Spotlight on Act Rights
Genre: Psychedelic Garage
Hometown: Austin, TX
Artistic Approach: Building riff-based tunes & treating lyrics like instruments.
Straight out of the heart of Texas, Act Rights have been pumping out tunes that are a bit different from your typical rock band. This four-piece group has a killer sound that is unlike anything else you’ve likely heard. “Our sound is influenced by the music we listen to; a lot of my riffs come from bands like Queens of the Stone Age,” Charlie Cruz, the bassist, explains. Ajit Tim D’ Brass, guitarist and vocalist, elaborates further: “I grew up with a lot of blues and jazz, like a lot of Chicago blues. But it’s not necessarily important what you want to sound like; it’s what you don’t want to sound like.
After hearing some music around Austin, we learned what we didn’t want to play and we learned how to be different.”
The group formed about two years ago. The story goes that Ajit and Colton May [guitars/vocals] had been friends for a while and just decided to move to Austin. After a few house parties, they picked up a drummer and Cruz came by and asked to join the band. Since then, the drummer has changed, but the band has been writing and recording ever since. They’ve also been playing as many shows as possible and enjoy touring, but they all agree that it’s hard to tour when there are bills, a job and a family waiting for you at home.
The band’s writing process also deserves some attention. Cruz explains, “We tend to bring riffs together and build from there. Sometimes we’ll come with a fully completed song, then throw lyrics on at the end.”
May agrees: “Lyrics are treated like another instrument, like the icing on the cupcake.” Interestingly enough, and shocking when considering their sound, Ajit says, “Everything is well thought out. We don’t consider ourselves a really ‘jamming’ band. We plan everything.” When they were asked about their gear, they simply reply, “We like vintage gear,” and if they could open for any band, they agreed that they’d want to open for The Roots.
photo by Charlie Cruz