The members of Social Studies may have once considered themselves history nerds, but they’ve grown up. And so has their sound.
The five-piece band from San Francisco released its sophomore effort, Developer, in late 2012, soaring its darling indie sound into something more moody, more personal and more impactful. The lineup went through a major change about three years ago, with singer Natalia Rogovin and drummer Michael Jirkovsky as the constants.
And 2014 promises to be a big year, as Social Studies actively works to put out its third full-length album. Jirkovsky expects it to be mixed by the end of the week, though the record has no name or release date yet.
“I’m really excited about it. I think it’s our best work to date,” he says. “We tracked it almost entirely live, and I think that energy of our live show really translates… It’s a logical step from Developer. It’s a bit more rocking. On the last record, we only had one guitar, and now we have two, so it’s a fuller sound.”
Sacramento concert-goers can see Social Studies—who might seem familiar from a number of Sacramento and Davis shows over the past few years, as well as appearances at Outside Lands and Noise Pop—on Saturday, March 1 at Luigi’s Fun Garden (1050 20th Street) at 8 p.m., with local artist Michael RJ Saalman and Portland rockers AAN. Cover is $8.
And as much as folks might fall in love with Social Studies and beg the members to move to Sacramento, Jirkovsky says the band has no plans to leave San Francisco—even though it’s the most expensive city in the country and musicians aren’t exactly rich.
“It would be easier somewhere else, but I think it makes you be a little more serious. Doing music in San Francisco is hard, so you know the people who are doing it are really driven,” he says, adding that there has been, indeed, a noticeable exodus over the past couple years.
“It seems like people are hungry to put a gravestone on the San Francisco music scene. It’s accurate to say it’s changing, but it’s not the end. There are too many creative people here for that.”
Take a listen to Social Studies here. “Terracur,” the first single off Developer, is an excellent way to start.