“‘Surf Rider’ seems like it’s going to be a happy song,” says Roby Behrens with a straight face and a mischievous glint. “It’s about a guy who kills his wife then gets eaten by sharks.”
Happy or not, it certainly fits in nicely with the rest of the Jolly Llamas catalogue. Since 2009, guitarists Behrens and Marc Cavigli have written tales of terror, sorrow and ghoulish delight set to addictive, pop melodies with a folk flair. This is the music Weezer would be writing if Rivers Cuomo was raised on Americana and H.P. Lovecraft.
The Jolly Llamas began as a duo when they were in college studying filmmaking, and they both now run local studio Lucid Sound and Picture. As their video production has expanded, the band has grown into a quartet, with Jordan Jones on bass and Lucas Aton on drums.
In 2015, the Llamas released a five-track EP, Story Rock, and they’re currently working on a music video for the album’s first track, “Llama Sun.” The guys have also been hard at work writing new material for another EP, to be announced later this year. Of course, they’re doing it in true Llama fashion.
“One of our newer songs is about a girl who cuts people up,” Behrens says with a laugh.
“But she’s in medical school,” interjects Cavigli.
“She’s in medical school, but she also loves doing it,” replies Behrens.
The Jolly Llamas will be playing the Crepe Place this Saturday with local act Bananarchy and San Franciscan rockers, We Arsons.
INFO: 9 p.m. Saturday, April 29. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $8. 429-6994.