About The Velvet Teen
The Velvet Teen is an American independent rock trio from Sonoma County, California.
The Velvet Teen is originally the name of Judah Nagler's electronic solo project, whose official debut was made during a brief Icelandic tour that began on New Year's Eve, 1999. In 2000, during which Nagler and Logan Whitehurst were members of the band Little Tin Frog, the two began meeting in secret to write songs together under the moniker, 'The Secret Band.' When Little Tin Frog disbanded later that year, Nagler and Whitehurst continued their project and adopted Nagler's solo title, The Velvet Teen. They recorded and released Comasynthesis, a 6-song EP. In 2001, they were joined by bassist/vocalist Josh Staples and recorded their second EP, The Great Beast February.
The Velvet Teen signed to Slowdance Records, an independent record label from Portland, OR. They enlisted Death Cab for Cutie's Chris Walla to produce their first full-length album, Out of the Fierce Parade. Whitehurst, who was also an accomplished artist, created the etchings used as the album's artwork. Two music videos from the album were made and aired on MTV2.
Their second full-length album, Elysium, is a stylistic departure from their previous work, and does not contain any guitar. With a core instrumentation of drums, bass, and piano, other noteworthy elements include string and horn arrangements arranged by Adam Theis, the electronic glitches of "Satre Ringo", and the 12-minute, 1089-word epic "Chimera Obscurant." Elysium was recorded on a laptop by Judah and his brother Ephriam Nagler at various locations in Sonoma County, and mixed at Kingsize Soundlabs in Los Angeles by Dave Trumfio and Mike Krassner.
Several months before the release of Elysium, Whitehurst fell ill, was diagnosed with brain cancer, and subsequently left the band to focus on treatment. Casey Deitz was recruited as the new drummer after filling in for multiple shows.
The band recorded and released their third album, Cum Laude!, again with Judah and Ephriam producing and engineering. Cum Laude! was another stylistic departure and features an IDM-influenced, progressive rock sound that was louder, faster, and livelier than any of their previous work. The music video for "Tokyoto" was directed and edited by Nagler, and is the only music video from Cum Laude!. They supported the album on Minus the Bear's 2006 tour with P.O.S and Russian Circles.
Upon finishing the tour, Staples quit the band. On December 3, 2006, original drummer Logan Whitehurst died at his home in Los Banos, CA after a long battle with cancer.
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