New Jersey superstars Wetbrain strutted onto the scene with their debut “A Certain Light” earlier this year. The former rhythm section of beloved garden state group Dentist, Rudy Meier and Nick Kaelblein, have created a sound that mixes vocal harmonies and kinetic guitar work reminiscent of Modest Mouse or Sunny Day Real Estate.
Their video for “Sewage,” celebrates sunlight and getting high by following Meier and Kaelblein mundane morning on a quest to score weed.
Rudy Meier talked with BTR Today about making “Sewage.”
BTR Today (BTR): How has the lineup changed since the beginning? Are you all in Asbury Park?
Rudy Meier (RM): Initially it was just me, then Nick and me, and then once the record was finished we needed a rhythm section, so we asked Grebel and Jay to fill the spots and they agreed to it. Most relieving day of my life.
Live, it’s me on rhythm guitar and lead vocals, Nick on lead guitar, Ryan Grebel on bass and vocal harmonies, and Jay LaRaia on drums.
And no, we’re actually based more in Pt. Pleasant now, though I lived in Asbury for about a year.
BTR: What inspired you to write this record together?
RM: It started as a recording project of mine. I had just graduated from the vocational audio program in Lakehurst, NJ and wanted to try my producer/engineer hat on for size. I had a ton of songs that wouldn’t have worked for the band I was in at the time, and we had a studio space with just enough equipment to successfully record a drum kit, so it was off to the races, as they say.
The album has a sort of loose narrative dealing with things that are toxic – a person, substance, your news feed, whatever – once you get in too deep with any of those things, you have to dig yourself out of a hole. So, in short, it’s “The Slacker’s Guide to Digging Yourself Out of Toxic Holes And Laughing About It Later”.
BTR: Who wrote the arrangements and lyrics?
RM: I wrote and performed the skeletons of the songs – guitar, drums, lyrics, vocals. Nick played lead guitar and bass. Additional guitars and instruments/production stuff was done by myself and some other friends who lended their talents.
BTR: Who designed the album artwork?
RM: The artwork itself is a watercolor painting done by our friend Dan Ridenour from a band called Chemtrail. The design was done by our friend Mike Loupos. Good lads.
BTR: What was it like shooting the video for Sewage?
RM: Nick and I came up with the basic plot and dialogue one night while we were hopped up on coffee, bounced it off of Anthony Yebra (who directed and edited it) and on the day of filming we just put on our work boots and got it done.
We wanted it to be in the vein of ‘90s Kevin Smith with the look of an old Beck video while accurately portraying something of a day in our lives.