California indie pop band Saint Motel was formed in 2007 by pianist/vocalist A.J. Jackson and classically trained guitarist Aaron Sharp, who met when they were both film students at Chapman University in Orange, California. Recruiting bassist Dak Lerdamornpong, who worked at a nearby sushi restaurant, and drummer Greg Erwin, who attended another nearby college, they started writing music together, crafting a slick, bouncy, retro, tropicalia-influenced sound that was the perfect foil to Jackson's smooth, suave croon.
Putting their film school experience to good use, they created eye-catching, retro videos for all six of the tracks on their 2009 debut EP ForPlay. Their catchy songs of love and good times were a hit, and they consolidated their success with sustained touring. Visuals remained an important element of their work and many of their stage shows were spectacular theatrical events with names like "The Valentine's Zombie Prom." Their debut album, Voyeur, was released in 2012 and was critically well-received. In 2014, the band signed with Parlophone, and the title track from their My Type EP hit the Billboard alternative charts, as well as the song charts in parts of Western Europe. Led by the single "Move," which was one of several songs on the album accompanied by a 360-degree virtual reality video, Saint Motel's second LP, Saintmotelevision, followed in 2016. ~ John D. Buchanan