The Foster-Walker Complex
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The Foster-Walker Complex

Band Rock Pop


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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Things Are Looking Up for The Foster-Walker Complex"

by Andrea Bartz

The Foster-Walker Complex is on the move. After a recent flurry of recording and promoting, the two-year-old band is ready to release its self-titled, full-length debut album. After flyering the campus to promote their CD Release Show at 10 p.m. this Saturday at Martyr's Live ($10 gets you admission, a ride, and a CD at the door – e-mail, band members Marcus Ricci (vocals/guitar/keys), Danny Leavitt (guitar/vocals), Jon Echt (bass) and Dave Moyer (drums) found time to chat with the Chronicle.

Northwestern Chronicle: According to your website [], your last EP was made with a laptop and a mic. What was the recording process like for your first full-length album?

Marcus: When we were a new band, we needed to have a decent recordings to play in clubs, so initially it was just a tool to start playing some shows. We did six tracks, totally mixed and mastered by us. We were, like, playing and pressing record all at the same time. This summer we hooked up with a producer, Matt Allison – he's done a lot of Chicago stuff – and we did 11 tracks with him in about two and half weeks.

Danny: We just decided that to take the band to the next level we had to bite the bullet and spend a little of our own money – actually a lot of our own money – to do this thing professionally. [Allison] did all the technical stuff so we could fool around and do anything to make this album as professional as possible.

Jon: He also did the producing side, which helped shaped the sound. He's a master of tone and helped us find a sound that really works.

NC: What can fans expect from this album that's different from your past work?

Marcus: The EP was the first six songs we did as a band, and with this record we had a year and a half to develop our style and sound. We wrote songs that didn't make the album, and we thought a lot more about arrangements.

Danny: We've evolved in that the new stuff has a little more grit to it. It's a bit darker at least compared to our first EP, which was very out-at-the-beach pop rock. This one rocks harder, it's louder and more fun.

NC: What can people expect from the show on Saturday?

Marcus: I think people on this campus have probably seen us at one time or another, but we're always trying to tighten our live show and play better and have a fuller sound and a better on-stage dynamic. I think recording this album has helped that because we try to take into account the product that we got on the album and recreate it live.

Danny: Also, every live show we play we get a little better. The more experience we have the more we know how to work the crowd, we put a little more energy into it, and the better we get. Also, we're spending all this time doing everything possible to get this album out. We've been getting closer as friends, flyering and spending every possible minute together. I think that lends itself to the stage show because we interact more.

NC: Your EP was pretty well received in the Chicago area, right?

Jon: Well, no one hated it.

Dave: I wouldn't say it was widely heard though.

Jon: This [album], we've gotten out to a lot more important people, including record labels, guys on podcasts, we've gotten on the radio a few times...

Danny: I'm personally really excited because it seems that everyone we send it to is at least saying, "Great work," if not, "Great work, give me a call."

NC: What's the most flattering comparison you've ever gotten to another band?

Jon: Barenaked Ladies! No. We got that comparison and it really frustrated me.

Marcus: Elvis Costello, Weezer...we like when we get compared to really good bands because we want to write really catchy songs that remind people of these great tracks.

Jon: I think the most flattering compliment we've received was that we don't sound like anybody.

NC: What's your songwriting process?

Marcus: I'll sit around in my apartment and come up with chords and some words and some melodies, but then I'll bring it to the band. We talk a lot about instrumentation and arrangement and we'll change sections around. Once I bring in the songs, everybody has input at that point. I think that's one thing that's helping us get a unique sound: Dave and Jon and Danny come up with their parts better than I could do them.

Dave: Some songs really came out of the rough [on this album]. We got a great result out of songs that we had always liked but that all of a sudden, the way we orchestrated them, worked as a whole instead of just having a great chorus or something like that.

NC: What's going to happen when you all graduate?

Jon: I'll be going to go into the emergency telephone business.

NC: Like blue-light phones?

Jon: Yeah.

NC: Why don't those work? There aren't enough on campus to make any sense.

Jon: No idea.

Danny: He doesn't distribute them.

Jon: I just draw things.

Dave: We're going to keep playing - Northwestern Chronicle

"Quote by Lou Carlozo"

"The Foster-Walker Complex embodies the daring so many bands lack. They're mixing influences that even a mad scientist wouldn't mess with--everything from Barenaked Ladies to Elvis Costello--and have emerged from the lab with a true monster: fresh pop songs that move your hips and your heart at the same time."

- The Chicago Tribune

"Quote by DJ Richard Milne"

“What struck me [is] the songs – quite well written. I’m really impressed by these guys – good singing, good playing, good songwriting.” - WXRT: On air


The 1103 EP
The Foster-Walker Complex (full length CD)
(Untitled 3 Song Demo)


Feeling a bit camera shy


The Foster-Walker Complex is a Chicago based rock and roll band. Their music is both fresh and catchy, and each song clearly demonstrates the fact the boys know how to write a damn good pop song. They have just recorded their self-titled, full length debut with acclaimed Chicago producer Matt Allison (of Alkaline Trio and Uncle Tupelo fame), and with this new record in hand, they are eagerly poised to take the world by storm.

The band saw its inception in early 2004, when the band played its first gig at a fundraiser party in an apartment near Northwestern University. Things took off from there- in just a few short months, the band had already made its way to the stages of several prominent Chicago venues, and started performing with both local and nationally renowned acts, including Gavin DeGraw, Augustana, The Wailers, The Changes, The M's, Duenow, The Damnwells, Miggs, Toby Lightman, Bumpus, Mer, The Lawrence Arms, and Collossal.

In the spring of 2004, the band recorded, produced, and released their debut EP, “The Eleven-O-Three EP,” using only a laptop and a few microphones. Though the record was not widely distributed, it received glowing remarks from both the Illinois Entertainer and by Lou Carlozo of the Chicago Tribune, and the boys rapidly sold out of every copy they had pressed. With their new record hot off the presses, the boys continue to demonstrate an astute pop sensibility and lively on-stage persona, coupled with a commitment to quality song and lyrical construction. Simply put, the Foster-Walker Complex has a good time, but they take their fun seriously. They plan to do everything in their power to have their music heard by every set of ears they can persuade to listen.