In the early ’90s, SoCal nü-metal outfit Incubus were the new jacks on the scene. Dirk Lance was there at the beginning, playing bass on the band’s first four albums, Fungus Amongus, S.C.I.E.N.C.E., Make Yourself and the highly acclaimed Morning View. Since leaving the band in 2003, Lance—known to his parents and besties as Alex Katunich—pursued a groovy-blues passion project known as Willie’s Nerve Clinic. This time, Lance has teamed up with longtime friend/guitarist Kyle Mortensen and vocalist/keyboardist Emily Rath to create East Of June. Today, AltPress is premiering the new video for the first fruit of their labor, the recently released “Rebel.”
Fortified by some percolating synth programming, Rath’s passionate vocal prowess and a lead break that wasn’t used on Starship’s “We Built This City,” “Rebel” time-stretches the calendar to drag sonic signifiers of previous eras to create something uniquely contemporary. Melodic but not pop, rocking but not overdone by snoozy, shredding histrionics, East Of June are going forward any damn way they want to.
East Of June’s debut video, directed by Mortensen and Odin Wadleigh, is an excursion into jump-cuts and quick edits featuring Rath in various guises, ranging from soulful, sultry and scary. In contrast, Lance and Mortensen look like they’re auditioning for the roles of the deranged gang in the next Rob Zombie movie. There’s enough going on here for multiple viewings, for sure.
“People have asked me, ‘Why now? Why this band? Why this song?’ And my response is always the same,” Lance says. “‘I don’t have to answer that. You’re not my supervisor!’ Suffice to say, many people have stopped asking me questions.”
While Lance waits for Zombie’s casting people to call, check out “Rebel” below and see where its charms take you. 3D glasses not included.