When Nick Aponte, AKA Bed Scene, chatted with New Times last April, the Berklee College of Music grad spoke about his struggle to connect musically with Miami, his hometown. His connection to the eclectic music scene in Boston had been more organic, he said.
After the interview, he says now, he began to think differently about just how much the 305's creatives had influenced his sound. Miami's diverse musical aesthetic is difficult to pin down or categorize, but Aponte says he realized his music had been influenced most by the people he'd met on the music scene in the Magic City rather than by a particular sound.
One of those people is Arminio Rivero, AKA Crocodile Deathspin, of the band SunGhosts. He directed the video for "Day in a Dream," the lead single on Aponte's debut EP, Bed Scene.
The song is a harmonic blend of sun-kissed psychedelia, like a breezy day spent tripping on acid at the beach. "I think I've gotten more in tune with that [sound] since I moved back down from the Northeast," Aponte says. "I remember when I was living in Massachusetts, in Boston, I was more in tune with a darker aesthetic. When I started Bed Scene... I kind of wanted to make it a lot more colorful."
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"Day in a Dream" sounds more like a Sub Pop Records creation than a product of Miami, and indeed the EP was mastered by engineer T.W. Walsh, who has mastered records by Sub Pop vets the Shins, as well as Foxygen, Sufjan Stevens, and other students of layered, reverb-laden '60s psychedelia.
"I've always been super into psychedelic music," Aponte says, "that sort of jangled guitar sound from the '60s to '80s. Especially that Mellotron sort of keyboard flute sound... I've always kind of wanted to re-create something like that, but in my own way."
The Mellotron was used in many classic '60s recordings, none more famous than the Beatles' "Strawberry Fields Forever." That psychedelic aesthetic is front and center in the video for "Day in a Dream," which is colored with art deco hues of pink, teal, and pale blue. Aponte and Rivero followed a loose concept for the video, but as it took shape, they began chasing the idea of blending memories with the present. "I uncovered my dad's old VHS tapes that we took in the '90s. Towards the end of the video, there's a little clip of me as a little kid."
Though Bed Scene is Aponte's latest project, he works on music full-time at a commercial music house where he composes jingles for advertisements. Many of the songs on the EP Bed Scene began in this form and later transformed into full-fledged songs. "Working in this field, you’re forced to be creative all the time," Aponte says. "You have to make songs or music relatively quickly." Music made for advertisements also needs to be undeniably catchy, and though the songs on Bed Scene won't be playing on any ad campaigns, they'll be replaying in your mind all day.