WILMINGTON, NC — Autumn Brand and her musical partner Daniel Cook freely describe themselves as “fairly indecisive” people, but when it came to choosing a band name, they kept circling back to “The One Eighties.”
“It was a joke name at first, because we wanted to start an 80s synth band,” Autumn Brand said. “And then we were like, you know, that band name kind of worked for us.”
That’s because like so many of us, Autumn and Daniel found some twists and turns on their road to success. After getting some national attention for their music with their first band New Reveille, the band’s record label shut down. Then, the COVID 19 pandemic took over the world. Studio sessions, which created opportunities for musicians to collaborate, experiment and build upon each other, were suddenly non-existent.
“When you’re in a creative field that requires you to work with other people, you find yourself working in a vacuum,” Daniel Cook said. “That’s just hard.”
The pair started writing new music with the thought it would be the next New Reveille project, but quickly realized their sound had changed with the times. So, The One Eighties took their path in a new direction.
“By the time we got to mid-pandemic, it became clear this was a new thing altogether,” Cook said.
Working in that musical vacuum, Daniel and Autumn found themselves creating their own home studio and working with off-site musicians to develop the material that became their debut album as a new group, “Minefields.”
“We’d send them a track, say here’s the track. Just play something to it. They’d send us a drum track and that becomes the foundation for the song,” Cook said. “Fortunately we got some really cool tracks and we spent a lot of time building on that ourselves with all this instrumentation.”
It’s a sound they describe as having a folk foundation, with elements of 80s synth pop, country and even 90s grunge. “Minefields,” according to Cook, is a reflection of the pandemic era in which we all lived with uncertainty about the future.
“Sonically it’s reflective of the times where we were at in our life and where we were as a society, in terms of mass isolation,” Cook said. “We called it Minefields, because you never really know what you’re stepping into in life, but you have to kind of step forward anyway. That’s what we were grappling with. Crossroads in both our lives.”
Those roads lead the Raleigh-based team down I-40 to the Port City for their Wilmington debut as “The One Eighties.” The full band performs on Saturday, January 20th at Bourgie Nights on Princess Street. Ahna Ell opens the evening.
Autumn and Daniel say to expect a dynamic show with an intimate acoustic portion featuring the duo, but then a high-energy rock element at other times. And despite the cold temperatures predicted for this weekend, the team expects to thaw things out.
“We’re gonna warm it up!” Brand said.
:: While a newly formed group, Autumn and Daniel have played in Wilmington before, noting appearances at the since-shuttered Whiskey and The Soap Box.
:: Learn more about The One Eighties on-line here.
:: You can listen to “Minefields” now on Spotify and other streaming services.
:: The Scene: Wilmington and Just For Buyers Realty are giving away TWO pairs of tickets for free to this Saturday’s show. To enter, all you have to do is sign up for the FREE weekly newsletter from The Scene Wilmington. You’ll get concert notes and insights on the local music industry delivered to your inbox each Thursday. Enter the contest here.