Serene Lakes
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Serene Lakes

Band Alternative Rock


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"7/26 show at Bottom of the Hill"

In many ways this aptly named local trio makes music that seems informed by the Northern California landscape itself — at once dramatic and pastoral, topped off with shimmering guitars and wavering vocal melodies that almost sway in the breeze. For sure, the band nods to the canon of sensitive mid-'90s pre-emo post-rockers, building tunes around the layered wash of guitar and unrelenting rhythmic underpinnings. "September Summer," from their self-titled EP, has the markings of a seasonal SF theme song, with its ellipsoidal start and foggy heartache. Seeing the young band deliver it live, with their quietly confident performances, delivers on the record's promise, making for a serene experience indeed. (NVB)
- Flavorpill

"EP Review"

Serene Lakes - self-titled EP

Recorded and engineered by Aaron Prellwitz at Tiny Telephone, with assistance from Phil Manley
Mastered by John Greenham at Paul Stubblebine Mastering & DVD

Reviewer -Beren Huett

Oh precious, dreamy pop, where would I be without you? For that matter, where would millions of heartbroken, lovelorn teenagers be without you? Call it emo or whatever you want, there will always be a place for this style of music, and Serene Lakes are better than most. The San Francisco-based trio can certainly be compared to other bands (Jimmy Eat World, the Get Up Kids) that have made names for themselves by backing introspective poetry with post-hardcore/rock and gentler pop. But what sets Serene Lakes apart from the crowd is the art-rock fuzz encasing many of their compositions ("Telephones," "Dreaming in French") and the high quality of their lyrics. "TallBeam & Coke" is one such example: "Take the long way home / so I can smoke alone / and think of reasons / I'm driving home alone / with empty heart and empty head / we fall asleep in empty beds." It's simple, direct, and romantic without stooping to clichés. The songs can all be called moody, even the country-tinged "Dreaming in French." Some of the vocals are mixed low, and this pushes the instrumentation to the foreground, forcing the listener to choose between focusing solely on the music and forgetting about the lyrics, or sticking their head directly in front of the speaker and indulging in both music and lyrics. Either way, it takes some work. "Last Call" recalls the early '90s incarnation of the Smashing Pumpkins, with its effects-drenched guitar and fey vocal stylings very reminiscent of a pre-megalomaniac Billy Corgan. Drawing a line from early Pumpkins as an influence, one can also hear a little Sonic Youth and even My Bloody Valentine in some of the more distortion-racked moments. Like the lyrics, the music is also direct and evocative of its predecessors while maintaining a charm all its own. It will be interesting to see where Serene Lakes head next artistically, and what they have in store for a full-length album. (self-released)
- Performer Magazine

"EP Review"

Splendid Magazine Review - 1/26/2005

URL to review:

Understated vocals are typical of indie rock bands, but Serene Lakes' sense of melody sets their music apart from like-minded acts. These Bay Area musicians keep it low-key, which is a good decision. "Tall Beam and Coke", a shoegazer-like dronefest that's similar to My Bloody Valentine's work, is one of the band's strongest cuts. Its love-and-loss theme treads the same ground as their other songs, but lyrics like "Take the long way home / so I can smoke alone / and think of reasons / I'm driving home alone / with empty heart and empty head / we fall asleep in different beds / left in the dark to ponder words I never said..." represent the band's most thoughtful songwriting. On "Dreaming in French", the band switches into full-on pop mode, with powerful drumming and brash guitars. It's a successful combination of the band's laid-back California style and a hint of British rock. Most of the album's other tracks follow current indie-rock standard style: they start out slow, and build in intensity. Still, it's a widely used formula for a reason, and Serene Lakes prove themselves skilled in its execution.

-- David A. Cobb - Splendid Magazine

"EP Review"

Serene Lakes
Self–Titled EP

by Kendra MacLeod

Serene Lakes plays the kind of music you want to hear at the end of the night when you’ve had too many drinks, and your ears are ringing from all the other loud–ass bands you heard earlier. Their name says it all and their music can arouse nothing but fond memories of the ex you now hate, lulling you to sleep as your crumpled beer can falls to the side of the bed. With a slow buildup of instrumental introduction, lead–singer Dino’s vocals roll smoothly into each song, juxtaposing mournfully pensive lyrics with rising drums and bellowing bass guitar, endearing Serene Lakes to the hearts of indie rock lovers everywhere.
- Mesh Magazine


Serene Lakes - Self Titled EP.

LP in the works.



Hailing from San Francisco, Serene Lakes lay down gentle melodies intertwined with distorted harmonies that will melt your heart and induce feelings of love lost. They have played dozens of shows since 2004 in and around the SF Bay Area and Pacific Northwest, at notable venues such as Cafe Du Nord, Bottom of the Hill, Mezzanine, Chop Suey in Seattle, the CMJ Music Marathon in New York and most recently headlined a show at the Mission Creek Music and Arts Festival in San Francisco. Serene Lakes have played with such bands as Vells (mem. of Modest Mouse), Headphones (mems. of Pedro the Lion and Starflyer 59), Man of the Year, Love Like Fire (ex mems Stratford 4), Crystal Skulls, The Ex Boyfriends, etc... The three-piece recorded a six song demo at John Vanderslice’s renowned San Francisco analog recording studio Tiny Telephone with sound engineer Aaron Prellwitz who was responsible for recording such bands as Sun Kil Moon, alaska! and Hella. This recording has garnered Serene Lakes very positive reviews from print and online magazines such as Performer Magazine, Splendid, Mesh Magazine, Flavorpill etc… They have been played on local college radio stations such as KZSU Stanford and KFJC Foothill, various iTunes radio stations and are also in rotation and on the top of the charts on the award winning internet radio station, Bagel Radio, as well as others. With label interest as well as a full length in the works, the road ahead looks to be a bright one for Serene Lakes.