The promising New Jersey indie rock band Tokyo Rose performed a solid set at The Alley in Fullerton on March 29.
The audience was dismal in numbers and what was even more embarrassing for this (yet, another) Jimmy Eat World-influenced band was when lead vocalist Ryan Dominguez’s guitar pick, a typically coveted treasure for concert goers, fell onto the feet of the crowd. It was picked up by a young girl who attempted to return the pick.
To be fair, Tokyo Rose is an upand- coming rock band, which means that knowledge of their existence didn’t quite strike the bell of cognizance for their preteen spectators at The Alley.
Yet within due time, Tokyo Rose will be seeing better times along with bigger crowds in the upcoming year.
Since releasing their album, ‘New American Saint,’ with Side Cho Records in October, Tokyo Rose has been catching the attention of fans across the globe.
Having recently finished touring in Japan with The Rocket Summer and another obscure Japanese band, Tokyo Rose admitted to enjoying a stage with such a diverse group.
‘We’re a lot different from them and it was strange because the crowds were coming for The Rocket Summer but we won [the fans] over and gained some new friends,’ explained bassist and vocalist Chris Poulsen.
As a veteran of encountering Japanese culture, Poulsen admits that he still isn’t able to stomach the Japanese delicacy of sushi and is amazed at how different the reserved Japanese are from Americans who are used to being ‘loud and obnoxious.’
Regardless of their band name, label origins and sticky Japanese photo booth press photos, Tokyo Rose hasn’t been swayed by Asian cultures.
In the ‘oversaturated’ music scene of New Jersey, Rutgers alumnus Dominguez and Monmouth graduate Poulsen gathered the rest of the members of the Tokyo Rose quartet.
Soon afterward, the coagulation of ‘New American Saint’ granted Tokyo Rose recognition among bands such as Taking Back Sunday, whom they will be joining on tour this coming Friday.
Fortunately, Tokyo Rose hasn’t come across any bumps in their rise to musical fame, such as lawsuits concerning their name; there is an older UK band that shares the same moniker.
Tokyo Rose couldn’t be bothered with such trivial situations as they are prepping for their shows at Warped Tour, Cornerstone and Flipside Festival with lineups including Mae, Motion City Soundtrack and many others later this year.
The question arises as to whether ‘New American Saint’ is analogous to some sort of political agenda.
The album is filled mostly with songs pertaining to the ups and downs of relationships, yet was inspired by the work of the famous beatnik Jack Kerouac.
In Kerouac’s novel, ‘On the Road,’ which Dominguez is a big fan of, protagonist Sal Paradise soaks in life through his travels and lives to the fullest due to inspiration by the enigmatic character of Dean Moriarty.
The members of Tokyo Rose were musically illuminated from a young age by their families and it is this ideal of ‘soaking in life’ that brought to fruition the ‘New American Saint.’
Poulsen’s expectations are high for the next couple of tours and most likely those aspirations to ‘live like a rockstar’ and to succeed for Tokyo Rose will be fulfilled since ‘New American Saint’ is an album worthy of blasting in your car stereos.