Teenage Moods’ music is well-known in Minneapolis and across the country, but their story is not.
The current incarnation of the band started when singer Gordon Byrd met bass player Jillian Schroeder soon after arriving in Minneapolis. The group took off in 2007.
“I met Jillian through Ragstock and ’zine stuff,” Byrd said. “It all kind of happened at once when I moved back from Colorado, living in my van [and] doing a one-man band.”
The singer-songwriters of the ’60s, along with ’90s alt-rock hero Kim Gordon, are influences on the group’s dissonant, pop-laden rock.
“I met Gordon at a house show nine years ago,” guitarist Kyle Sobczak said. “He turned me on to tape culture and all sorts of cool stuff that I love to this day. It left an impression on me and my music.”
Teenage Moods has gone through a few personnel mix-ups. The current lineup includes guitarist and back-up vocalist Kyle Sobczak and drummer Nikki Eskola. Being close as a band is vital to their identity.
“We are teamwork-oriented, flowery, G-rated sweetness,” Eskola said. “Jillian has always done some amazing artwork for the band, and she makes every new project feel special in some way.”
The band is primarily a musical outlet for Byrd and Schroeder; they are the two core members of the band and are primarily responsible for songwriting duties.
The band initially started as a duo. Once they released their first record, “Grow,” things began to change.
“When we wrote ‘Grow’ we ended up ‘growing’ two new members of the band,” Schroeder said.
Since then Teenage Moods has had singles released on Matador and local label 25 Diamonds. Right now, the band is focusing on playing live.
“I can speak for everyone when I say we’d all enjoy doing this long-term and on a larger scale,” Eskola said. “Playing to a lot of people — isn’t that what every band wants?”
The band is currently writing their next album. They hope to release it before the year ends and tour extensively in the spring.
When discussing the identity of the band, Byrd is reflective and tacks on his own thoughts on “growth.”
“The purpose of this project for me is to get the music outside of my head and watching my friends grow within it,” Byrd said. “I’ve watched Jillian grow; I’ve watched Nikki grow. Kyle never stops getting better at music. Half of it is the qualities of the people involved, and the other half is the quality of those people as musicians.”