The Upwelling
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The Upwelling

New York City, New York, United States

New York City, New York, United States
Band Rock Alternative

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Music

The best kept secret in music

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Ari and Joshua Ingber don't really expect you to know their band. They're just a couple of brothers out of Queens who have been on one crazy adventure ever since their unassuming, well-received, and well-traveled five-track EP caught the attention of some very well-connected music lovers, and they've been caught in the middle of this wave ever since.

But they're not complaining.

Their debut LP, An American Stranger (Edmond/Doghouse Records), was released last August around the same time The Upwelling was announced as one of Spin's “Hot New Bands”. Striking while the iron was hot, the duo, along with new addition Mike Mulieri on bass, hit the road, where they've been ever since. But today, instead of opening for the usual stadium-crowd capacity for the All American Rejects, Third Eye Blind, and Blink 182, they're hitting smaller venues in hopes to connect with fans in a more intimate setting, playing at Reggie's Rock Club on Tuesday, Jan. 19.

The Upwelling formed about a decade ago, playing their brand of good ol' American rock n' roll since a very American tragedy took place on Sept. 11 2001. Ari (vox), who felt compelled to pen most of the songs that appear on the band's 2004 self-titled EP, including the beautifully haunting 9/11 tribute called “Ladder 116”, got his brother Joshua (drums) on board with a quick phone call to Washington, DC, and they officially formed soon after. “Ladder 116” is a contradicting track about a breath-taking blue-skied day that turned into one of the ugliest days in American history. The song got critical recognition and eyes were opened to this brand new band that today, has grown into a legitimate rock band, now signed with Edmond Records, which is owned by All American Reject's vocalist, Tyson Ritter – a huge Upwelling fan – and Ritter’s very first client.


“Two definitive events convinced me to start this thing,” Ari Ingber explains. “One was 9/11 which was a very powerful experience for me and for the first time made me truly aware of my mortality. I was blocks away and watched it from a window. The other was a conversation I had with the musician Lyle Lovett whom I am a very big fan of. I met him after waiting after a show and we just had this amazing conversation where he essentially convinced me to grab my balls and give it a shot. Essentially those two experiences flipped the switch in me to start writing seriously.”

Ari wrote the EP and recorded the record with his brother in his makeshift recording studio in the basement of his apartment. Like every band trying to spread their music, he and Joshua made copies and distributed them at rock shows and bars. Songs like “Murdered By A Big Bomb”, “American Night", and the eerily sad “Sam”, caught fire, causing word to spread, and finding themselves in good company.

We met Stephan Jenkins (Third Eye Blind) and Tyson in completely organic ways but in entirely different circumstances, “says Joshua. “We met Stephan first. Apparently, we handed a CD to Stephan's ex-girlfriend. She liked it enough to set aside whatever bullshit existed between them and sent it to him. I was in line for a CMJ show in New York City, when my phone rang. The voice on the other line said, ‘Hi this is Stephan Jenkins from Third Eye Blind. Is this someone in the Upwelling?’ Before looking at the number on my phone and thinking it was my cousin, a big Third Eye Blind fan, I replied ‘Dude, shut the fuck up.’ Then, I hung up. Then I called him back three hours later.”

Meeting Tyson Ritter is another six degrees story after a CD of the magic EP made its ways into the hands of a sound engineer at New York City's Mercury Lounge. She then gave the CD to her friend whose own band’s tour manager went on to be the tour manager - named Shaba - for the All American Rejects, who also got a hold of the EP. Months passed until a surprising call came through - on the other end, Shaba. The Reject’s opener had canceled last minute and the job was theirs if th - URChicago


September 12, 2001 was a time of confusion, anger, and grieving for many people across the world. But for brothers Ari and Josh Ingber, it was also the day they decided to form a band.

Struck by the previous day's events, Ari sat down and wrote nearly all of the songs that appeared on the band's 2004 self-titled EP, including "Ladder 116" (then called "Ladder 104"), which will appear again -- in a slightly different version -- on the band's first full-length album, An American Stranger, due August 25. Download the track below!

When Ari called Josh, a drummer, to play him the song and ask him to help form a band, Josh didn't hesitate, even though the two had never really played music together growing up. "I thought 'Ladder 116' was the best song I'd ever heard in my life at that time," Josh told SPIN.com.

The haunting track -- which explores the painful contradiction of the 9/11 terrorist attacks happening on one of the most beautiful days of that year -- also caught the ear of Third Eye Blind frontman Stephen Jenkins, who invited the band to open for 3EB on their 10-year anniversary tour after having their EP passed along to him by an ex-girlfriend.

Another fan came in the form of All-American Rejects singer/bassist Tyson Ritter, who also took the Upwelling out on tour, and eventually made them the first signing to his own label, Edmond Records. "As I heard this band playing for the first time, I thought, 'Holy shit!'" Ritter says in a video on the band's YouTube page.

Since then, it's been a crazy ride for the Queens, New York-based brothers, who earned "Underground Band of the Year" honors in our 2005 Band of the Year contest. They've played with Metric, Ben Kweller, and We Are Scientists, and spent a year and a half recording An American Stranger with help from producers Jenkins, Ritter, and Jason Hill (Louis XIV).

"We just disappeared off the face of the earth while we were recording this album," Ari said. "Now that it's done, we're looking forward to reaching out to our fans again -- you know, where every once in awhile, someone comes up to you and says, 'Hey, I really like your record,' or 'Hey, I just heard your new song,' and that's awesome." - SPIN


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

September 12th, 2001 -- After witnessing the prior day’s attacks, from his apartment in New York City, Ari Ingber dealt with the tragedy by picking up his guitar and 4-track recorder. A talented songwriter, Ari had originally decided not to pursue a career in music. But in the wake of 9/11, Ari’s relationship with music became all-consuming.

Later that night, Ari called his brother, Joshua. He propped the phone up on his shoulder and grabbed his acoustic guitar. “I want to play you two songs, and I want to ask you a question.” Ari played Ladder 116 and An American Stranger. “Would you move to New York and start a band with me?”

Reclining on a couch, with his left leg in a cast, Joshua said “yes”. However, it would take until 2006 before Joshua was fully recovered from breaking his knee and could comfortably sit at a drum set. The two found a “fixer-upper” apartment in Brooklyn, with enough space to make a small studio for Ari to record. Finally, drawing influence from the Cure, Pink Floyd, and the Pixies, the Upwelling was born in the form of a 5-song concept album. All the songs were written and recorded by Ari, and all were songs he had written on the 12th of September 2001.

The E.P. featured songs that seamlessly merged without end, and no song resembled anything on the radio. Before labels took notice, it started attracting the attention of fans, media, and other bands. By the end of 2006, the Upwelling was designated as the 1st unsigned act and 1st EP on
Virgin-Megastore’s Virgin Recommends series, Spin.com’s Underground Band-of-the-Year, Hoobastank’s local opener winners, Karma Productions’ band to tour Ireland, and a SXSW Hits Daily Rave Review Band.

Without agency, the band had already supported Metric, the Wrens, and Ben Kweller, when they were invited to tour the U.K., Europe, and U.S. with the All-American Rejects. Later in 2008, the band was invited, as the sole support, on Third Eye Blind’s 10-year anniversary tour. Both the Rejects and Third Eye Blind accidentally found the Upwelling, having randomly been handed copies of the E.P. from a live sound-engineer and an ex-girlfriend, respectively.

Recently, the band was the first act signed to Tyson Ritter of All-American Rejects’ label, Edmond Records. Their first record, An American Stranger, was released in the fall of 2009. The album deals with Ari’s life from that fateful night of songwriting, through his experiences building a band and getting on the road. Although, Ari describes it as a “search for beauty amidst general American relativism.”

Jason Hill, of Louis XIV, co-produced the bulk of the record with Ari. Tyson Ritter made his producer debut on the record, producing 2 songs. In addition, Stephan Jenkins (Third Eye Blind) invited the band to San Francisco to record 2 songs. During which time, Ari co-wrote the song, About to Break, which was featured on Third Eye Blind’s newest release, Ursa Major, their first record in 6 years. Ari’s songwriting sparked another opportunity; in 2011, he has co-written 2 songs on Vanessa Carlton’s newest release, Rabbits on the Run.

It was in a Long Island studio with Tyson, that the brothers’ Ingber met the bass playing mixing-engineer, Michael “Showtime” Mulieri. After hearing the unmixed record, Michael left his engineering position, and joined the band. Together, the band has toured both the U.S. and Europe twice, including the 2010 summer warped tour. Currently, the band is working on their follow-up record and continues to tour.