Fans of Pensacola’s Paloma have a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks. EP “Dos,” the aptly-named follow-up to their first EP, “Uno,” is set for release in early spring, and front-man and guitarist Giovanni Lugo said it will take the band into new territory. “You will know very much it’s a Paloma record due to the vocals and guitar parts,” he explained, “but it leans toward extremes.”
While the tone of “Uno” was, according to Lugo, “very middle of the road, familiar sounds,” EP “Dos” has the band exploring a softer side as well as “harder territory, more vicious songs.”
The theme of the album is relationships, which Lugo, who tackles most of the songwriting duty, said he enjoyed examining. While he considers “Uno” more “faith centered and introspective,” he said their latest effort “brings a wider range of emotions and a fresher sound.”
Calling “Dos,” honest and sincere, Lugo said it will take the listener through all the periods of a relationship, “from meeting someone and the initial contact, to the honeymoon period, to the confusion, the doubt, the aggravation and then being in it for the long haul. You realize you have a lot of be grateful for when you can share parts of your life with someone, but it’s not all sugar. It can be very frustrating, but it can be very rewarding.”
Although he has written about such topics before, (“Tigerpaw, from “Uno”), Lugo said his previous work was “a lot of vague references” whereas “Dos” is more specific.
The band, also comprised of Nathan Dillaha (guitar) Hale Leal (bass) and Aaron Finlay (drums), is working with musician Chris Staples, former vocalist and guitarist of the Pensacola indie band, Twothirtyeight. Lugo said Paloma was excited to work with their longtime friend and mentor who many Pensacola musicians count as an influence. “Chris has been playing, touring, recording for so long. I feel that as a musician he has helped shape and mold a certain sound for this area, starting with an over driven fender amp sound. I, myself, can sense his influence in the way I play with some of the guitar riffs I write.”
Lugo said the band began recording “Dos” with Staples in November and spent five days laying down tracks for the album. Work reconvened after the holidays and is currently getting final touch ups and mixing before post production mastering begins. He said plans are to release the EP late this month or early April.
Paloma, named as an homage to Lugo’s Puerto Rican roots, has gained a dedicated local following since forming in early 2011. Each of its members has played in various bands in the Pensacola area for more than 15 years, and they have all known each other since grade school. In fact, if not for Leal, Lugo’s life would have turned out a lot different. “I almost joined the military, but Hale was playing drums in a punk band. He ended up moving on to other things and the guys asked me if I wanted to join in. Who knows what I would have become? My parents probably would have loved it… something with a lot more security,” he said laughing.
Although he’s not sure where the band is headed, he said right now everyone is content getting to do something they love and getting the music out there. “This started as a creative outlet, and the thing that makes me most grateful and humble is the feedback and response. We are very fortunate to be able to be on the other side of the microphone and be able to play and share our music.”
Lugo said they are excited about a possible gig in Atlanta and are planning a show in Birmingham. Their next appearance will be Saturday at Pensacola’s Art Party, a show case for avant-garde artists in the area. “A show like this reaches different demographics. This will be a whole different audience, potentially 3,000 people who may have never heard us before.” He promises a great performance for fans new and old. “We will play every song we have. It will be a very full set.” Tickets are available at www.artpartypensacola.com or at the door on Saturday.
Currently, “Uno” is available for download at www.palomamusic.bandcamp.com. The new EP will be available for purchase on iTunes and at Revolver Records in Pensacola.