Photo by Alexandra Valenti
Another Austin band with Houston ties is off to an audacious start. Rockers Electric Touch's Live EP topped Amazon.com's MP3 Albums best-seller list this morning. Although at the moment they've yielded the top spot to Beck's brand-new (and, to be honest, a little underwhelming) Modern Guilt, they're holding strong at No. 2 amidst some pretty decent company: Beck's Odelay is No. 3, followed by Herbie Hancock's Maiden Voyage (Rudy Van Gelder Edition) and Coldplay's Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends.
Influenced by the Beatles, Rolling Stones and Strokes, Electric Touch's unreconstructed rock & roll has garnered a sizable regional following since the group was founded last year. The self-titled debut album from the quartet, featuring Houston-raised twin brothers Christopher Messina (guitar) and Louis Messina Jr. (drums), is due August 26 on Houston's Justice Records. Live is an EP the band has been selling at shows and, obviously, online.
The band is also creating a stir in more traditional media as well. Austin modern-rock radio station 101X has added "Dance" to its rotation, and Sirius Satellite Radio's Alt Nation channel has added "Love In Our Hearts."
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Electric Touch, which has played Coachella and Bonarroo already this year and will appear at Lollapalooza, Milwaukee's Summerfest and Austin City Limits later this summer, plays Warehouse Live July 23 with Phantom Planet and August 11 with Wild Sweet Orange. Leigh and Messina's father is longtime Houston concert kingpin Louis Messina, who founded PACE Concerts in the 1970s and The Messina Group, which owns Warehouse Live, in 2001.
"Some doors have opened for them but the music is what got them through those doors," comments their publicist, Melissa Dragich-Cordero. "The tunes are just there - that's the bottom line, I think."