Dig Baton Rouge

Time to Graduate

By Tara Bennett

After performing together for nearly 10 years, synth-pop sensation Prom Date has decided to part and pursue new ventures in the next phase of their lives. For singer and keyboardist David Fuller it is nice to feel a reprieve.

“It’s been a long time coming, all of us are really ambitious people and have a lot that we want to do in our lives,” said Fuller. “We were ready for a new step…Sometimes the best thing to do is just to have a new chapter and a clean slate to try something new.”

The band recently performed their final concert at Siberia in New Orleans, and are now going to say goodbye to the capital city on Friday, August 7 at the Spanish Moon.

“Baton Rouge and Spanish Moon were always kind of our home base,” said Fuller. “It’s a mix of emotions of course. I’m really sad to see it go because I have so many wonderful memories attached to it. I think we all feel that way, but there’s also a relief that comes with letting go.”

Prom Date was formed in the summer of 2007 with singer-keyboardist Brett Burke, a Tulane University student, and Fuller and bassist Nick Boudreau, LSU students, discovering their mutual passion for music. For a long time, the group went without a name, which finally evolved from Burke’s personal Myspace that was used for song covers and recordings. According to Fuller, many of the members of Prom Date have attended one another’s proms.

“So we thought it was an appropriate title,” said Fuller. “It has a nice little ring to it. It sticks in people’s minds at least.”

Prom Date released its first full-length album Portraits last August before going on a cross-country tour. The band’s sound evolved over the years, turning into the 1980s-inspired, electronic keyboard-based snyth-pop the group is now known for. The bands who influenced their musical gears are Erasure, Metric, New Order, Human League, and Cut Copy either in orchestration or vocalization. The beauty of their sound, came from the synthesizer, which can get people moving whether the song is slow or fast.

“The beauty of the synthesizer any texture, any sound, anything you can dream up, you can make,” said Fuller. “It was really fun learning how to make electronic-based music.”

The heart of the band’s songs focus on the feeling of being at a dance, losing yourself in the moment and wanting to move with your friends and celebrate.

With their new horizons in sight, vocalist Christine Peirce will continue performing with her Lafayette-based band Rareluth, a glam pop group as other Prom Date members will explore new musical ground, or start a new chapter in their life, either by moving from Baton Rouge, or turning their focus onto college.

“I plan on going back to school and do another undergraduate degree,” said Fuller, who will be pursuing an engineering degree at LSU. “Music is in our blood. It doesn’t matter what we’re doing, where we’re living, we’ll be making music even if it’s not Prom Date.”

Over the course of the years, there are moments from Prom Date’s history that stick out in Fuller’s mind, such as playing their first gig at Daiquiri Café at Port Allen, going on tour in Austin for their first out-of-the-state show, and their first collaboration with Peirce after meeting her at an 80’s-themed prom.

“Here we are, years later,” said Fuller.

For those who’ve never attended a Prom Date show, Fuller says you can expect everything we loved from the 80’s including shiny outfits, glitter, sequins, high heels, fishnet, black lights, confetti, balloons and light up instruments. The reaction from the crowds are always energetic and Fuller says the band enjoys trying to dance along with the audience while still playing their music.

“We love the energy exchange with the audience,” said Fuller. “That’s the experience we want to create at our shows. It’s a safe haven for you to celebrate whatever you felt like celebrating.”

For the final show, the band will stick to its tried and true form, while paying tribute to everyone who has been with the band over the years. Several former members of Prom Date will be in attendance at the show, and according to Fuller the concert is for them just as much as the current members and the fans.

“We just want to say thank you to everyone,” said Fuller. “It’ll be a reunion of sorts as well as a goodbye. It’s a significant chapter of all of our lives and I think the Spanish Moon is the perfect place to close out.”

There are many fond memories of Spanish Moon for the band. Fuller remembers when they first started out how much they wanted to perform at the local venue and had to prove they could bring in a crowd.

“That was our first accomplishment for ourselves,” said Fuller. “That’s where all of our favorite shows happened. To share the stage with some of our favorite acts coming through Baton Rouge was a significant achievement. Now looking back, it’s been our favorite place to play…There’s no place more meaningful to us to have our last show.”

Once the band takes its finale bow, Prom Date will still carry on its presence by continuing to sell albums and updating their Facebook page with updates on the band members. While the band currently has no plans to reunite, Fuller says it’s not entirely out of the cards.

“You never know,” said Fuller. “The future is a foggy crystal ball for me…We can communicate and collaborate from anywhere…We just have to wait and see.”

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