Emerging from Asbury Park's indie rock scene, The Tide Bends fuse 90s British rock nostalgia, contemporary shoegaze, and psychedelic influences, featuring Dan Nolan on drums, Rudy Mier on guitar, keys, and vocals, David Hough on guitar and vocals, and MJ Hancock on bass and vocals. Known for their captivating melodies and dynamic performances, they gained acclaim with their debut EP "Greened" in 2016, followed by singles like "Thrust" (2017) and "Keeper" (2019). Their upcoming EP "Say Yeah," set to debut in spring [Year], promises infectious rhythms, lush guitar textures, and mesmerizing vocals, inviting music enthusiasts to join their journey as they redefine indie rock with unwavering artistic integrity.

How did the band form and what does the band name mean?

I met Dan through a mutual surfing friend who played cupid. He had endless amounts of energy for an adult and was open to jam and see what happened.  We had similar music taste but he also had insanely good pulls for these obscure bands and albums from the 80s and 90s, stuff I’d never would have heard of.  Dan can hear the minutia in a song that you know by heart… and I’d go back over songs I’d forgotten about to see what he was talking about.  Guy’s got great ears.

 The thing about band names is that everyone has the best name… until you have to come up with one.  “Tide Bends” seemed like it had multiple meanings depending on how you looked at it.  There’s also the obvious nod to one of our favorite Radiohead albums.  I tell anyone thinking about what to name their project that you should be able to say the name in a loud, crowded bar and the other person should be able to hear it, clearly.  That’s one of the many times I should’ve taken my own advice. (haha)

 We’d get time at Red Bank Rehearsal, bring a bunch of wine and beer and start messing with whatever voice memo I had been bugging him with all week.  It didn’t take long to get locked to these corny progressions and melodies, but hey – it felt good to make music.  The song, “where are my friends” came out of riff right before getting together one night. I wanted to have something to jam in case nothing panned out, but it came together in just a few minutes.  Soon after, we found a bass player and recorded an EP in our friend’s basement with Paul Ritchie (Parlor Mob, DrkHrt).  Our first shows were via our good friend Craig Cirinelli, a lifer in the northern NJ music scene, who booked us a couple gigs in around New Jersey without even hearing us.  We love Craig.  That’s where we started.

Previous musical projects? How'd you first get into music?

I got into music like anyone else… a fan first, making un-asked-for mixtapes for friends and girls, and obsessing over how it made me feel: serious and personal.  I played percussion in high school and got a cheap acoustic guitar for Christmas my freshman year of college at Northeastern University in Boston. I learned like two chords thanks to Guitar for Dummies and began writing little songs and progressions, mostly incoherent stuff thanks to the aftermath of healthy bar and club scene.  I didn’t really have any bands worth mentioning other than a writing project called Gutter Music Project. We never played shows but recorded a few songs up in Lowell, MA at our friends Lockout space which was my first experience recording and where I felt the hooks sink in.

I’m surrounded by a ton of creative energy thanks to the other guys who have way more band and project experience than I do. Dan, for instance, was involved in a few post-punk projects with our friend Craig (above), namely The World Concave and Elemae. Rudy, on the other hand, had his own band called Breathing Blue which performed at some huge shows and festivals. After that, he played drums in Dentist (Asbury Park) for a few years before leaving to start Wet Brain, where I first heard him sing and play guitar—turns out I underestimated his talents, thinking he only played drums. Rudy's involvement spans across numerous bands, but it's worth mentioning his newest project, Bristler, as well as his longstanding commitment to our friend band, Yawn Mower. I met MJ during his time with Sweet Joey’s Thing of Beauty, but his portfolio includes works with Viigo, Awesome New Republic, and currently, Sacred Lawns— one of my favorite bands in town right now.

First concert that you ever went to? 

My grandfather took me to see Poison and Tesla at the Garden State Arts Center when I was 7. Then my cousin took me to see them again a few months later at Brendan Byrne Arena and I still remember seeing Ricky Rockett rotating around in the air during a drum solo.  Pretty terrible and amazing at the same time haha.

 What's your writing process like?

Hmmm, I wouldn’t say there’s a science or anything behind it.  In the past, Tide Bends songs were mostly born out of a jam or a riff.  this album has five songs that I feel came together five different ways; some came from a riff, another came from a demo I had at home, another from just a rehearsal jam. It does feel a lot better to build off of an idea when theres a progression *and* a vocal melody.  Once those two elements exist, I can start abusing my voice memo app and building from there.

 What other artists or songs inspire your music? 

 Oh man.  The net is wide and the pool is deep.  There’s definitely a lot of brit-rock influence from both the older, known bands like Ride, Stone Roses, Oasis, Doves, The Jesus and Mary Chain as well as the newer class like Pastel, Wunderhorse, Gilla Band, Fontaines D.C. and Chappaqua Wrestling.  We’ll be at rehearsal and the other three will be going deep, down the wormhole about these early Cure albums, they’re huge fans and I’m still playing catch up. Some of the state-side bands I’d throw on the pile are The War on Drugs, Queens of the Stone Age and subsequently Them Crooked Vultures, Beck, Diiv and Grandaddy.  From a writing perspective, I’ve always felt easily moved by the likes of Elliot Smith, Jeff Buckley, Pete Yorn… like I said, wide net.  I’m all over the map and always trying to sniff out new stuff.

 What's the live experience like and your philosophy on playing live? Do you think the music live should be identical to the recorded version or should it be it's own thing?

For me, the live show is it’s own thing and doesn’t have to be/shouldn’t be a carbon copy of the recording. It’s easy to know where that comes from – thinking back on any good concert or show experience I can remember, I’d never recall “and it sounded EXACTLY like that album” as something endearing or memorable.  All my memories revolve around the energy level of the band and crowd, how good it was sonically, and maybe how they curated the setlist (which I guess is about trying to control the flow and energy youre putting out). 

 But to answer the question, my philosophy would revolve around connecting with the people who want it by putting all of yourself into it.  And there’s no one way to command it.  It’s case by case, night by night.  That’s the only way I can think of to describe any sort of ethos for our live performances.

 Has the band toured? What has the touring experience been?

 We had a quick tour in January of 2023 where we ran up from Philadelphia and through New England, back through Brooklyn, ending in Asbury Park.  It went really well and our show at Our Wicked Lady with the Rizzos was a nuts, definitely one of the best lineup, venue and crowd connection experiences I can remember.  Tough to beat the vibe in that room.  Definitely looking forward to doing some more touring with the new lineup and material. The new stuff feels so good I’m itching to bring it out there.

What's up next for the band?

This summer is going to rip. There’s going to be some really fun shows coming together all over the northeast.  And to be honest, I want to keep this momentum going and get this next batch of songs in front of the band.  I saw how the songs on this album were cooked and brought to life so I’m just psyched to keep going. 

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