Leaving promoters at the Joint, 14 below, the Cat Club, the Highlands and other venues drop-jawed in mid-week packed houses, 4-piece world-fusion hard-rock band [rejn], pronounced "rain," has exploded onto the L.A. local music scene.
Originally formed in February 2006 as the musical partnership between Chris VanBooven (lead vocals and rhythm guitar), Derrick Ambat (lead guitar and vocals), Chris Funkhouser (bass and vocals), and Adam Shahbaz (drums, percussion and vocals), the quartet has inspired thousands in the Los Angeles area to participate in the [rejn] experience.
While the guys mosh and the girls dance, the audience chants the infamous lyric in unison, "You're gonna die!" Across the stage, the hilarious antics and overall magnetic performance of the group are underscored by the back-flipping acrobatics of front man, Chris Van Booven.
This led [rejn] to become USA4Real's Artist of the Month in December 2007 with a prominent feature in the company's 10,000 subscriber strong newsletter.
[rejn] is more than an impressive live act. The sheer talent of the rather young membership is unparalleled, and listeners would be hard-pressed to find a more versatile group of musicians. Take into account the age of the group, with the oldest member clocking in at a mere 23 years old, and [rejn] really seems, as Daily Trojan writer Whitney Burke put it, "too serious to ignore."
The group's music spans the rock spectrum, from tranquil grooves, to thoughtful catharsis, to pure musical aggression. [rejn] often complements their avant-garde head-banger sound with unplugged but lively acoustic shows that highlight a light-hearted and more approachable side of the group.
That is not to say the wild electric performance is a turn-off in any way. The band's explorations in ethnically driven melodies and progressive rhythm combinations, coupled with their respect for the conventions of popular music have tapped into a surprisingly broad fan-base across ethnic and cultural lines.
Using MySpace as the main marketing vehicle, [rejn] has seen their fan base expand to include thousands of fans from various regions in the country and many in East Asia who have invested their time and money into the band via digital distribution media like iTunes, CB Baby, and have also requested hard copies of [rejn]'s debut album for sale on the band's MySpace page at www.myspace.com/rejnband.
The debut album, "Myriad Façade," was released in March 2007, a little over a year after the group's creation. Since that time the band has completely recouped its initial investment and has begun investing in the costs associated with touring.
"Myriad Façade" was recorded and mixed by Don Lithgow at DML Studios (Papa Roach, Unwritten Law), San Marcos, in the Fall of 2006, and mastered by Adam Ayan (A Perfect Circle, Linkin Park), at Gateway Studios.