A moody Los Angeles-based surf rock/garage outfit with a Merseybeat heart and a take-no-prisoners punk attitude, the Buttertones draw inspiration from bands like the Sonics, the Beatles, the Monks, Joy Division, and the Cramps. The group built a loyal fan base with their atmospheric live shows and albums like 2017′s Gravedigging and 2018′s Midnight in a Moonless Dream.
The Buttertones were formed in 2011 as a bedroom project for singer/guitarist Richard Araiza, drummer Modesto Cobian, and ex-Cherry Glazerr bassist Sean Redman. After issuing their cassette-only debut via Los Angeles-based garage pop label Lollipop, the band expanded into a five-piece, adding a second guitarist in Dakota Boettcher and bringing in saxophone player London Guzmån. Their sophomore long-player, American Brunch, appeared in 2015, and the following year saw the Buttertones ink a deal with Innovative Leisure, with whom they would release Gravedigging in 2017. A year later, they returned with their fourth full-length, and second for Innovative Leisure, the Jonny Bell-produced Midnight in a Moonless Dream. Following the album’s release, the group’s live activity was put on hold as drummer Cobian dealt with an eye infection that left him having to wear an eye patch. Also around this time, Boettcher parted ways with the group. In 2020, a rejuvenated Buttertones returned with their fifth full-length, the Bell-produced Jazzhound. ~ James Christopher Monger