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The Upbeat: Novada

Of the Oakland Press

Posted: Friday, November 20, 2009

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Formed: Early 2004 in Saline

Sound: Modern rock, or by the band’s own description, “In 1983 David Bowie and the Cars have a onenight stand with an indie rock band from Detroit City.”

Members: Hayze — vocals; (Saline); John Shannon — guitar (Chelsea); Robert John Baber — bass (Grosse Isle); Jamie Surgener — drums (Pontiac).

Influences: The Cars, David Bowie, Blur, the Cure, U2, the Police, T.Rex, the Smiths, Radiohead, the Clash, Afghan Whigs.

Day Jobs: Hayze and Baber are full-time musicians. Shannon works as a hair stylist and instructor at Evada in Ann Arbor. Surgener is a film animator currently working on Tim Burton’s 3-D adaptation of “Alice in Wonderland.”

What’s In a Name? Hayze, the former bassist in Solid Frog who was one of the last 50 contestants for the “Rock Star: INXS” TV reality show, says Novada wanted “a band name that was timeless” and thought about a geographic name, á la Boston or Chicago. They chose Nevada first, but in looking through a book on word origins they stumbled upon Novada, “which means something in different countries. In Spanish it means ‘no speak.’ In Sweden it’s a synonym for the word serendipity; I didn’t know what that meant at the time and I looked it up and thought, ‘Oh, a beautiful, accidental discovery. That’s it, then.’ ”

On The Verge: With more than 400 shows two albums, two EPs and a DVD behind it, Novada currently has new management — which also handles Saving Abel and Taddy Potter — that has several record companies interested in the band. “He’s mostly trying to get overseas labels,” Hayze says. “A lot of U.K. labels have responded. He thinks us going over there to break the band will be easier than here because of the style (of the music), just like it worked for the White Stripes and Kings of Leon. I think Tom Petty did the same thing back in the day, so it’s exciting.”

Hear ’Em: Novada has just released its second album, “Transmissions.”

See ’Em: The group will celebrate the release of “Transmissions” tonight at the Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale. Cardif Giant, the Drags and Radar Pilot are also on the bill. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $7. Call (248) 544-3030 or visit www. themagicbag.com.

Surf ’Em: www.myspace.com/novada

Web Site: www.myspace.com/novada

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