The music of The Radiographers is the auditory embodiment of summer lightning – invigorating and filled with its own unique sense of allure.
The band (comprised of Drew Walker, Kevin Lehr, Devin Ganey, and Mike Houser) formed at the University of Maryland, College Park, and has since released an LP entitled Talk with Transparency, completed two tours, and performed as headliners at notable venues such as DC’s The Black Cat. They have cemented their rightful status as exceptional creative talent by bringing musical work to fruition that is intelligently composed, dynamic, and brimming with sonic energy and soulful authenticity.
“Roll Along,” a track from Talk with Transparency, is exemplary of The Radiographers’ ability to cultivate music that is purely enjoyable while remaining smooth and well-calibrated. The track is as refreshing to the ear as a recent rainfall is to the Earth, complete with lyrical realism that speaks to the raw epicenter of human emotion. While the lyrics speak of the more heart-rending aspects of the human experience, they are simultaneously juxtaposed by music that is jovial and simply sounds lovely. The plucky guitar riff, energized rhythm, and brief albeit memorable whistle solo create an essence of pure musical bliss – contrasting with the lyrics in a manner that engages the mind in addition to the ear. Of an equal level of potency is “Missy May,” a track that kicks off with the emulation of pure rock ‘n’ roll electricity before then executing a seamless dynamic transition into the verses. The track also features the band’s innate vocal power; it contains harmonies that are as smooth as a hot knife slicing through a cool pad of butter.
The Radiographers are an undeniably polished musical entity that don’t hesitate to sonically explore the full breadth of rock ‘n’ roll.
AMPLIFY had the opportunity to chat with the band about their early days, their artistic evolution, as well as their upcoming EP, Please Give Me Spacetime. Read on, friends.
AMPLIFY: What’s the origin story of The Radiographers?
The Radiographers: Devin and Mike first met in a class their freshman year at the University of Maryland, College Park, and realized they lived in the same dorm. Following a few months of sharing ideas and co-creating a few songs, they found Kevin off of the recommendation of another local artist, Kai Orion, and immediately hit it off. After being a three piece for a year and half, the band met Drew, and he quickly became the fourth member when he came on stage to play a cover of The Smiths at a single release party hosted by Mike and Devin.
AMPLIFY: How would you describe your sound to someone who has never listened to The Radiographers before?
The Radiographers: Recently? Aqua-pop.
AMPLIFY: How would you articulate the band’s artistic growth?
The Radiographers: At the beginning, we were a guitar-based band, but recently we have begun experimenting with textures and tones created using synthesizers, voice modulation, and less conventional pedals. However, we have always maintained an emphasis on multi-part harmonies and memorable melodies.
AMPLIFY: How have the band’s creative objectives evolved from the last release, Talk with Transparency, to the upcoming EP?
The Radiographers: With this EP, we are trying to be more stylistically focused, in contrast with our previous album, which we felt was more eclectic.
AMPLIFY: Which aspect(s) of the upcoming EP are you most excited about?
The Radiographers: We’re very happy with the songwriting on the EP, and the production quality is a step up from Talk with Transparency.
AMPLIFY: What did your creative process entail when crafting the upcoming EP?
The Radiographers: Generally, Devin and Mike write songs individually on their acoustic guitars, often times put lyrics to it, and then take it to the band to transform and develop the song. Sometimes the song turns out how it was initially envisioned, but often times the input from the rest of the band will take the song in a new direction. We then use live shows to slowly craft it into a song we feel is ready to record; many of the songs on the EP were perfected while on our first tour in the Winter of 2016.
AMPLIFY: If you could change one aspect of the contemporary music industry, what would it be and why?
The Radiographers: It is the sole goal of many in the contemporary music industry to make money and market themselves as a brand, rather than to create music they feel passionate about. It would be great if the industry was less capitalistic, and more merit-based.
AMPLIFY: In your opinion, what’s the most unique aspect of College Park’s music scene?
The Radiographers: The scene has a diverse mixture of styles and bands, and it is centered around College Park’s radio station, WMUC. There are many great house and DIY venues around the area, and they are all always well-attended with regulars and fresh-faces alike.
AMPLIFY: As a band, which aspect of your work are you most proud of?
The Radiographers: Our songwriting, our hair, our arranging, and the textures we are able to create.
AMPLIFY: Lastly, what’s coming up next for The Radiographers?
The Radiographers: EP release and moving in together! I know what you’re thinking, were not married (yet!) but we really love each other 🙂
And, of course, check out their music video for “Inside Voices” below!