Formed in Los Angeles in late 2016, The Marías are the psychedelic-soul lovechild of LA native, Josh Conway and Puerto Rican-bred, Atlanta-raised María. A smooth rendezvous of jazz percussion, hypnotic guitar riffs, smoke-velvet vocals and nostalgic horn solos, there’s something undeniably sensual in the group’s dreamlike fusion of jazz, psychedelia, funk and lounge.
With María on lead vocals and Josh on drums, the couple is joined by three of their closest friends and fellow musicians. On guitar, Jesse Perlman, born and bred of LA, with ‘tones that can melt steel,’ say his bandmates. On bass, Canadian born and Berklee trained Carter Lee. On keys, Edward James.
Drawing inspiration from both their vastly diverse backgrounds and the intimacy of their mystic Hollywood Hills commune, the band often writes, records and produces within the walls of their own home. Though Josh takes the lead as producer and architect to the The Marías’ overall sound – ‘The front man behind the scenes,’ María calls him – what listeners hear is the vision of the group. Their creations seamlessly dance between synthetic and analog tones, weaving in an old-school, vintage aesthetic with a progressive touch. Says Josh, ‘The production is as much about layering as it is about minimalism.’
First hitting the airwaves last year after an early Soundcloud demo was spun by Chris Douridas on KCRW’s Eclectic 24 and the Anne Lit Show, the group began their foray into the LA music scene with KCRW’s School Night. They have since built tremendous momentum, utilizing the freedom of independent operation to build an eclectic catalog, unrestricted by any one genre.
As they take to the stage, dressed like a dream from another era – María at the forefront, eyes closed, swaying rhythmically in a floor length smoking jacket and bright red lips – it’s clear why fans cheekily compare their sound to ‘having sex in the 70s’ or like ‘pouring cream into coffee.’ Watching them, you feel transported, taken over by a sultry tranquility as you drift into a timeless space.
They will be releasing their first EP, titled ‘Superclean Vol. I,’ in the fall of 2017, followed by ‘Superclean Vol. II’ in early 2018.
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