late night drive home – “Believe Me (Even If I’m Lying)” [Video]

Since forming in 2019, the El Paso natives have gained a cult following of 1 Million monthly listeners charmed by their Gen-Z perspective that also has a penchant for nostalgia.  On this EP the band looked to 90’s grunge staples such as Sonic Youth and Smashing Pumpkins to incorporate heavier instrumentation, while also boasting the modern influence of acts like Dominic Fike and The 1975.

Amidst a backdrop of pleading vocals and open D tuned post-rock guitars, late night drive home share their retro MTV style music video for lead single Believe Me (Even If I’m Lying)”, directed by guitarist Juan “Ockz” Vargas with co-direction from Jaydog and Edbar.

“Believe Me (Even If I’m Lying)” is a collection of emotions digitally transferred into audio,” the band comments. “Take what you want, read in between the lines. We leave these lyrics up for your own interpretation, find your own meanings for listening to this song.”

A mission to Tornillo, Texas’s Sonic Ranch with Sonny Diperri (The Drums, Animal Collective) launched the beginning of the new project, and fittingly the track “Opening a Door”.  The band later followed up with engineer Ross Ingram in search of a darker sound, resulting in the grungier vibe of lead single “Believe Me”. From there, the idea of using open D tuning for most of the EP was born as the band explains, “We wanted a cohesive sound between all songs while incorporating the cold, sad feeling of a winter EP.”

Featuring lead singer Andre Portillo, guitarist Juan “Ockz” Vargas, bassist Freddy Baca and drummer Brian Dolan, late night drive home began in 2019 when Portillo and Ockz learned how to play their instruments while simultaneously learning how to produce music. When 2020 hit, the two best friends spent their time together uploading their work on SoundCloud and as they started to gain momentum online, Ockz recruited Baca, his cousin, who learned how to play the bass in order to join the band, and their longtime friend Brian Dolan on drums. On one fateful day in 2021, they released their hit song “Stress Relief” on all streaming platforms and their lives were forever changed. “Stress Relief” accumulated over 100M streams across all platforms, which resulted in a milestone record deal with Epitaph Records.

The writing and recording process for ‘i’ll remember you for the same feeling you gave me as i slept’ allowed the band’s members to talk about the changes they were each going through individually. When coming down from the high of their first national tour, a veil of uncertainty had been following Ockz as a nomadic lifestyle had led him to pack up and move five times in the last three years. He was able to redirect this frenzied headspace with the racing instrumentals heard on the EP. Meanwhile, Andre (vocals) wanted to explore feelings of isolation and purgatory within the lyrics. Bleeding with a cry for help, he paints a picture of what it’s like to be trapped with your thoughts all day, echoing some of the battles he was dealing with mentally.

On a mission to boost representation of Latin artists within indie music, late night drive home are stopping at nothing while also remembering their roots growing up in rural America; take a journey with this youthful indie band as they evolve their sound and find new ways of approaching the indie rock genre. Just being able to create art is enough for them.

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Fire Note Staff

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