Hailing from Peteluma, California, Tsunami Bomb is a now defunct punk rock band that started in the late 90′s. They gained much of their success in the 2000′s with relentless touring, stints on the Warped Tour, and backing by Kung Fu Records, who also supported albums by the Vandals, Blink 182, The Ataris, and MXPX. Tsunami Bomb never reached the mainstream success that many of their peers did, but their name still rings a strong chord with those who have experienced their music.
Tsunami Bomb’s first release was “The Invasion From Within” e.p. The band consisted of several different members at the time and had a female keyboardist singing back up vocals. Their first full length record on Kung Fu records, called “The Ultimate Escape”, features higher production quality, and a more coherent sound. The final record the band released before they broke up is “The Definitive Act”, which was their most successful selling album.
Beyond the history of the band or the politics of their break up, the music they created justifies their cult following. Anyone who went to the Warped Tour before it started to suck, knows about Tsunami Bomb and loves them. Their name is almost a secret code amongst people in their 20′s for a subculture that doesn’t speak out much. For someone who has never heard of Tsunami Bomb, the quintessential tracks for a new listener would be “Not Forever”, “Take the Reigns”, and “Being Alright”.
What’s most important about Tsunami Bomb, though, is their sincerity. Emily Whitehurst’s lyrical content uses allusion and metaphor, yet she still finds a place for a more direct tone that’s consistent with a serious subject matter. This can be heard most vividly in the track “Not Forever”, where Whitehurst says, “Who will be there when I need someone? Count on nobody and no one will let you down.” The reason why Tsunami Bomb has the type of following that they do, is because they never did the goofy shit that Blink 182, MXPX, NOFX, or other Warped Tour staples did. Tsunami Bomb never had a shtick. To sum this band up in one sentence, they are a Warped Tour band with serious punk rock tones, and a melodic female lead singer. This is without question one of my favorite bands of all time, and I am very fortunate to say that I saw them live, on their final tour, before they called it quits.
If you care to listen to a present day incarnation of Tsunami Bomb, Emily Whitehurst now fronts a band called The Action Design, which includes the old bass player Matt. Nothington is another spin-off band, but overall shares very little similarities to the former. The Action Design seems to be the next logical step for a Tsunami Bomb listener, but be advised that it is more pop, less punk rock, and may not tantalize the way that the original conception does. Here we’ll even make it easy for you, listen here.