Band Spotlight: Wires and Lights

If you missed the West Michigan Noise! Convention at MXTP in Grand Rapids this summer, or the Dog Days of Summer festival at Old Dog Tavern in Kalamazoo last August, then you also missed out on seeing West Michigan's newest rising star, Wires and Lights.

While most of the members of the band played previously in a half-summer-long project called Sarah Never Loved Me, the dissolving of that band led to the joining of singer/songwriters Kathryn Tapper and Brendan May.

"Some of the members of [Sarah Never Loved Me] were being a little unreliable," said Tapper, frontwoman and rhythm guitarist. "At that point, I just decided to take Brendan and Jayson [Bussa] and start our own thing. Then another old friend, Paul Bauer, came along and we were set."

The band's name is a reference to two separate entities. The first was a speech by Edward Murrow. Secondly, the group's practice space is in a dance studio in Kalamazoo, and Tapper referenced a box with the words "wires and lights" — filled with stage lighting equipment - and they felt the name was simply calling to them.

As far as musical direction, Tapper says even the members have a difficult time defining their sound.

"I don't think we've been compared to anyone that's actually comparable," Tapper said. "Someone said I sound like Jewel. I don't sound like Jewel. I know that. There's no clear-cut answer. We all come from different musical backgrounds. I think that's exciting because we're not pop, and we're not rock. For me personally, I'm a straight pop music junkie. I love Justin Bieber ... Brendan is more into acoustic classical stuff and Jayson is more heavy metal. Paul is into everything."

The band released its debut EP on Sept. 30 at Old Dog Tavern in Kalamazoo, and has a performance scheduled in Grand Rapids on Nov. 12 during the Autumn Goes Acoustic event at The Intersection. It will be appearing alongside Domestic Problems, Kari Lynch, Christopher Andrus, Chasing the Sky, Alexis Kent and more.