Gig Seeker Pro



Band Pop Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Playful menace"

"You're my girl, and I should be your man But how can I kiss you when my head is in the sand?

I told your dad I'd try to pull my life out of the can He said, 'First things first -- you got to get yourself a band!' "

That dear old dad in the song "Criminal Offense" may not have had his daughter's best interests at heart, but he did have an ear for talent. Singer-songwriter Jonathan Newsome got himself a band called Miraflores. And while for all we know his life could still be a mess, the band has pulled its first album out of the can, and it's a pure pop delight.

Transplanted a few years ago from Savannah, Ga., Miraflores is a trio featuring Newsome on guitar, Travis Brown on bass and backing vocals and Neil Andrews on drums. The bright, cartoonish CD booklet to "Nobody Knows" shows a barefoot woman dancing happily, with plump, golden birds flying through thought-bubble clouds overhead.

At times the trio's sound fits such playful, idyllic imagery, most especially in the bubble gum bounce of "Louanne," which sounds like something Jonathan Richman might use to cheer up Marshall Crenshaw. Last week's CD-release show at Mississippi Studios even featured a guy dancing around in a panda suit.

But behind the cuddliness are undercurrents of menace that give the songs balance and depth. Newsome's detached, Morrissey-like croon obscures but doesn't blunt the ambition of the character in the opening track, "New Shoes," who vows, "you're gonna bow now, my faulty friend." Similarly, the buoyant melody and tongue-twister lyric of "Like Birds" deliver a jaunty tale of lovers reunited only to wallow in booze and despair.

In all, Newsome's persona comes across like that of such nerd-rock progenitors as Richman and David Byrne, among others -- social outsiders trying, sometimes too intently, to charm, weasel or will their way inside. If he's sometimes vaguely disquieting, he's mostly earnest, funny and sweet.

And, thankfully, he's pulled his head out of the sand long enough to step up to a microphone.

Marty Hughley - The Oregonian A&E (Mar 10, 2006) - The Oregonian

"College Rock Graduates To Next Level"

By BARBARA MITCHELL Issue date: Fri, Feb 24, 2006
The Tribune

Somewhere in the early 1990s, âcollege rockâ â with its smart, catchy, well-constructed but not overly slick nature â fell from grace in favor of its scruffier, more ironic cousin âindie rock.â
With the release of their debut full-length, âNobody Knows,â local three-piece Miraflores hark back to the good olâ days of college rock, when it was cool to wear your heart on your sleeve, possess musical skill and write darned good songs.
The album starts out ambitiously, with the yearning âNew Shoesâ clocking in at an epic six minutes and building from its low-key intro to a grandiose climax.
On songs like âLouanneâ and âGirls on Bikes,â the band channels the disarmingly dorky charm of Jonathan Richman, but itâs on the less goofy numbers that Miraflores shine brightest.
âNot Giving Upâ and âSons and Daughtersâ drip with longing and confusion. When Jonathan Newsome sings, âI tried so hard to be a stoic/and my efforts were almost heroic,â on the latter, you can almost feel the relief in dropping any pretense of being in control and surrendering to bewilderment.
Itâs engaging pop done with sincerity and artistry â and youâll have a difficult time dislodging it from your memory.
Although they originally hail from Savannah, Ga., Miraflores drop enough geographic and sociologically specific references to show that theyâve comfortably acclimated to life in the Northwest. Thatâs a good thing, as Portland should be proud to be home to this talented trio.

Barbara Mitchell - Portland Tribune - Portland Tribune

"Performer Review (West Coast)"

Miraflores Nobody Knows
Produced by Jim Brunberg
Mixed by Joe Chiccarelli, Jim Brunberg, Darren Bowls
Mastered by Ryan Foster

Initially, Miraflores appear to be a band focused solely on the key elements of college rock: catchy pop hooks, clever lyrics, and winsome and goofy photos on their website and in their liner notes. Landing in Portland by way of art school in Savannah, Georgia, the trio has released its debut long-player, Nobody Knows, drawing inspiration from masters of the pop hemisphere like Kleenex Girl Wonder, Bikeride, and the Elephant 6 roster. However, closer inspection reveals a sound that is less derivative than it is inventive, with jangly, concise melodies and a distinctive sound anchored by lead singer Jon Newsomes impressive vocal range and intricate song structures.

Louanne and Capital Offense are melodic pop gems, combining bashfully self-deprecating lyrics with simple, upbeat hooks and dynamic vocal harmonies. Girls on Bikes could well be the unofficial anthem for flea-market hipsters across the West Coast, proclaiming an affinity for country music in mono and girls on bikes and single-handedly capturing the ecstatic energy of a summertime crush unfettered by any other responsibilities or concerns. However, the group is not confined to brief bursts of inspired songwriting: Believer clocks in at well past the seven-minute mark while avoiding monotonous, meandering bridges in favor of a slow, coherent transition from a quiet bass-driven ballad to a rollicking celebration song. Likewise, Newsome easily negotiates the swoop from delicate alto to plaintive tenor over the course of Sons and Daughters, a lengthy, bittersweet ballad of regret and perhaps the finest display of the bands musical and lyrical abilities.

Full of starry-eyed love songs and odes to bottles of cheap whiskey, the bands references (both musical and lyrical) escape the trite, inside joke-driven prose that blights so many campus bands. Miraflores songs revel in pop simplicity, but manage to tie a sophisticated sensibility with irreverent lyrical wit, a feat that is by no means simple or simplistic. (Self-released)

-Connie Hwong - Performer Magazine

"This trio's pop succeeds and suffers from its other-townliness."

[POP] Miraflores frontman Jonathan Newsome sings like a wider-mouthed, American Morrissey, and his band weaves a jangly nest of mom-safe layered pop all around him. "I likes what I likes," he sings on the band's first full-length album, Nobody Knows, "Country music in mono and girls on bikes." For a Portland band, the lyrics seem strikingly un-Portland. Probably because the group moved here from Savannah, Ga., in 2003.

Aside from being un-Portland, Nobody Knows is frustratingly uneven. Even within the six-minute opener, "New Shoes," Newsome's voice bounces between sounding emotive and totally unengaged, the band between flat and dynamic. We aren't pulled into the song until the four-minute mark, when a climbing, distorted guitar pushes the group out of complacency and into an epic, hypnotizing finale worthy of a Thom Yorke head-wobble.

Of course, it takes a lot of energy to go from Marcy Playground to Radiohead in six minutes, and Miraflores can't sustain the effort, coming back down to earth just as quickly as it ascended. "Louanne," which the band's press materials call the "standout radio track," is undeniably catchy but about as deep as a VH1 special. "I'm so jealous of your friends/ And I'm so jealous of your trends," Newsome sings. Then he says "karate chop" for no reason at allâwhich is pretty great, actually.

Newsome is a very clever songwriter who shines on tracks like "Take It Back," where he dishes out charmingly heart-on-sleeve, omnipotent relationship advice. The band puts forth several show-stoppers as well, like "Sons and Daughters," an eight-minute track that stays compelling throughout, thanks to creative arrangements and varied instrumentation. If the group could only crystallize that song's last stand, with Newsome singing, "Snake in the baby's crib/ Smoke in the neighbor's yard" over sparse guitar shards and minimalist "doo-doo" backup vocals, Miraflores could carve out something really special for itself.

Being un-Portland isn't a bad thing, and Miraflores plays well-written, bright pop music that is refreshingly unpretentious. The disappointing thing about Nobody Knows is that the band seems tethered to the idea of making a record that balances their own, terribly alluring uniqueness with someone else's idea of what a great pop record should be. That's an area where getting a little Portland might just go a long way. CASEY JARMAN.

Casey Jarman - Willamette Week

- Willamette Week

"Live Review"

In this city of 500 bands, it's understandable that many acts are rarely, if ever, given the critical attention they deserve. To me, Miraflores seems to be one of the most underrated and talented bands that you (yes, even you) have probably never heard of. Why? Because, their blend of R.E.M. jangle rock and Jonathan Richman-esque charm is quite at odds with our city's prevailing taste for all things avant, electro, and experimental. That's not to say the latter aren't worthwhile too-it's just that every once in a while, it's nice to go to a club and hear 10 really good songs that you'll be humming for a week.

Kip Berman - Portland Mercury 08/05 - Portland Mercury


Nobody Knows (full length) 2006
Bird Of Danger (EP) 2005


Feeling a bit camera shy


Miraflores is currently recording a new EP. The band's last record "Nobody Knows" was produced by Jim Brunberg (Box Set, Dirty Martini) and mixed by Grammy winner Joe Chiccarelli ( The Shins, Tori Amos, Counting Crows, Elton John, Frank Zappa)
In 2001 the members of the band met and began performing while living in Savannah, Georgia (as a quartet, with cello). There they made quite a splash on the independent Savannah scene with their arty, early compositions.
In 2003 Miraflores left their jobs, dropped out of art school, and moved to Portland, Oregon to pursue the rock'n roll dream. Their cellist was tied to the East Coast by way of the Australian Olympic Team, and could not move westward with the band. This made a huge impact on the musical direction of Miraflores; the stripped down instrumentation shifted their focus to more of a pop-rock sound, but the trio still leaned towards their art-rock habits in some of their more substantial songs.
After settling in their new home, the EP "Bird Of Danger" was recorded in true Portland style; in a basement on an 8-track. Those six songs were unique and vibrant enough to attracted the attention of producer and Mississippi Studios founder Jim Brunberg, who literally said "I want to produce a full-length album with you guys." The resulting album, Nobody Knows, was recorded during the fall of 2005 and mixed that winter by Grammy Winner Joe Chicarrelli at Crossroads Studio in Vancouver, Washington.
The members of Miraflores still hold down their day jobs in Portland and play shows up and down the West Coast. Miraflores thinks that you are pretty cool and would love to hear from you.