Open Air Stereo Want More Fun in the Sun

Open Air Stereo encapsulates Southern California pop and rock sound. Their debut album, entitled “Primates,” features ten tracks that give off that beachy, summery spirit that is enjoyable, refreshing and triggers the senses to aurally experience the laid-back, chill vibes of surf, sand and sun.

Chase Johnson (lead singer), Nick Gross (drummer), Evan Smith (bassist) and Scott Pounds (guitarist) form the four man band that aspires to win the world over with their music. Their musical inspirations range from the Foo Fighters to The Beatles to the Red Hot Chili Peppers and have helped shaped the band to create a unique sound all their own. Open Air Stereo has already made a name for themselves in the music industry. Fans of the past hit reality MTV show, “Laguna Beach” will recognize their music from the show.

Lead singer Chase Johnson and drummer Nick Gross were the two original founding members, adding bassist Smith to form a trio of talented musicians.

On the hunt for a guitarist, the band found Scott Pounds off Craigslist, a site that Johnson describes as a place “where people go to meet hookers.” The diamond in the rough Pounds floored the band upon audition.

“We cancelled all the rest of the auditions that day when we saw Scott,” Johnson said. And thus, Open Air Stereo was formed.

Johnson speaks highly of his bandmates, giving the impression that OAS is a blend of each individual member’s style and equally contribute to give their listeners nothing but top quality music. This is evident in each song off their album. From the underlying skillful bass lines, the dynamic drum beats, the prodigious guitar riffs, and the unmitigated soul in the vocals, each component proves essential to the band’s success. The compatibility within OAS is undeniable.

The group have been a unit for eleven years, but it wasn’t without setbacks and frustration. After being on “Laguna Beach” they disbanded and took a three year hiatus.

“It started with being too young to have so much success with being on the show. We each had our own issues and we all needed to grow individually before we grow together,” Johnson says.

However, OAS proved to be more than just another failed band forgotten. They regrouped with the mindset that there was still some unfinished business to attend to. The three year split became a refining process to get each individual ready for more exciting future endeavors together.

“After we had grown enough, matured enough, we realized it was time to do what we had originally set out to do – take over the world with music and we will continue to do that and beat it to a pulp.” Johnson says.

Now at the 11 year mark of their musical relationship, OAS continues their musical journey and have given birth to a lovechild that they are proud to show off to the world. They released their first debut album “Primates” in May under the Goomba Music record label. Upon first listen, OAS had this listener sold. As aforementioned, OAS’s songs resonate Southern California’s signature lifestyle. The different song style in the album does not vary much from the free spirited, good vibes sound, but they do ambitiously venture into a harder rock sound with tracks such as “Living Proof” and “Hung Over You”.

Their single, “Stuck On You,” is expected to air on live radio within the next few weeks.

Johnson can only describe the feeling of hearing “Stuck on You” on the radio as “epic,” imagining and likening the feeling to the big stomach wrenching drop in an amusement park ride, “drinking bottles of champagne and jumping out of an airplane all at the same time. I’ll probably be running around the room going crazy,” he says with a laugh, excitement resonating from his voice.

The airy, light, “Stuck on You” was written during a late night session at the studio of Strz Enterprises, a record label started by drummer, Gross.

“Nick and I were sitting there and he came up with a dope beat and it just sparked. We both started humming,” said Johnson, “It’s about friends being stuck on each other, really mainly about friendship and that bond.”

For OAS, the making of the album was all determination and dedication sans monkeying around. So why name their first debut album “Primates”?

“The first reason is the single ‘Stuck on You’ where we have our monkey voices, the ‘giggles’ we like to call them, but more importantly it’s a story of evolution – being together for eleven years knowing each other for so long, going through so many peaks and valleys, just really going through so many life experiences, whether they be positive or negative, we came through on top,” says Johnson.

Evolved they have, and they continue to trek that uphill road, taking in the opportunities to progress, learn, and move forward. When asked if he felt that the band has reached full potential, Johnson says no.

He explains, “We definitely have not reached full potential. We are always out to be better, to get better. That’s why we’re on tour. I feel like we get stronger as a band every night. We always wanna be better.”

That driving mentality pushes Johnson to foresee a promising future for OAS. There is nothing but onward to bigger and better things. From the heart of Laguna Beach, through radio waves and speakers nationwide, and even to worldwide stages, OAS can only go as far as they dream. Of course, if every album is as solid as “Primates,” Johnson is confident in their future success.

Without hesitation and without a single doubt in his voice, Johnson says, “I do see another eleven years times more.”

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