Near by Music

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the solar saturday



Near by Music
PO Box 441448
Somerville, MA 02144
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The Solar Saturday   "City on the Ocean" (mp3)

The Solar Saturday is a spacerock bossanova post-glam modernist soul outfit from Somerville, MA. What the hell does that mean? They play open music that incorporates whatever cool stuff they stumble across. The Solar Saturday

They formed in 1998 when Jeff Wright and Donna Coppola came out of musical seclusion and joined Chris Colthart in developing a hodgepodge of ideas that he had been kicking around for a while. Jeff had done some indie-rockin' and was getting more into computer music, but he's also a sucker for outlandish rock and roll concepts, so he went and bought a bass. Donna, a victim of childhood piano lessons, was focusing on performance and installation art, but after she went on tour as a roadie with a friend's band it was easy to convince her to give the rock and roll lifestyle a shot. She's into minimalism, which has tempered Colthart's leanings towards maximalism. Winston Yu later joined on Moog and violin, although he still has a side gig with the Boston Philharmonic, and Jon Langmead and his colleague Dr. Groove have started drumming too, so the stage gets pretty full.

What about the music? Well there are the oxymoronic contrasts -- blending the effeminate macho of the Small Faces and T.Rex, the insistent simplicity of Fela Kuti and old Stereolab, the spontaneity of Can and Memphis soul, and the poise of Fleetwood Mac and the Impressions. You may be thinking, "Yeah, right" but it's true.

Their first Near by Music release, a four song ep, featuring "City on the Ocean," came out in April 2000. It was recorded by Chris with some help from Keith Gendel and Tony Goddess of Papas Fritas. Each disc has an original painting by Donna as the cover, which is nice. Folks say...

  • "Like a piece of your favorite candy, this EP from the Solar Saturday leaves you wanting more." - Pop Culture Detox
  • "When I heard "Two Minds" start out with the 12-string guitar, I nearly died, it was so beautiful!" - Indiepages
  • "I love this stuff, send us more. Please." -

And when they can find the time, Donna and Chris tour accompanying Papas Fritas on keys and guitar respectively. Where do they find the time?