New End original

jonah matranga: vocals/guitar
norman arenas: guitar
scott winegard: bass guitar
charles walker: drums and percussion



Up until only one month before their first rehearsal, the members of this band all lived in different states. They booked their first show—as part of San Francisco’s prestigious Noise Pop Festival—before the four members of the band had even collectively met in the same room. And in four months time, the band went from telephone conversation theory to Washington, D.C.’s Salad Days Studio to ready their first-ever album. Such is the story behind New End Original and Thriller, the band’s exceptional debut full-length for Jade Tree.

Though experiencing viable success as a solo artist under his Onelinedrawing guise, Jonah Matranga—frontman for the deeply influential Sacramento-based hard rock band Far—formed New End Original in late 2000 with a host of friends that he met along the way. Norman Arenas—guitarist for post-hardcore pioneers Texas is the Reason—began trading tapes and ideas with Matranga as far back as 1998, when the pair first conceived the idea of collaborating. Charles Walker, who spent the better part of the decade playing drums for the much-loved Indiana troupe Chamberlain, made the next connection last year when he found himself sitting in for ex-Quicksand bassist Sergio Vega’s solo project on a UK tour with Onelinedrawing. The band solidified when Arenas and Walker migrated to the West Coast in late 2000, shortly followed by New York native and former Texas is the Reason bassist Scott Winegard, who filled out the band’s developing line-up.

Together, New End Original’s first record is a big rock blast—a solid combination of everything that made the members’ previous outfits so compelling, but carefully relevant and blissfully unguarded all the same. An exercise in diversity, Thriller is as raw as it is calculated, shuffling from high-energy hard rock to meticulously crafted pop songcraft and Velvets-styled melancholy both seamlessly and unapologetically.

Aside from their much-feted debut at Noise Pop, the band went on to play a string of West Coast dates with Jets To Brazil in late April before recording Thriller with former Texas producer Brian McTernan. The album will be preceded by a mailorder-only single, a single´s series on Germany´s Defiance Records, a German and UK jaunt in August, and a full-scale US tour in late September, climaxing at Jade Tree’s New York City CMJ Showcase.