Photo credit: Sacha Lecca


“I don’t consider us a throwback band; we aren’t trying to sound ‘old’ or anything,” says L.A. Solano, guitarist and co-founder of New York City rock outfit The Mystery Lights, of the band’s fuzzy garage rock stylings.  “We’re interested in 60s garage, punk from the 70s and 80s, all kinds of stuff, and we try to incorporate it into what we do.”

The band, which began as a high school three-piece punk project in sunny California, has been through several different phases member-wise, but Solano and co-founder Michael Brandon have been the constants. “We played around our hometowns in California on the weekends, practiced in an auto shop, and spent most of our time there writing and recording.”

Eventually, the pair decided to head to the Big Apple—Brandon first, with Solano following suit shortly thereafter. “I only planned to stay for a month, crashed on a friend’s couch, and never left,” says Solano with a laugh.  “We couch-hopped for a year and a half; it took a while for us to find our bearings, but we figured it out.”

Now, The Mystery Lights are the inaugural group signed to  Wick Records, Daptone’s rock imprint, and will release their debut full length album on June 24th.  “We did a 7” with Daptone earlier in the year, kind of like a trial run for them and for us, and it turned out to be a really good fit,” explains Solano.  “Recording was a fun experience, they track everything live so you have to be on top of your game.  It was really cool to channel the songs through the Daptone vibe; one thing I love about Daptone Records is that they’re not trying to sound ‘old’, they’re just locked into recording in the way that produces the sound they like. They have such an organic way of doing what they do.”

Before the record is released, the group will tour for two weeks in Europe.  The Mystery Lights will then bring their high-octane energy back to New York City for an album release show at Mercury Lounge on June 24th.  “I’m so excited to have a proper record out in the world, it’s been a long time coming,” says Solano. “I can’t wait to hear what people think.”

Pre-order The Mystery Lights

Purchase tickets to the album release show:

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