"Fast Times" LP (Yippee Ki Yay Records, 2019)
"Fast Times" is the vinyl debut and second-full length from the three-piece surf-punk band out of San Antonio, Texas who have built an ever-increasing following with their notably energetic live act fusing uptempo garage rock and bedroom pop sounds lush with bright and drippy telecaster licks, melodies, and attitude. Notably, their show ever came together from a benefit they organized for the family of a classmate from high school whose daughter had very sadly passed away. That evening in fall of 2013 set a tone for what Junkie is about— bringing together friends, letting go of worries, spreading warm vibes, and having fun. It’s a simple recipe that has led them to prominent spots alongside Wavves, Beach Fossils, Hinds, No Parents, Beach Goons, and more! Album out 2/8/19 on Yippee Ki Yay Records. (read more)
Mark (guitar/vocals) and James (drums) first met each other while playing in a local hardcore punk band called Contentment and attending South San Antonio high school. As Mark began to discover the west coast surf-rock stylings of Best Coast, Surf Curse, Wavves, and the Growlers, his musical interests began to shift rapidly-- seeping into his songwriting, in particular.
Mark approached James with the name, concept, and idea for the band in summer of 2013 in addition to a draft of a song called “The Boyz”—an homage to love, camaraderie, and fun spirit of their closest group of ten high school friends. Sadly enough, one of these friends, Sierra, passed away in October of that year shocking the school, community, and the band.
Though rattled, Junkie hunkered down and became just tight enough to play their first live set at a benefit show they organized to help her family with memorial costs. Said James in an interview with the San Antonio Current, “She was the ‘Z’ in “The Boyz. She was the whole reason we got off our ass to do shows. We pulled together as friends and as a band, and I honestly still feel she’s the driving force.”
And drive they did.
Junkie followed up their first show with an opening spot for Warm Soda on March 10th, 2014 at San Antonio’s Ten Eleven, and exploded onto the live scene of San Antonio thereafter playing bars up and down the city’s famous St. Mary’s strip while occasionally getting thrown out afterward by bouncers surprised to learn they were still underaged high schoolers. Not letting that get them down, Junkie gravitated toward house parties, gallery showings, downtown music festivals, independent book-stores, and everything in between while also kick starting their own mini-music festival in James’ backyard called Junk Fest garnering upwards of 400 attendees for a number of local and regional bands that grew out of their own wake.
A string of digital singles followed along with the Stupid Feels EP, xoxo Ep, and the Bong Dazed Ep culminating with the band’s first full length record W/E released in May of 2016—as did an 18-date west-coast tour featuring a sell-out of LA’s famous all-ages DIY space, the Smell.
That first experience on the road was eye-opening, life-changing, and majorly important on the young band greatly increasing their tightness, stage-awareness, and drive to continue growing. Said James of the tour in a radio interview with KTSW 88.9FM, “It was like traveling through a parallel universe, and somehow we ended up back at home”.
Over the course of that summer and into the fall, Junkie built upon those road lessons channeling their tour momentum into opening slots alongside prominent acts like the Beach Fossils, Dune Rats, Colleen Green, Bleached, Hinds, Shannon & the Clams, La Luz, Froth, and other prominent acts on the national touring circuit before temporarily relocating back in Los Angeles in July of 2017.
Crashing at a friend’s place, they played a number of shows up and down the coast with acts like No Parents, Beach Goons, and the Paranoyds while also playing sold out shows at the Observatory and Constellation Room. In between shows, the songs for their newest album began to take shape which they later returned to San Antonio to record in their home studio leading to their newest LP— Fast Times.