions seemingly stuffed with sunshine and exhilerating booty-shaking rhythms. Don't let that fool you though. With distortion drenched guitars, blistering solos, and lyrics that address self-loathing, isolation and California warmth, there's definitely a dark edge buried beneath the soft surface. Contained within packages of great pop songwriting and an eclectic mix of sounds and influences, the group's music is simultaneously accessible and intriguing. With vocals that delightfully recall The Cars and the Cure, fuzzy explosions of guitar distortion, buzzing synths, video game electronics and beachy falsetto backing vocals, the music takes the power-pop of early Weezer and colors it with the pulsing bass and synths of late Eighties pop. The occasional psychedelic interlude, Arcade Fire-style anthematic buildups, and abrupt texture changes augment the band's pop formula and keep the listener on edge. A residency last summer at the Silverlake Lounge and a year of heavy rotation on the local scene have transformed the group into a tight and polished unit surrounded by plenty of buzz. At least on the surface, Light FM makes exhilarating feel-good music that's equally great on a summertime convertible joyride or on the dance floor. The dark undercurrent manifests itself later through repeated listens, and makes for music that's more than what it initially seems to be. In the meantime, better grab your sunglasses for this. Upcoming gigs include July 19th at Glendale's The Scene and July 24th at Copper Rhino in Modesto. - Hannis Brown - delimagazine

"Earlimart's top Ten of 2007" -

"Light fm @ Spaceland"

There’s something special about the way feet look while dancing in black Converse—something slightly caterpillar-like—it’s as though something has happened at the ankles, like they’ve become unhinged. It allows the rest of the body to move in a more fluid way than it does when dancing in, say, cowboy boots or some other rigid form of footwear. I don’t spend my free time thinking about the physics of feet and shoes, rather, this is an observation I made at the Light FM’s Monday night residency (which continues until October 28th) at Spaceland, where I witnessed one of the most impressive displays of Converse-clad dancing I have ever seen.

Light FM, the brainchild of front-man Josiah Mazzaschi—who started the band while living in Chicago but has since re-located to Los Angeles—played the hell out of their new self-released record Let Their Be Light FM, which was not a surprise but was an impressive feat seeing as Mazzaschi only recently solidified his backing band, having played all of the instruments himself during the album’s recording. The five-piece, who have only played together for a few shows, were unbelievably tight, and seemed completely comfortable (albeit hot and maybe a little sweaty) playing underneath Spaceland’s multi-colored lights.

Speeding things up early on with totally radio-ready anthem “Friends Aren’t Friends,” Mazzaschi set a cheerful tone for the show, letting the lyrics fly over the crowd, who bopped along in that way only the driving melody of a pop song can make you bop (particularly one man in the front, the aforementioned Converse dancer, who perhaps bopped along harder than the rest of the crowd). Following “Friends Aren’t Friends” with “Black Magic Marker” from the band’s previous album, the crowd began to sing along and I realized, suddenly, that this was one of this first shows I’ve been to in a while where it seemed as though everyone in the venue was actually watching the band play with rapt attention, not looking around for people they might recognize, drunkenly making puppy eyes at a cute lady or gentleman, or some similar pursuit of the only semi-connected reveler. Each song jammed along harder than the last, and the combination of Sophia Male’s spacey, happy-go-lucky pop synths; Mazzaschi’s high, classic indie rock vocals; Nicole Fiorentino’s tight bass; and Byron Reynolds’ near-perfect drums, made for one of the best pop shows I’ve seen in a long time.

The polished performance combined with Mazzaschi’s casual stage presence, singing each song flawlessly and giggling while talking to the crowd, made it feel as though Spaceland was filled with his entire family and closest friends, while also feeling like we were in the presence of a band that really knew its stuff. The performance seemed incredibly earnest despite the musicians’ obvious mastery of their craft—which often leads to musicians coming off as disaffected and their performance seeming off-the-cuff and careless. Instead, Light FM revealed themselves as the best kind of band to see live—genuinely talented and committed to playing their songs well, but also fun and filled with youthful energy. It was clear that all five members of Light FM put their hearts into it, and the crowd certainly did the same. All you had to do to was look towards the front row, where you would find the most enthusiastic pair of dancing Converse in all of Los Angeles.

—Maud Deitch
- LA Record


2004 debut "This is the Beginning of My Golden Age" Electronic Battleship records/ Minty Fresh records.

Songs have been played on Chicago's Q101, WLUW, 93XRT, Los Angeles's KCRW, Indie 103.1, and KROQ. Tracks have been placed on the WB's, One Tree Hill, MTV's, "The Hills", ABC's Wildfire, and Life as We Know It.

2007 "Save the Drama EP" Moonboot records/ Minty Fresh
Songs have been aired on L.A.'s Indie 103.1, and KROQ. Check out the Tripwire review in our press section. Music placed on MTV's, "How's Your News".

2008 Black Magic Marker released 10/24/08 on Devil in the Woods/ Nocturnal Records. Songs featured on Fox's "Dollhouse", and the CW's "Gossip Girl". Interviewed on "Locals Only" KROQ, received airplay on the BBC, NME radio, Virgin France, Indie 103.1, and KROQ.

2009 "Let There Be Light FM" third full length album. Label: to be determined.



Born in the clutches of art school angst and bitter Chicago winters, Light FM began as a beacon of hope for song writer Josiah Mazzaschi ­ a poppy bouquet of cheerful songs with meaningful yet dark lyrics heavy on retro synths and grand orchestration. Quickly gaining a name in the Chicago indie music scene as one of Chicago's most promising new bands and being compared to The Cars, The Cure, Pink Floyd and The Rentals. Light FM's first release, "This is the Beginning of my Golden Age" was heralded as "the post-punk antidote to radio's latest disease" (Time Out), a band that "pushes the bounds of sonic experimentation while at the same time making their songs catchy and accessible." (Daily Herald)

When Light FM moved to LA and released "Black Magic Marker" on Devil in The Woods Records, the band's accessibility, emotional depth and high production value soon attracted popular Hollywood shows like "Gossip Girl", "The Hills", "The Dollhouse", and "One Tree Hill". Returning to his indie roots, Mazzaschi is currently self-releasing his third album, aptly titled "Let There be Light FM" ­ with the promotional support of Myspace Records "Friends and
Family" program. Full of "sticky melodies, crunchy, fuzzed-out guitars and synths on steroids" ( Light FM is returning to the stage with a residency at Spaceland in LA in October, also sporting a new lineup. After playing SXSW, the band took a break and regrouped with bassist/singer Nicole Fiorentino (Veruca Salt, Spinerette), drummer Byron Reynolds (Sea Wolf, Everest, Possom Dixon), and keyboardist/singer Sophia Male. "Let There Be Light FM" will be available on iTunes October 13, 2009.