Sometimes it takes a couple tries to get things right. For Los Angeles progressive rock band Sonomaris, their time apart gave them much needed space to plot a new assault, and shed the skin of their infancy to reemerge as a full-grown venomous attack. Pounding, savage, and unrelenting, the four-piece band draws upon the spirits of Tool, Deftones, Rush, and Karnivool, and creates a musical pastiche that blends a heavy defiance with moody alt-rock harmony.
Formed in the mid 2000s out of the ashes of local LA band Anandasong, Sonomaris took form when guitarist Tyrone Thompson and drummer Rick Trigueros decided to keep writing together as a duo. After meeting vocalist Jerry Gonzalez though a classified ad looking for musicians, the band recorded their self-titled debut EP in 2008, a four-song effort where Thompson handled both bass and guitar responsibilities. Then when bassist Rick Zaccaro came into the picture, things started gaining momentum: a bunch of shows, new material, and a positive response. “I’ve always been attracted to bands with strong musicianship and complex arrangements,” said Zaccaro, “which is why I was drawn to Sonomaris. The first time I heard them play I was blown away and knew I had to be involved.”
But then things suddenly got derailed. In late 2009, the band went on an indefinite hiatus after Thompson was forced to move to Northern California to care for his ailing grandmother. “We stayed in contact and on good terms during that time,” he explains, “but nothing was really certain.” Now, years later and under new circumstances, the quartet have been able to resurrect their 90s inspired guitar chords and Mike Patton-esque vocal melodies. Set to release their sophomore EP titled Initium, which appropriately means new beginning in Latin, the recording was tracked after only three pre-production rehearsals in less than a week. Recorded by the band themselves, and mixed and mastered by Jeff Mallow, the group already have plans for a third EP, which they expect to begin writing in the near future.
“I would hope that people can walk away with our songs stuck in their heads,” says Trigueros. “As a band we try to incorporate our individual musical backgrounds to blend them all into our songs. Gonzalez adds, “Sonomaris is a synergy. We are four minds working together to create art that is bigger than ourselves. My hope is that our listeners can appreciate that and find something in our music that they can relate to.”