MUSE had the great opportunity to talk with Art Barrios from the band, Audio Karate who are getting back together this weekend to celebrate the Re-Issue of Space Camp on Vinyl.
The band is doing two shows in Southern California one in San Diego’s Soda Bar tomorrow night and Sold Out show this Saturday at the Hi Hat in Highland Park with Go Betty Go, Odd Robot and The Gutter Daises.
Audio Karate is Arturo Barrios (vocals/guitar), Jason Camacho (guitar), Justo Gonzales (bass) and Gabriel Camacho (drums). They formed in the mid-90s under the name “The Goonz” and changed their name upon signing to Kung Fu Records in 2001. Kung Fu founder and Vandals bassist Joe Escalante took the band under his wing after hearing a tape demo that Art handed Kris Roe (The Ataris) at a show.
In May 2002, they released Space Camp (produced by Trever Keith of Face to Face)—a sunny poppunk record bursting with adolescent sentiment and bright riffs. The band toured heavily, and the album’s single, “Nintendo ’89,” made its way onto MTV and Fuse. In 2004, they played a leg of the Vans Warped Tour and released their follow-up record, Lady Melody (produced by Bill Stevenson of Descendents/All). Lady Melody was a striking, dark departure from Space Camp—packing growling vocals, layered melodies and catchy hooks into songs like “Jesus is Alive and Well (And Living Mexico),” “Hey Maria” and “Gypsyqueen.” The record straddled pop-punk convention and technical oddity, with unique key changes and riffs that seemed to sound “wrong” while sounding gloriously right. Even Stevenson wondered how they did it, marveling at times during their recording sessions: “Technically, this shouldn’t work.”
Following headline tours for Lady Melody, the band went on hiatus in 2006, influencing a decade of pop-punk in their wake and garnering fans from some of the biggest bands in the genre. The band just recently announced they will be playing FEST 17 on October 26-28 tickets on sale now.
Interview with Art Barrios of Audio Karate: