Drift Lifted
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Drift Lifted

Bay City, Michigan, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Bay City, Michigan, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Psychedelic



The best kept secret in music


"Mp3 @ 3pm"

Blues is a genre that rarely gets noticed in modern times simply because people can’t play it right. Drift Lifted, from Bay City, Mich., is an exception. The band readies for the release of its debut album this year and has released single “The Wanderer.” Prepare yourself; this song oozes with soul and rhythm and gets seriously heavy. The psychedelic aspect of the band brings to mind artists like Zeppelin and Hendrix, but you can tell Drift Lifted has its own thing going on. We are proud to premiere the track today on magnetmagazine.com. - Magnet Magazine

"Drift Lifted moves ahead after Chesaning Showboat Battle of the Bands"

SAGINAW, MI – For Drift Lifted, winning the Chesaning Showboat’s Battle of the Bands on July 13 was “kind of a big thing,” said guitarist Joe Beni, who with Austin Woods, Cody Waterman, Dave Garno and Spencer Koppi started the Saginaw band in May 2012.

“We had 150 people at the front of the stage when we played,” Beni said. “The other bands were really great, and our buddies, the Mud Suns, were from Chesaning. We thought they were going to take it.

“But people kept telling us, ‘You guys were awesome!’ Then we found out we won, and the crowd went crazy.”

It was a shining moment for the young band. Then, two days later, Showboat festival organizers canceled the week’s concerts, dashing Drift Lifted's chance to open July 18 for Theory of a Deadman and Puddle of Mudd as part of its prize package.

They’re also waiting to hear the status of the $1,000 cash prize that they needed to buy a spot on the Dirt Fest stage Saturday, Aug. 10, at the Birch Run Expo Center. Bands then receive tickets that they sell to get their money back.

But Drift Lifted, which won its first Battle of the Bands in April at The Crofoot in Pontiac, isn’t sitting idle. On Friday, July 19, they’ll compete against The Malcontent, Slight Case of Death and The Outlaws of Zen in the Altered Skin Revolution’s Battle of the Bands at Hamilton Street Pub, 308 S. Hamilton.

Headlining is The Kincaids; anyone showing a Chesaning Showboat ticket will receive $1 off the $5 cover for 21 and older and $8 for 18- to 20-year-olds.

The winner will go up against Distorted Waltz and Everyday Ghost and a wild card entry in the finals Friday, Aug. 16. The victor takes home $1,000 and recording time at Fire Hyena Studios, and all four finalists perform at the Altered Skin Revolution, held Friday and Saturday, Sept. 13 and 14.

Drift Lifted will celebrate its EP release Saturday, Sept. 7, at the pub.

“Cody and I have been best friends since we were in diapers,” Beni said, and they joined with Garno, and Woods and Koppi, who were playing in an acoustic band at the time. When they started to jam, “everything gelled,” Beni said.

He drew the name from his grandparents’ band, Driftwood, and the music from influences ranging from Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix to Muddy Waters and Howlin' Wolf. The result is a defining style like nothing anyone has heard before, and instead of chasing down shows, “people are contacting us,” he said, through its Facebook page and at driftlifted@gmail.com.

“We take this very seriously. I don’t know anything else I’d rather do with my life than make music," Beni said. "We put everything into what we do, and when we won that Battle of the Bands in Chesaning, it felt like things were really happening. Now we’re shifting gears and hoping that something good will come of it all.” - MLive.com

"Groovebox Studios Live Session"

Drift Lifted was given the opportunity to preform live at Groovebox Studios in Detroit's Russel Industrial Center. - Groovebox Studios


Still working on that hot first release.



Rock and roll is not dead. Perhaps, it is not fully alive either.

Perhaps, rock and roll is exactly where it was always meant to be - in the dark, haunting middle -  a purgatory of eerily enticing sounds and electric riffs. A place where your eardrums aren’t trapped, but they never want to leave.

The gritty, beer-caked bars. The graffiti’d bathrooms. The backstage rooms, dimly lit by the one or two remaining light bulbs surrounding the mirrors where megastars once put on their makeup. Where musicians sit on tattered, mismatched couches playing random chords amongst the smoke clouds and small talk.

Though rock may come alive on the stage, it is in these grungy hallways and back rooms where it breeds, fermenting that distinct sound that a true rock and roll lover can feel in their chest more so than hear with their ears.

Michigan up-and-comers Drift Lifted bring a psychedelic blues back to rock that has rarely been heard outside of such hallways in the past 40 years. Theirs is a raw, untamed rock music that pulls you in - mind, body and soul.

Rock and roll has always served as a sanctuary for the outcasts and sinners - those that choose to march against the grain of the upright society, filled with its moral corruptions. The tri-city based boys of Drift Lifted are right there marching, instruments in hand - their weapons of the “upcoming musical revolution.”

Raw emotion pulsates through their songs forming a rhythmic heartbeat in their chaotic melodies. The music bounces and swells - breathing - laying the foundation for their electro-psychedelic guitar riffs, jazz-inspired blues bass and impure vocals of lead singer, Austin Woods.

For the guys - Woods, vocals; Dave Garno, bass guitar; Joe Beni, guitar; Spencer Koppi, guitar and Cody Waterman, drums - their music is their release. It is what is left when they strip away everything that is fake and corruptible - their bare bones on display for their fans to connect with.

In fact, says Woods, most of the songs on their upcoming debut album, due out August 2015, focus on corruption of some sort.

“Blind Pig” is the album’s straight-up, down to the core blues song. A classic “bar fly” song, it describes worn out people in a worn out bar who are searching for hope. “Blind Pig” plays with levels throughout, getting quiet at times and chaotic at others. As blues-y as the lyrical concept, is Woods’ gruff voice over Garno’s hard-hitting riffs, forming a stable backbone for the song.

“You Just Want” is a compilation of all the members’ styles. Heavy bass lines, groove guitar and steady drum beats keep the rhythm, while Koppi’s guitar riffs go from psychedelic to southern blues. Woods’ lyrics focus on frustration. The message - being sick and tired of bullshit.

“Music is a way for me to express my true thoughts,” Woods said. “When I write down lyrics I mend them in such a way that everyone can build there own ideas about what the song is about. That's what art is, being able to take away your own thoughts from someone else's creation.”

It is difficult to picture such a keen sense of music and life coming from such young musicians - all under age 27. Yet, it simply shows how entrenched their lives are in the music of yesteryear - some of their biggest inspirations being MC5, Jimi Hendrix, and The Doors..

Drift Lifted has toured through much of Michigan and Ohio in their Dodge van, lovingly dubbed Roy Vogular, complete with an old couch and traveling basketball hoop. Life on the road can be interesting to say the least. As Garno describes it, “Pee bottles, sleep and cigarettes.”

On their road adventures, the boys think about what’s in store for their future. They hope to spark their own musical revolution, getting the fans back into the essence of the music and away from their phone screens.

“I hate how much people rely on technology,” Koppi said. “Nothing can ever be left in the moment. People have to take pics or videos instead of truly focusing. Everything has to be quick, simple, easy to grasp. No thinking involved.”

Drift Lifted also hopes to keep the music right where it was always meant to be - with the rock-hungry fans, happily caught in that forever quest for the next great song.

Band Members