Take a look at the video for “Preacher Man,” and you might recognize brothers Ross and Rocky Lynch if you either have a past of fawning over their old band R5, or you’ve already checked out My Friend Dahmer, in which Ross plays the Milwaukee cannibal himself. And for our purposes, both of those interests meet in a neat little Venn diagram to form the brothers’ new project The Driver Era.
On March 1, the R5 Facebook page saw a major makeover, purging all signs of life of the old group and transforming it into a platform for the two Lynch brothers’ new band, sending plenty of fans into a frenzy in the comments section with every new post. But after the pair worked on producing R5’s latest album together, 2017’s New Addictions, this new chapter shouldn’t come as a total surprise to anyone.
“It feels good to do something new after so many years in this industry,” Rocky tells Vanyaland. “New Addictions definitely played a major part in all of this but it was time to branch out and create new projects. Going into this project we knew it would be something very unexpected for a lot of people around the world, but I think most of our fans knew this was going to happen sooner or later. For me, life is all about progression, and that’s what TDE is.”
“Preacher Man” takes the lead at the duo’s first endeavor, a piano-driven pop-rock plea for salvation on the vice-filled West Coast.
Filmed in East Hollywood, the group selected a retired motel chock full of old water beds for the location of the video. Brimming with neon and nightlife, the brothers had initially aimed for a Batman-inspired cut (“we were hoping for a Heath Ledger cop car Joker scene but it didn’t end up happening”), but even without it, the colorful insanity seeps through.
“We’re starting a record label, Ross is filming a good amount of the year, I’m producing for other artists. TDE is one of the many ventures we plan to take this year,” Rocky explains. “Ross and I are very future-conscious while still admiring the past. And the name The Driver Era speaks exactly of those two opposite lifetimes. The Driver Era couldn’t be more present than now.”