The two men that form Welcome Center, Jesse Smith and Aaron Sternick, met each other back in 2005 in college and their lives took different paths and they live 1,500 miles apart. Reconnecting online, the pair discovered they wanted to make music together again, that creative spark never fading away. Welcome Center’s music is a bright form of electropop/synthpop that sports hooks galore with bubbling synths recalling Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and the guitar rhythms and textures of New Order. The song sounds like an instant hit as it builds to a glorious crescendo and soars all the way through. Not bad for the first shot from these talented musicians.
Welcome Center‘s future plans include touring the single and entering the studio in July to make a new six-song EP.
Smith tells PopMatters about the new single: “In my early 30s, this thought kept going through my head whenever I was in the midst of experiencing anything, even if it was a new experience: ‘Is this all there is?’ Travel, time, love, religion, pain, and materialism, I couldn’t get the phrase out of my head, so I started working on a new demo for Welcome Center, which had been a lo-fi pop project up until this point.
“When I sent the demo over to Aaron, he had this idea to craft it as a pop song with the structure of a dance song, in which the intensity of the music matched the existential dread of the lyrics: Deep basses, live drums, overdubbed analog synths, noisy guitars. We started to sound like a real band for the first time. When we saw how people reacted to the song on tour, we knew we were doing something special. In a lot of ways, this song was a defining moment for the sound of Welcome Center. We started telling people that we were writing music for the party in the afterlife after we wrote this song.”