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Columnist Spencer Patterson: The day after... looks for exposure down South


"""
KC Wells works for a parking enforcement service, doling out tickets and placing boots on car tires.

He wouldn't mind earning a living doing something else.

If everything goes well for Wells and the rest of local rock band the Day After at next week's South by Southwest music festival, the 25-year-old bassist might be able to do just that.

"That's been the goal since Day One, to be able to be in this band full time," Wells said. "We've had a lot of really cool opportunities in the past, but this is definitely the biggest one so far, where we can showcase what we can do."

Mainstays on the local scene since the late 1990s, members of the Day After caught their big break last year when a manager for punk outfit Good Charlotte caught one of their shows at the Lounge at the Palms.

He encouraged the Vegas quartet -- Wells, Jenine Cali, Shaun Dougherty and Luis Cano -- to apply for a spot at South by Southwest, the prestigious annual event that draws hundreds of record executives to Austin, Texas, every spring.

In December, Cali, the band's vocalist and second guitarist, received an email invitation for the Day After to perform.

"It was kind of a shock when we got it," Cali, 26, said. "It's a huge step. Who knows what's going to happen, but there are lots of contacts to be made there."

The Day After performs one more local gig, around 11 tonight at the Cheyenne Saloon (3130 N. Rancho Drive), before driving to Phoenix for a show there on Saturday.

From there it's on to Texas, for a warmup performance in Pflugerville on Tuesday, and the main event at midnight on Wednesday at the Chuggin' Monkey on Austin's famed 6th Street.

Wells, Cali, Dougherty and Cano are planning to stay in Texas through next weekend, attending South by Southwest workshops and panels and seeing some of the other 1,000-plus acts on the massive five-day schedule.

With so many other hopefuls -- not to mention veterans such as Billy Idol, Elvis Costello and Erykah Badu -- playing the festival, how can the Day After catch the eye of the right record executives?

Wells says the band can do it with sheer energy.

"There's a passion about us that people respond to," he said. "When we're onstage playing, it's easy to tell that there's nowhere else we'd rather be. We're just real kids making real music."

The Day After also stand out physically as an unusually diverse group. Along with their female singer and black bassist -- Las Vegas natives who became friends as sixth graders at The Meadows School -- the lineup features a drummer from Mexico (Cano) and a Boston transplant on lead guitar (Dougherty).

"We have such an eclectic group," Cali said. "If you look at the picture or look at us onstage, you're gonna be like, 'What is this?' "

The Killers were Southern Nevada's lone South by Southwest participants a year ago, just as the Day After will be this year. But while the members of the Day After hope the two area bands share other similar fortunes, they are quick to point out an important difference.

"I'm happy that it's happened for the Killers because it shines a positive light on Vegas," Wells said. "But we don't sound anything like them."

Indeed, the Day After doesn't channel '80s influences, as the Killers do, nor do they use synthesizers.

If the four-song demo included in their press kit is a good indication, the Day After is grittier, and a bit heavier, though not difficult to grab hold of.

The Foo Fighters, A.F.I., At the Drive-In, the Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are just a few of the bands Wells and Cali mentioned as influences.

"To me, it's just straight rock music, man," Wells said. "We're just real kids making real music."

- Las Vegas Sun Newspaper


It's only ROCK 'N' ROLL by PJ Perez

It's only rock 'n' roll: The day after... transcends stereotypes of music and gender


BY PJ PEREZ

Running faster through the streets

Where we could lose ourselves in the headlights like stars

-- The day after..., "Headlights Like Stars"

Dynamic guitars. Driving rhythms. Melodic vocals. Poetic lyrics. Stage presence. All of the elements of a great rock 'n' roll band. Las Vegas' The day after... has garnered a lot of attention based on one element not mentioned above: a kick-ass female lead singer. But to focus on Jenine Cali's gender instead of the band's strength as a whole is unfair both to the group and to its fans, current or potential.

On April 17, The day after... debuts its new seven-song EP The Weight of All Things with a release party at Pink E's on West Flamingo at Valley View. KOMP 92.3-FM's Laurie Steele, whose weekly "Homegrown" radio program has helped dozens of new and unsigned artists get their music heard on the local airwaves, is hosting the show, which will start at 9:30 p.m.

The day after... has been seriously making its name and sound known in the Las Vegas scene for about two years, but the basis for the band formed in 1999 when Cali and bassist KC Wells began writing music together. They released an EP in 2001, and after recruiting lead guitarist Trevor Warnick and drummer Luis Cano, the band recorded another EP, Do You Feel Better Now?, a surprisingly well-produced and well-written effort given that the relatively young band recorded the album at its home studio.

On songs like "Burning Red" and "No Regrets," The day after... established a definitive sound, something familiar but original, and undeniably catchy. The new EP promises more of the same.

"Its pretty much the same formula," says Cali of The Weight of All Things. "The major difference between this record and the last one is that Do You Feel Better Now? was a mellower CD as a whole, whereas The Weight of All Things is high-energy from start to finish."

It has become par for the course in this society for female-fronted rock bands to fall under a certain amount of scrutiny, more than their all-male counterparts do. The day after... has not been immune to this phenomenon, though the band does not necessarily see the focus on Cali's gender as a negative issue.

"People don't expect a whole lot out of us when they see us for the first time," Cali says. "So it's cool if we get to surprise people. As for the press, it's really kind of helped actually. I think the press sees a girl playing guitar and fronting a rock band, and they're intrigued. So it has its advantages and disadvantages."

Pink E's, a bar known mainly for its wall-to-wall pool tables and cock-rock clientele, seems like an unlikely location for a band like The day after... to hold a CD-release party. Most of the band's shows are almost exclusively at 21-and-over locations, a fact that has not gone unnoticed by its members.

"There are some things about Las Vegas that aren't cool," Wells says, "namely the lack of things to do for the under-21 crowd. These all-ages venues come and go before you even get to go to them once."

The day after...

- Las Vegas CityLife


A surprising entrance from an up and coming, artist from the respective label Gotham Records, The Day After are no strangers to the scene. They have had their hands in several musical efforts that have stirred up some ruckus about them that has spread through the indie underground. With Strong influences from The Cure and The Smashing Pumpkins, it is always interesting to see what this trio from Las Vegas has up their sleeves. I'm sure what ever it is, it's always deadly.
"A Different Way To Get By" starts off with a quick jogging beat that spreads like an infection and forms "Brand New Skin." High pitched guitars balance out the soothing singing that the band nurtures and unleashes upon the world. The repetitive beat doesn't get old, but instead grows on you and sprouts visions of all the seasons in its progressive nature. A bass ballad at its core, "The Take Back" chimes in with classy echoed guitars and lovely vocals. For a trio, The Day after has a way of combining their sound as it feels like there are four or five members instead and this song is a great example of that. Waves of bliss splash on the shores and sprinkle on your cheeks. "Curtains" introduces a more upbeat song that has structure through a musical focal point that is built around it. The live ambient feeling is captured, as you can close you eyes and picture them on stage with the lights on the triumphant lead singer as she swoons the crowd. Lone guitars thump as a strong feminine voice spills her dirty secrets for "Breaking Bones." A clash of instruments climaxes as we are taken on a rollercoaster ride that stretches our faces to the point of submission. This form of unleashing all your strength and taking a short rest is weary on a soul, but for a song, it contrasts into a perfect sound. A joyful drum beat bounces along with a bass line that runs along with him as they pick up more new members in the form of a flashing guitar in "This Medicine." Reverbed guitars fill the skies with static and charge the clouds for the light show. Vocals are a true shining point and act like the star on a Christmas tree, illuminating the whole thing. A short intro shifts and turns with its jittery madness in "On The Clock."

A vibrating guitar starts off "Car Crash" as an addition of a traveling bass captures a fine woman’s voice in stone forever. The silent gentleness gives way to a cascading waterfall of sound that crumbles the stones at the bottom. Their signature start and stop persuasion continues with this influential selection. "Friends Are Enemies" starts off more upbeat with a piano in the background that catches the stumbling drums from falling. Heart felt lyrics scratch and grab at your arm in an attempt to stop you from leaving. A calm and warming beginning brushes over "No Regrets" as guitars plant their feet. Drums petal on and set the stage to the growing explosion. Emotional lyrics combine with firm vocals to deliver the work of art. Sections rupture under the pressure this song builds and then releases it upon the land. "Fit Of Jealousy" shapes with a shifty bass line and quirky guitars as cries beckon in the night. The song resets itself and continues into a spiral of pent up emotion that wants to come out, but feels that it would be useless. This section of the album feels like the release of aggression stage. The CD finishes with the turn around and walk approach of "In My Rear View." A gentle acoustic anthem guides this beautiful song along on its path of relaxation and redemption. Calm vocals and good walking music are a fine way to finish the album.

This album has a great atmosphere about it and is a true example of how great bands can be discovered by ambitious indie labels. With a likeness that sounds like old No Doubt, they add more and go further then them by incorporating a new sound that is rare to find in three teamed groups. This group is going places and for a good reason, they have created a new brand in the sea of sounds that is sure to be duplicated for a long time to come. I'm sure that their different way to get by, is the best way.

~ Pernell Fowler
October 18 2006
- SkylinePress.net


BANDS TO WATCH

When the Killers hit in 2004 with their debut, Hot Fuss, the band's Sin City roots seemed like a fluke. Then came Panic! at the Disco, and record execs started regarding Vegas as more than justa place to get an expense-account lap dance. Here is one of the town's hottest new bands:

The day after...

Sounds like: Foo Fighters, if Dave Grohl were a chick.

The Draw: A dense onslaught of guitar and wailing vocals that wears its rock & roll heart on its black-T-shirt sleeve.

Lean and Mean: This past summer, the quintet's longtime drummer quit and its lead guitarist also left. Ironically, the resulting three-piece signed with indie Gotham Records a few weeks later. - ROLLING STONE MAGAZINE


From your warm barstool, you watch a new band take the stage. You've never seen them before but their opening chords ring in clear and true and damn good. An instant connection between the ear and the instinct, this will be the band in which you rave testimonies. Here at ABSOLUTEPUNK.net, we like to provide you with that same tummy-filling. After we report the news and churn out the reviews, interviews and exclusives, we are here to serve you up with more music to obsess over. That being said, here are 100 blazing up and comers that we, the staff of AP.net, are losing sleep over. Caught between a rock and the big time, these 100 are aimed for a 2007 killing in potential alone. We toast our glasses to them, and to you, hopefully, for giving them a chance.

-Julia Conny


The Day After... - Hailing from Las Vegas, an environment that has bred synthesizer-based bands The Killers and Panic! at the Disco, among others, this band does not need a keyboard to enhance their sound as they make dynamic music that succeeds wildly where so many other bands have recently failed. Though it may sound like other bands that you've heard before, you're going to be left wanting more of this indie-rock hybrid. The vocals on their album, A Different Way To Get By, soar alongside the crashing instruments and mesh together to create controlled cacophony that truly conveys emotion that other bands lack. If you're looking for something new, yet something familiar, this is a band you should listen to.

- ABSOLUTEPUNK.net - 8/9/07


Josh Bell - May 21, 2009

Stalwart local band The Day After returns from a dalliance with indie label Gotham Records to self-release its latest album, Black Heart Symphony, the first with new drummer Daniel Kloza. Despite the lineup change, the band sounds mostly the same, delivering the solid alt-rock tunes that have been its stock in trade for nearly a decade. There aren’t quite as many immediate hooks here as there have been on past releases, but Black Heart grows in impact the more you listen to it, and songs like the title track and “A Tiny Dusty Arsenal” have an appealing intensity that builds over time.

The only notable departure comes on the opening instrumental intro and album closer “Leeches,” both of which feature Chelsea Davis of theSTART. Davis adds an electronic sheen to TDA’s guitar-heavy sound that hints at some promising potential for future developments. Bands like Silversun Pickups have proved there’s still an audience for fuzzed-out alt-rock, and Black Heart places TDA firmly in place to capitalize on that.
- Las Vegas Weekly


The Day After is exactly what a three-piece rock band should be. Bassist KC Wells -- with his punchy, picked lines -- and drummer Daniel Kloza -- choppy, upbeat-friendly rhythms -- provide an airtight, though flexible foundation for Jenine Cali's more linear, clean and delayed (a la U2's Edge) picking. And though the delay with which Cali crafts her guitar tones fills things in, The Day After's sound wouldn't have half the density without her soaring, earnest vocal stylings -- think Sleater-Kinney, Samiam, etc.

With Symphony, the band doesn't stray too far from the unique alt-rock sound it has molded throughout its previous four albums. Save the last track, "Leeches" -- an atmospheric, NIN-like number -- and the similar, instrumental intro, which nicely meets back up with the end of the last song when the disc repeats, the band sticks to the basics of (not too many) guitars, drums and vocals. Which, when done right, is all you need.

Jack Johnson - Las Vegas CityLife


by Josh Bell
1-26-06

Local scene veterans The day after... are a pleasant throwback to the solid alterna-rock of the mid-90's, sort of like the Foo Fighters with a female singer and a bit more fuzz in the guitars. Thier first full-length album is full of energetic rock songs, some of which (especially "Sing it Back" and "We Are Going Nowhere") could stand up to anything on the radio right now. They may be more workhorses than innovators, but the work they do is top-notch. - The Las Vegas Weekly


By Stephanie Nolasco


People have always been intrigued by a female musician who can grab rock n' roll by the balls and make it howl. Front woman Jenine Cali leads The Day After… with vocals that will leave you stunned. Cali screeches like an angry banshee, transforming into an aroused vixen with a soft and breathy voice. With each poetic line that makes up “a different way to get by,” Cali raises goose bumps with raw talent that puts her in charge of a male-dominated industry.

The Day After…a Las Vegas trio consisting of Cali, bassist KC Wells and drummer TJ, wows listeners with “a different way to get by,” which is a huge sigh of relief for the dying music industry. A blend of punk, indie and even pop, The Day After is the long awaited love child of Fiona Apple and Robert Smith. In “The Take Back,” each lyric flows as a piece of poetry, which is the root of all successful music. Each track from “a different way to get by” compliments each other, revealing frustration and endurance in being an unsigned band from Las Vegas. Each track, well layered with guitars, drums, a distant violin and cathartic lyrics encourages you to actually listen to the entire album.

The title “Friends Are Enemies” may fool you as another typical emo rant, but its orgasmic buildup of angry melodies will leave you yearning for more. Ultimately, you'll be satisfied by their victorious resurrection of The Cure's melancholy mood in “Car Crash,” a woman's plead in having her feelings understood. The album ends with “In My Rear View” an acoustic ballad with the empowering final lines “Was it how you needed me/Like I thought I needed you.”

The Day After… is a new chapter in the history of the current music industry, one that delivers promise to anxious listeners. Not only is it a different and necessary change, but it look a modern siren to reveal a brand new day.
- Stephanie Nolasco


Smash Magazine

By Farah Minwalla


The Day After. No not the birth control. Not the lead singer who is trying to impersonate Gwen. But the band that has and will continue to rock the local Vegas music scene and will one day headline with rock legends. For the past four years vocalist, Jenine Cali and bass player, KC Wells have dominated the art of Vegas venues and with the 2006 release of “A Different Way To Get By,” The Day After is back and better than ever. “This album has the best songs we have ever written,” remarks Wells. And indeed it is.

By making old school beats the new cool melodies, Cali brings a unique voice to the seemingly boring music scene. But don’t think The Day After hasn’t paid their ‘musical’ dues. The band has gone through the ringer trying to find the ideal drummer, but still hasn’t brought down this up and coming duo.

Even though the change of band members might affect The Day After’s music, they remain a force to be reckoned with because they love their job. “KC and I are simple people who get easily amused and content,” professes Cali. And for those who haven’t heard of The Day After, imagine a band that actually writes their own music, good music. GASP! Remember when bands actually formed good music? Yeah, The Day After does just that. With musical influences such as Placebo, Smashing Pumpkins, and Foo Fighters, The Day After is a pleasant mix of a lead singer who can belt out the high notes and can create mini stories throughout every song.

Since the majority of The Day After’s lyrics come from personal experiences, it makes this band more relatable to their ever growing audience. As the interview comes to an end with both Wells and Cali, I realize these people, besides their music, are extremely normal. It is this quality that transcends so well into their music and will continue to separate The Day After from the pack. Upbeat melodies and catchy guitar solos, The Day After has created a loyal fan base. “We appeal to a broad spectrum of people. Grandmas have been known to get down,” laughs Wells. And for devoted fans, don’t work. The Day After will be touring in 2007 and that’s a promise, just look on their Myspace. “Myspace is such a valuable tool, but it’s no merit for talent. I don’t think a band should be signed because they have ‘x’ amount of friends,” confesses KC.

So how should bands get signed in The Day After’s opinion? Learn what not to do, enjoy what you’re doing and be prepared for hard work. And that is coming straight from the horses mouth, since it took The Day After seven years to find their new home, Gotham Records. Who knows how much longer and much more work may lay ahead? One thing is certain, it’s only a matter of time until the groups music will be heard worldwide, the day before, the day of, the day after.
- Smash Magazine


Discography

Do you feel better now? - EP
- Track 1, "No Regrets" receiving radio airplay
- Both "No Regrets" and "Sleep When I Want To" used on E! Entertainment's "Vegas Showgirls: Nearly Famous 2"
- "Ashtrays and Cigarettes" and "Headlights Like Stars" receiving airplay on 107.5 X-Treme radio.
- "No Regrets" the 4th most requested song on 92.3 KOMP Homegrown show 2003
- "No Regrets" 10th most requested song on Area 107.9 Local show 2008

The weight of all things - EP
- "One Armed Bandit" receiving radio airplay
- "One Armed Bandit" voted 2nd most requested song on 92.3 KOMP Homegrown Show 2004
- "These Stolen Skies" in rotation on 92.3 KOMP Homegrown Show

Counting All the Upsets - LP
-"Fit of Jealousy"
*to appear on VH1's Save the Music Compilation
*played on KOMP 92.3 and KXTE 107.5 as of November 2005
*voted 8th most requested song of 2005 after being on air for only 8 weeks
-Counting all the Upsets being sold locally at Hot Topic
-"The Last Time" used on the Hyperactive Music Festival Compilation

"A Different Way to Get By" full-length record!!!

Available online at these fine locations:
Amazon.com, iTunes, Rhapsody, Barnes and Noble, Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, FYE, Waterloo, etc.

- "Car Crash" added on new video game Popstar Guitar to be released on Wii and Playstation 2 November 18th 2008!
- Played on over 160 college radio stations across the country and Canada and still receiving spins!!!
-"Car Crash" added to regular rotation on KXTE 107.5, Extreme Rock Radio and KVGS Area 107.9 in Las Vegas.
-"Brand New Skin" and "Car Crash" played on KOMP 92.3 Homegrown Show
-"Brand New Skin" was the 8th most requested song on KOMP 92.3 for 2006 after being added to the list for only 3.5 months!!!
- "Car Crash" #1 most requested song on KOMP Homegrown show 2008

"BLACK HEART SYMPHONY" LP

- Released May 2009
- "Black Heart Symphony" #2 most requested song on Local Area 107.9 FM for 2009
- "Lights Off" #4 most requested song on Homegrown show on KOMP 92.3 for 2009

Photos

Bio

"A dense onslaught of guitar and wailing vocals that wears its rock & roll heart on its black T-shirt sleeve." Rolling Stone Magazine issue 1010, Oct. 5th 2006!

"Great job on the disc!(Counting All The Upsets) You guys sound great! Thanks for throwing me a copy and good luck with the shows. YEAH, baby. Hope to see you on the road this year!" Brian Viglione, of the DRESDEN DOLLS.

Diverse. Unique. Fascinating. Just some of the words that have been used to describe this three-piece rock band from Las Vegas, Nevada…and that’s just they’re look. Being musically linked to such genres as alternative, indie/pop, post-punk, emo, college/easy, garage rock, they have found themselves put into just about every category that is even remotely rock related and the diversity of the bands in which it has played with has reflected that. The thing is that at one point or another, all categories have made sense.
With influences of Smashing Pumpkins, Radiohead, Face to Face, The Foo Fighters, Placebo, and Sunny Day Real Estate, The day after... has released two EP’s and released their full length "COUNTING ALL THE UPSETS" in 2005. After playing with bands such as Joan Jett, Angels and Airwaves, Hawthorne Heights, Soul Asylum, Face to Face, Eve 6, Local H and making a name for themselves at South by Southwest (SXSW) 2005 and 2009. After the release of their full-length album "A DIFFERENT WAY TO GET BY," The day after... is hard at work in the studio right now working on their new album "Black Heart Symphony" which has been self-released in May of 2009.

*BANDS WE HAVE PLAYED WITH:
Joan Jett and The Blackhearts, Angels and Airwaves, Hawthorne Heights, Soul Asylum, Veruca Salt, Local H, Eve6, Face to Face, The Killers, Bowling for Soup, Switchfoot, Five for Fighting, As Tall As Lions, Meg and Dia, Blue Man Group, Damone, Atreyu, Daphne Loves Derby, Tsunami Bomb, House of Fools, TheSTART, Ronnie Day, Eighteen Visions, One Line Drawing, The Movielife, Vendetta Red, Vedera, The Outline, Killola, Girl In A Coma, The Myriad, Brian Jonestown Masssacre...

*Showcased at SXSW 2009
*#1 staff pick for 2008 on Area 107.9 for local bands
* "Car Crash" most requested song for 2008 on KOMP 92.3fm
*Opened for Angels and Airwaves 2008
*Opened for Hawthorne Heights 2008
*Area 107.9fm named Tda... as band to watch 2008
*Named as part of "The Absolute 100" bands to watch in '08 by ABSOLUTEPUNK.net!!! 8/07
*Worked with Planetary Group for radio promotions and being played on 160+ college radio stations across the country!!!
*Accepted to First Act Guitars Emerging Artist Program
*Opened for Joan Jett @ Hard Rock Hotel 2007
*Played New Music West Festival in Vancouver, BC(2007)
*Played to Hyperactive Music Festival (2007)
*Accepted to the 8th Annual Heart of Texas Quadruple Bypass Music Festival (2007)
*First unsigned band from Las Vegas to play South by Southwest (SXSW) 2005 (TX)
*December 06 Opened for Soul Asylum @ House of Blues - Las Vegas
*Played ROCKRGRL Conference 2005 (WA)
*Played Hyperactive Music Festival 2006 (NM)
*Played Quarters for Kids Benefit @ Cox Pavilion
*Played at 94.1 8th Annual Bite of Las Vegas w/ Switchfoot, Bowling for Soup, Five for Fighting and Blue Man Group
*Rebelpalooza @ UNLV w/ Face to Face, Atreyu, Guttermouth, Tsunami Bomb, Damone and other national acts
*Accepted to Connexion International Music Festival
*Music used at MTV's on the Strip 2005 @ Hard Rock Hotel
*Played Las Vegas Tattoo Convention 2004
*Winner of the Cheyenne Saloon Battle of the Bands
*Band of the Month on Groove Rock Gear Clothing
*Sponsorships and Endorsements from: Gibraltar Hardware, First Act Guitars, Dickies Clothing, Outlaw Eyewear, Penguin Magic, Ironhorse Tattoo, Knucklehead Strings, In-Tune Guitar Picks, Tank Farm Clothing.