Formed in Washington, D.C. in January of 2014, the EFFECTS are Devin Ocampo, Matthew Dowling, and David Rich. On September 29th, Dischord will release the band’s debut album, Eyes to the Light, on CD/LP/Download.
A multi-instrumentalist, Ocampo is a former member of the bands Faraquet, Medications, Smart Went Crazy, and Deathfix, all of whom released music on Dischord. He has also toured and recorded with Mary Timony, Beauty Pill, and J. Robbins.
Dowling was the bassist and co-leader of Deleted Scenes, while Rich was the drummer in the instrumental group, Buildings. Both released music on the experimental-minded (and now defunct) local record label, Sockets.
Devin met both Matt and David years before and while there had been talk of a possible collaboration everyone had their own projects at the time. However, by 2014 all were between bands and it finally made sense to get together and start something new.
For the trio, playing together was a nice change in routine. It was a new configuration of musicians, rather than a recombination of old friends and former bandmates, which happens regularly in the close-knit music scene of Washington D.C. Matt and David offered a fresh perspective and (possibly) gave the Devin a nudge out of his comfort zone.
“When we first started playing, I was like, ‘I’m going to write all the songs and find people to do what I say’,” explains Ocampo. “I had gotten tired of the bands I was in splitting up or changing line-ups. The solution seemed to be a more solo-type band that could never be taken away from me. However, quickly it became more of a gang mentality as we learned what a great combination of personalities and ideas we had. We are all working at this equally.”
The EFFECTS spent 2015 recording a series of singles at Devin’s home studio, releasing them digitally and on cassette at a bi-monthly clip (give or take a few weeks). “On those cassettes, we weren’t sure what kind of band we were going to be as we had so many influences,” says Devin. “Should we focus on tunefulness, experimentation, or just rock out? And I decided we didn’t have to choose. We could be everything and anything without hesitation. I also started pulling a bit more of what was the music of Faraquet into my writing — which, in my mind, meant anything that felt slightly self-indulgent to me. I had been trying to weed that out for some reason, but in the EFFECTS, I thought, why not let it mix in with the rest.” In between tape releases the band played regularly around D.C. and toured the east coast sporadically with Field Music, Pinkwash, Puff Pieces and Bells.
Last year, the EFFECTS were able to dedicate their full attention to writing and recording a full-length LP. The result is Eyes To The Light, which includes nine songs recorded and mixed with J. Robbins at Magpie Cage Studio in Baltimore, Maryland. If the cassette singles were one-off, self-contained ideas, Eyes to the Light is meant to work as a cohesive set of songs — a deep dive into the band’s collective identity and musical histories.
the EFFECTS on Tour
8.26.17 – Washington, D.C. @ The Dew Drop Inn
9.26.17 – Washington, D.C. @ DC9
10.25.17 – Washington, DC @ Black Cat
11.02.17 – Annapolis, MD @ The Metropolitan
11.04.17 – Chicago, IL @ Subterranean