by Paul Bowers
After nearly 10 years as a band, the Charleston-based retro-pop outfit Explorers Club announced this week they will be parting ways.
"I think it just got to the point where only some guys in the band were really excited about it, but other guys were doing it just to do it," says frontman and songwriter Jason Brewer. "There's no bad blood. Nobody hates each other."
But before the band calls it quits, they'll head to North Carolina to record one last album on analog tape with producer Mitch Easter (R.E.M., Pavement, A Fragile Tomorrow). Brewer says the album, a mix of original material and cover songs, will likely be "some of our best-sounding stuff in terms of fidelity."
The Explorers Club made a splash in 2008 with their debut full-length album, Freedom Wind, which drew easy comparisons to the Beach Boys and featured a few singles that made it onto TV shows. The band's 2012 LP Grand Hotel was recorded with Beach Boys producer Mark Linett and reflected an affinity for '70s AM radio, with stylistic nods to Burt Bacharach and the Carpenters.
Brewer says he and bandmate Kyle Polk have another musical project in the works, and band members Mike Rogers, Dave Ellis, and Justin James are forming a three-piece delta blues band called Honey Smoke. "It's just been an honor for me to get the experience to play with all these great people," Brewer says. "I've met some of my musical heroes because of all the hard work that the band put in."