Rock Band ‘waking wander’ Writes Music with No Lyrics

Kevin Vera

Guitarist Christian Francisco, his brother and drummer Ryan Francisco and bassist Joseph Aguda say they draw inspiration from bands like Radiohead and Death Cab for Cutie.

The Indie Rock genre was popularized as early as the 1980s with bands like R.E.M and The Smiths headlining the movement.

Today, the evolution of this genre has produced bands like Franz Ferdinand, Radiohead and Death Cab For Cutie. These bands have created an atmosphere in the music world that has inspired some fans to begin a musical legacy of their own the humble garage.

Local band ‘waking wander’ is part of this young generation of musicians who passionately devote their lives to their music. They display beautiful rhythm constructed through life experiences and uninhibited emotion.

“It really comes out of nothing, there are couple songs where we literally turn off the lights and we just starting jamming together and it would construct these pretty cool songs,” Bassist Joseph Aguda said.

The band is a trio of talented young individuals starting with CSU East Bay’s own Christian Francisco, a freshman majoring in business administration, his brother and drummer Ryan Francisco, a high school sophomore, as well as friend and bassist Joseph Aguda.

Ryan began playing drums at the age of six and has been in several bands with older brother Chris since then. Chris began playing guitar in the third grade and went on to learn how to play bass and drums later on.

Joseph on the other hand was new to playing bass, but decided to give it a try when Chris needed a bassist for a band in 2006. After years of playing with different bands they decided to work as a trio and began composing music without a vocalist.

“We realized that if you were to put lyrics into our songs you can’t describe some of the things that we’re going for,  which is this lucid dream,” Ryan said.

The band practices in a dark room using blue lights and a smoke machine, creating the perfect environment for a dream-like jam session.

“The setting really makes the whole experience come together,” Chris said.

In just one year, the band has made substantial progress, from getting gigs on several occasions to winning ‘The Battle Of The Bands Competition’ in San Francisco, beating out 27 bands in the process.

A big part of their success is their style of play since it displays an actively resonating flow while simultaneously taking a dive into a melancholy realm.

“We were called by a company, Concerts First, and what they have you do is sell a certain amount of tickets, that way you get a spot,” Ryan said.

“This year we talked to the lighting people and the sound engineer because we knew what we wanted and we wanted to make sure we put on a good show. We were the only people to have the houselights off, the blue lights on and re-equalization for no vocals.”

Upon winning The Battle Of The Bands Competition in San Francisco, the band was awarded several studio hours which they used to record their first single titled “Shell Shock/Rushes Through My Veins,” which they recently made available on iTunes.

“Shell Shock/Rushes Through My Veins, has a military feel to it,” Ryan said. “After you go through battle many have experienced explosions and loud noises and since the song is energetic and has lots of explosive parts in it we try to make the title [evoke] imagery.”

Much of their future is dependent on the band members’ individual efforts to finance themselves. They currently have ideas they want to get out to the public but most of the expenses are coming out of their own pocket.

“The only money that we’re actually making is tips and donations,” said Ryan. “We’re trying to get some T-shirts out there, but a lot of the money is coming out of our own pockets while we’re still building our own fan base.”

Money, however, seems to be the last of their worries. Driven by passion, waking wander looks to continue playing their music to the public. They look to garner a bigger fan base and ultimately achieve the goal of creating an album.

“We’re basically trying to bring something to the music world which people haven’t heard before,” Chris said.

“As far as what we do we’ll never stop doing it,” Aguda said. “Even if we don’t get as many fans it’s not really about that we’re really just trying to present our music to the public and the general goal is to get our music out there.”