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The Future of rock and roll

"The future of rock n' roll starts with the tried-and-true essentials.We came out here with a guitar and an amplifier, a couple of sleeping bags, a dog, and a color T.V. that didn't work very well, says Ric Autumn, the oldest member of the Bainbridge-based rock band the Future.The band was formed several years ago by brothers Erik and Mike Future, and after practicing for months at Seabold Hall, is recording its first full length album in Canada this weekend.Besides practicing twice a week, the band has prepared for the trip across the border by writing down the serial numbers their impressive array of equipment, so it isn't taxed upon reentry.The first thing they are going to think (at the border), Autumn says, is that we are terrorists or drug addicts. So we are getting prepared. Most of the band members have long hair, and Autumn is missing a few teeth. But neighbors apparently haven't had any problem with the band when it practices in the Seabold Hall, even though members say the group has been labeled as one of the loudest bands anybody's ever heard live.In their months of practicing, the group has only received one complaint, when a police officer showed up one night. Actually, the police officer was really cool, Mike Future says. He really liked us. He stayed and listened to one or two of our songs.The neighbor who called in the complaint did so because he was sick and trying to sleep, band members say.If I was sick, I wouldn't want to hear us either, Autumn says. The last thing I would want to hear is this band banging away.Although the band may cure a craving for loud jams, the aural havoc that shook the hall as they practiced earlier this month definitely wouldn't be considered a palliative for feeble ears.We've blown the breakers in this place three times, Future said, as the band paused between songs and Autumn took a swig from a one-litre bottle of Coca-Cola.The quintet consists of two guitars, a base, and drums, accompanied by Micah Paulsen on the mike.Paulsen, age 19, sings about relationships, emotional turmoil, and even a few Bainbridge-inspired subjects.The song Remember, for example, is about revisiting the old high school.I was hanging out at the high school when it was rebuilt, and I sort of started thinking about all of the memories that came back from there, Paulsen says. We can go back, but we're not the same person that we were.The band's fan base includes high schoolers, college kids, and even a few 30-year-olds - in other words, just about everybody.But, Erik Future says, We haven't gotten a lot of Bainbridge support, because there is nowhere on the island to play rock.The group has played some gigs in Seattle, but the scene is difficult to crack, the band says.I've had a lot of problems with clubs, Mike Future says, because they don't want to have any rock n' roll.Seattle's a really weird music scene with the decline of grunge, he says, observing that many bands have moved towards a punk revival or experimental music.That makes it all the more difficult for a post-grunge band like the Future, who cite Bush, Stone Temple Pilots, and classic rock groups like Led Zepplin and the Doors as influences.But the band does its thing well, meshing the driving power of grunge with the technical adroitness of Autumn's classic rock-inflected guitar.The veteran member of the Future, Autumn fronted a major label band of his own in the 1970s, touring at one point with Jefferson Starship.Although the new band's current record will be self produced and on an independent label, the group is still shooting for the big time.Several Seattle radio stations may play some of their songs, they say, and the Canadian Greenhouse Studios, where they are recording, has produced records for such famous performers as Sarah McLaughlin and Alice in Chains.The Future boys, muses Autumn. They are going to keep us going right through the wall, until we find our niche in music, man."

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