Between keeping track of your classes, studying and trying to maintain a social life, there’s a lot that people are trying to keep on their plate. In terms of things that require a lot of time and practice and would interfere with those other things, being in a band would be a big one. It can’t be easy trying to do what most consider a full career while also trying to juggle multiple classes, extracurriculars and friends. It’s even more difficult because you need to put more effort into getting decent exposure early on.
One of the bands that give viewers some more insight into what to expect is the experimental indie rock band named Jailbait. Made of members Alyssa Taylor (rhythm guitarist/vocalist), Lilly Okker (bassist/vocalist), Michael Reed (lead guitarist), and newest member Anna O’Brien (drummer), the band addressed a common misconception about their group. Taylor explained that, “Since we are a pretty new band and three-fourths of the members are girls, there are a very small amount of people that don’t take us seriously as a band… We are hoping to broaden our shows to more areas around New England and set up recording time in a studio in Boston to possibly record an album instead of recording it in Lilly’s room.”
The classic alt-rock band Afterimage also discussed a misconception they face. The band is made up of members Griffin Romprey (lead vocals), Brandon Curcio (guitar), Casey Daron (bass), Jason Coburn (keyboards), and Andy LeCuyer (drums). Daron said, “People sometimes think that we aren’t as serious as professional bands, and that we are just playing for fun. In actuality, we play shows outside of Keene weekly, and have released two EPs over the past two years. While we do have a lot of fun with the band—especially at our basement shows—we are extremely hardworking and dedicated to our craft.”
Instrumental psych-rock band Omoo Omoo commented as well. Danny Kamps (guitar/keyboards), Jeff Kolter (bass), and Dave Painchaud (drums/guitar) make up the group. Kamps said, “I think some people expect us to be a relatively quiet band, since so many places to play around here are places like bars and restaurants. We don’t pride ourselves on being particularly loud, but I do think we take some people by surprise by our presence.”
Being a part of a band, you have to utilize your resources for more exposure. One of the ways a band can do this is use some of the campus resources. Daron of Afterimage explained that, “We have been featured on WKNH many times over the years. We have also played many on-campus events, including Rocktoberfest and the KSC Carnival.” Others took a different approach. Jailbait’s member Taylor said, “We have connected with other bands across campus to get a show going, and our friend Collin actually helped us set one up at his house with his band Dispøsed, without him we probably would’ve been too timid to really keep this going at Keene.” Omoo Omoo’s way of seeking on campus help differs from their peers, Kamps explained, “Our bass player Jeff went to Keene State for film and a few of his contacts in the local film scene have helped us with video projects, among other things.”
All three bands have a concert in the Maple Brown Room on Friday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. The event is sponsored by Alpha Sigma Phi, who will be accepting donations of non-perishable food items as suggested for entry. All of the items will be given to the Hungry Owl, the food pantry on campus. Headliners Afterimage expressed their excitement by saying, “We are extremely excited to perform on the Mabel Brown stage again! The event is supporting such an important cause, and we are very happy to be a part of it. Plus we’ll have our friends from Jailbait and Omoo Omoo opening up for us, so how could you not love that?” Jailbait also stated that this will be their first performance with O’Brien as their drummer, and they can’t wait to perform with Omoo Omoo and Afterimage again. Last but not least, Omoo Omoo mentioned that they are grateful for groups like Afterimage and Jailbait for supporting live music in the area because “places to play rock have really dried up.”
Joseph Guzman can be contacted at