My First Earthquake
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My First Earthquake

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF
Band Rock EDM


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



"Bandwidth: My First Earthquake"

Bandwidth: My First Earthquake
Delfin Vigil
Thursday, December 20, 2007

This San Francisco indie-rock band certainly knows how to shake things up. That was immediately apparent during the group's first practice when, during one song, a quake shook the rehearsal space, and singer Rebecca Bortman lost her seismic virginity. "The name stuck - we like the mix of geology, sexual repression and Fisher Price allusions," says Bortman, who was shaken away from singing in a "noodling metal band" by co-songwriter Chad Thornton. Drummer Andre Salcido completed the trio after quitting the "trucker punk scene," in part because he wanted to stop wearing "those silly trucker hats." My First Earthquake spent about a year writing songs and practicing in a Tenderloin basement. Now, My First Earthquake's epicenter seems to be the Mission District, where they've played Amnesia, the Knock-Out and the Make-Out Room. "One of our band members works at Google," says Bortman, mentioning that all three members are perfectionists, possibly because they are all designers. "If Googlers stopped coming to our shows, our audience would decrease by a third." Band members aren't sure what they sound like. Sometimes they sway back and forth with a simple indie-pop sound. Other times, an aftershock may strike the audience when the band suddenly shakes, rattles and rolls - or performs "stop 'n' go rock 'n' roll," as Bortman describes it. "We like to mix up our sound," says Thornton. "Sometimes we're stripped down and punk, other times we're thickened up with synths, sequencers and samplers. We're not afraid to bust out anthemic hooks. At times we wish we had a long curly-haired guitar shredder from '85 at our disposal."

Lineup: Rebecca Bortman does melodic stuff: sings and gyrates spasmodically onstage; Chad Thornton does harmonic stuff: keys, bass, backup vocals; Andre Salcido bangs on the drums.

1. My First Earthquake's music should be filed between:

Things are better in narrative form: One cold VAMPIRE WEEKEND, my DRESDEN DOLLS came to life and gave me THE BLOW with their FLAMING LIPS. I felt a BIG CHILL run from my toes to my BLONDE REDHEAD scalp. My knees got BOWIE. I looked into the MIRAH as I heard a RATATAT at the DOORS. It was a MOTLEY CRUE of my MATES OF STATE all wielding METRIC-ly calibrated SPOONs. We brought THE ZOMBIES down with scalding HOT CHIPs. DIE KREUZEN.

2. The soundtrack to what movie would your music best match?

"Wet Hot American Summer." It's hot summer love that keeps you smiling and laughing as it gets more bizarre, twisted teens making out with campers and referencing astrophysics. HOT!

3. If you could collaborate on a song with any person, living or dead, who would that be?

Rebecca says: Elvis circa 1956. He was so talented, handsome and suave. And think how cool I would be if I was impregnated by him. Our song would be white-socked danceable rock 'n' roll at its best. And our baby would have strong hips.

4. If a junior high school asked you to play a cover song at the next talent show, what song and school would you choose?

Rebecca: The very genteel and gentile Peters Township Middle School in Pennsylvania (40 minutes outside Pittsburgh). I would definitely want to cover the Motorhead metal classic "Eat the Rich" or the holiday classic "Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel."

5. What is the meaning of life?

Have a good time all the time. And don't get busted.

Check them out:; Next gig: 7 p.m. Saturday. With Charles Gonzalez. $8. 21 +. Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd St., San Francisco. (415) 647-2888.

- Delfin Vigil, - San Francisco Chronicle

"New Band! My First Earthquake tomorrow at The Knockout"

Last night I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek of a great local band, My First Earthquake. The threesome, Rebecca Bortman, Chad Thornton and Andre Salcido, create a get-your-ass-up-and-dance vibe with their sparse but totally hip riffs and beats. Combined with snarky comments between songs, the occasional ten-second, semi-improvised ditty and Rebecca's robot moves, the trio is a lot of fun live.

The band name is oh-so-appropriate. During their first rehearsal in summer of 2006, there was an earthquake. And, as their website grandly proclaims, "Baby, that's how MFE was born. The womb left us hungry to make you dance." This ethic is reflected in many of their songs, my favorite of which is "Sweet Frown" that you can hear on their MySpace page.

My First Earthquake will play their FIRST show tomorrow night at The Knockout with The Aerosols at 9:30. MFE will play around 10:30 or 11, so be there. There's no way you can still at this show, and I implore all you music fans out there to give opening bands a little more energy, eh? "Come for the dancing. Stay for the structural integrity." - The Deli

"MP3 of the Day: My First Earthquake"

With mainstream pop music getting studio-perfected to the point where we’re losing character for production clarity, a band like My First Earthquake possesses vintage charm. The San Francisco act is all about the pop – singer Rebecca Bortman comes from the Debby Harry lineage of leading ladies, and her bandmates buoy her accounts of a “Designer Boyfriend” or “Hot Girlfriend” with simply keyboard melodies and a kicky ‘80s beat.

But since they’re still in the relatively early stages of bandom, their lo-fi aesthetic adds to the group’s charm. The band is about to release an EP, Tremors, at the Make-Out Room (an appropriate venue, it should be noted, for the subjects of My First Earthquake’s songs) on Sunday, June 1. Today they’re our MP3 of the Day band, and we have “Sack Lunch” here for you to check out.
– Jennifer Maerz

"My First Earthquake release debut EP"

And they celebrate this release with . . . drumroll please . . . an EP release show this Sunday, June 1st, at the Make-Out Room. The show starts at 8:00, and $7 gets you in to see the EP-releasers in action, plus Master/Slave and DJ Carlstone Rock closing the night with a post-punk dance party.

This first EP from My First Earthquake, entitled Tremors, is totally fun and infectious. The six tracks are adorned with plenty of synth and hip-shaking bass lines, making for a continuous stream of well-executed, straightforward indie pop. So visit the band's MySpace, go to the show on Sunday and experience the music live, and then purchase the EP by clicking here. You'll be rewarded with extended versions, B-sides and remixes, along with tales of strawberry tarts. That last part may or may not be true.
- The Deli

"My First Earthquake: album release show Saturday @ Cafe Du Nord"

The members of San Francisco’s My First Earthquake come from very different backgrounds. Two members used to play in metal bands, one helped develop essential parts of the iPod, and the other used to play in a band with We Are Scientist’s Keith Murray. With so much experience and diversity, it is only natural that the group have taken it upon themselves to release their own debut album, Downstairs. Their record release show goes down Saturday at Cafe du Nord (9:30, $10) with Blue Rabbit and B and Not B.

Downstairs is a display of the do-it-yourself spirit culminated. A notable track on the album is “Vow to Vowels.” With its catchy dance rhythm, organ melody, driving bass, and infectious vocals, one can’t help but get out their seat and shake it a little (or a lot). The whole album treks across the landscape of tight-synth induced dance pop, making a promise out of the four musicians abilities as a group. You can pick up the new album at the show. - The Bay Bridged

"College News album review: My First Earthquake"

“My First Earthquake has instantly jumped to the front of my playlist and has the talent and emotional mix to remain in the top spot. I could not recommend picking up this album with any more insistence. It’s not a question of if they will be a break-out success, but when.”

“Quirky yet successful choices abound for My First Earthquake. Their electronic backgrounds reminded me of the countless hours spent on my Nintendo during my early years. Obviously a pleasant memory, Earthquake combines my nostalgia with my honest love for good music no matter what the genre.”
Entire article:

College News album review: My First Earthquake by Joe Anello

Electronic Indie rock doesn't get any better than My First Earthquake

After hearing only fifteen seconds of My First Earthquake’s debut album Downstairs, I was hooked. This energetic quartet exploded my eardrums with electric indie irreverence.

My First Earthquake is fronted by Rebecca Bortman, whose lyrics and vocal presence far exceeds any offering from the “pop punk” ladies of today. Bortman continues the tradition of strong front-women, following rock goddesses like Stevie Nicks, Joan Jett and Debbie Harry.

Rounding out Earthquake is: Chad Thornton on keyboards and bass, Dave Lean on guitar, and Andre Salcido on the drums. Each member of this San Franciscan foursome perfectly complements the other while maintain their own distinct voice, ensuring a finely blended rock smoothie. Think Garbage without the creepy goth vibe.

You will feel the first tremors with “Cool In The Cool Way,” an anthem for the odd and clumsy girl. It is the perfect first step to June 20th’s Downstairs release, introducing you to a band the likes of which you haven’t heard before.

“Clean Clean,” a track that sex-ifies domestication, manages to turn you on and make you laugh at the same time. “Meat-Pies” details the desire to literally eat chubby men and instantly becomes the poster song for cannibalism. “Mad Tight” covers the struggles of a woman and her rebellious dress.

As you can see, My First Earthquake covers subjects of the everyday societal variety as well as the absurd. Every of these ten tracks has been carefully crafted, making it impossible for you to mistake one for the other. Normally I find about four to six songs from any given album resonate with me enough to stick with me after I’ve turned off the iPod. Every single one of Downstairs’ offerings lingers after the album is over.

Quirky yet successful choices abound for My First Earthquake. Their electronic backgrounds reminded me of the countless hours spent on my Nintendo during my early years. Obviously a pleasant memory, Earthquake combines my nostalgia with my honest love for good music no matter what the genre.

If you haven’t noticed, I haven’t said anything negative about Downstairs. That’s because I didn’t find anything to critique. The album is short, only clocking in at about twenty-eight minutes, but it doesn’t feel that way at all. (Don’t ask me how they managed to pull that off, but they did.)

My First Earthquake has instantly jumped to the front of my playlist and has the talent and emotional mix to remain in the top spot. I could not recommend picking up this album with any more insistence. It’s not a question of if they will be a break-out success, but when.

You can pick up Downstairs and the 2008 EP Tremors from My First Earthquake on iTunes and Amazon. They can next been seen performing in the Mission Creek Music Festival at San Francisco’s The Knockout on July 15th.

Check out their website for song snippets and band info. - College News


Upcoming album
Releasing Spring 2011

Crush (EP)
Released Summer 2010

Downstairs (full-length)
Released Summer 2009

Tremors (EP)
Released Fall 2008



My First Earthquake's bold, synth-riddled indie pop, rooted in Mates of State's angularity and Of Montreal's multi-instrumental jumpiness, places them in the same musical territory as the Kills, the Sounds, and the Blow.
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Based in San Francisco, and frequently touring the West Coast. We have a mailing list of 1800+. Shows bring 50-150 existing fans, depending on date and location.

Check out our numerous (and frequently-viewed) videos:

We sound a bit like: Metric, Mates of State, The Ting Tings, Matt & Kim, The Kills, New Young Pony Club, The Sounds, Cansei de Ser Sexy, and The Blow.