Rosemead, California’s own Audio Karate announced this week they are doing a couple reunion shows to celebrate the vinyl reissue of their 2002 album, Space Camp.
“Space Camp” was originally released in 2002 on Kung Fu Records, and was pressed on vinyl for the first time recently via Wiretap Records / Hidden Home Records. Tickets for both shows are on sale now.
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. This is going too be a show not to miss for all pop punk fans!