It’s a busy lunch hour at the diner inside the historic Harrell’s Pharmacy as the Kingsville-based progressive rock group, Evacuate Whale, squeeze themselves in a small booth in the corner of the restaurant.
After a nice, long hiatus this summer, they arrive prepared and determined to discuss the future of Evacuate Whale.
But first things first, Evacuate Whale, is it?
They all glance at one another and chuckle as the question comes up.
“It’s from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” explained Ryan Drum, the man behind the sound effects of the group.
Inspired by a small, quirky detail of both the film and novel by Douglas Adams where the mammals of the sea left Earth, it oddly intrigued them.
“It just kind of stuck out to us,” drummer John Angulo, chimed in.
A few of the members have already performed on stage with one another as a group formerly known as Sistine Ceiling.
Formed back in 2011, they neutrally decided to call it quits due to artistic differences. After Angulo and former guitarist of Sistine Ceiling, Alex Maldonado, informally began playing acoustically together in their dorm room, they invited some old friends as well as new ones to bring together a unique sound.
“We just decided that we still wanted to jam and pursue what we were looking for in the beginning,” said lead vocalist, Nicholas Harper, who was also the lead vocals for Sistine Ceiling.
An idea that was formed in December 2012, the group didn’t begin performing until a few months later providing them the realization that this was becoming something greater than expected.
“It just built itself from there,” Drum said. “It was just a spur of the moment.”
While only performing a number of ten times, they have explored various music scenes in a short time span.
“We have performed from areas in the Valley to those in San Antonio so far,” said bassist Marco Lugo.
With each and every performance, the members have seen growth in themselves as well as interest and appreciation from various audiences.
“Depending on the venue, it always has a completely different feel to it,” said Maldonado. “It’s unique every time.”
With a few months out of practice, the band is quickly getting prepared for a two-night showcase this coming Friday and Saturday.
Phillip Perez, the creator of an organization called My 361 Live, came to them and asked them if they would be willing to perform.
“I’ve known Nick, John, and Alex from campus and from Sistine Ceiling,” Perez said. “They are all great, talented guys and have a unique sound. I wanted to bring a mixture of genres for Saturday’s show and I thought of them.”
My 361 Live is an organization that is dedicated to promoting and supporting local music and musicians using social media outlets.
My 361 Live and Zero’s Hard Rock Club will be hosting the “End of Summer Music Slam 2013” to benefit South Texas Children’s Home Ministries.
Twenty bands, including Evacuate Whale, from the Corpus Christi area and other areas, including Victoria and Beeville, will be performing Friday and Saturday evening at 7 p.m.
“These bands are coming out and performing for free to dedicate their time for our community,” Perez said. “Try to come out to the show to support local music, and if not this one, be sure to check out another show.”
With this event and a few others marked on their calendars, things are looking up for Evacuate Whale as they continue to practice and develop new material during their already busy schedules.
“There is a lot going on and we are looking to expand a lot in the next year,” Angulo said.
The successful progression that this band has achieved is not only helping them move forward, but also not letting them forget how they got here.
“Don’t second guess yourself, you know, just do it,” Harper said on perusing a career in music.
They all nod their heads in agreement and emphasize to never, ever stop playing.
“Have the confidence to mess up,” said Angulo.