Combining indie rock with the brisk fervency of merengue, the swing of son with the thump of funk and the memorable melodies of pop with the twist and turns of prog rock, New York Cityâ€™s Boom Box Repair Kit is claiming musical territory all their own. They borrow from traditional Spanish Caribbean music in much the same way the Bad Brains borrow from Reggae, the Red Hot Chili Peppers borrow from funk and Gogol Bordello borrow from Balkan folk music. While some say theyâ€™re defining a new breed of Afro-Caribbean rock, others feel that they simply stand out among the masses as a band in which no genre aptly captures their sound, nor do they fit within any particular scene or fan base.
Born to Dominican immigrants in Brooklyn, NY, singer/songwriter Lael Llaverias grew up listening to music from his homeland witnessed the rise of hip-hop and played in alternative bands that swept glam rock under the carpet. Although itâ€™s hard to pinpoint exactly when Boom Box Repair Kit was conceived, a good starting point would probably be when Lael drafted bassist Arturo Acosta and drummer Frank Pace to play in a genre jumping Christian rock band. They released an EP and a full-length under the name Supermodel Stalker, but after touring the east coast and down south, they felt that the band was not headed in the right direction. They wanted a sound that would push the envelope and fulfill their goals, both artistically and professionally.
After some time off, they regrouped and sought out guitarist/composer Evan Ubiera. Having spent ten years in the Dominican Republic, he gained first hand exposure to that culture. While playing in NYC afro-funk/reggae group Tinsaedu, he answered Laelâ€™s web post, which cited influences such as funk, rock, country and curiously enough, Dominican music. After joining the band in 2007, it made sense for them to allow their roots to enter the bandâ€™s sound. With that sound came a new vision, a new purpose and a new band name.
In 2008 they primarily focused on crafting their sound and recording, but took time to play a few key shows at renowned venues such as Pianos, Trash Bar, The Pyramid and Cake Shopâ€™s â€œPogo In Togo.â€ They also made it into the top four in MySpace Latinoâ€™s Sponsor My Band national search. As finalists, they played a showcase to a sold out, roaring crowd at The Canal Room.
Now Boom Box Repair Kit presents their debut album, My Dear Antagonist, a dance driven record thatâ€™s sometimes fun, other times dismal, but always thriving on the similarities between musical genres, not the differences. They are currently playing regional shows throughout the North East and planning a US tour towards the end of the year.