By Jim Schutze
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Alan Palomo's DJ set at Hailey's last weekend was a homecoming of sorts. Together with Jason Faries (aka Females), Palomo used to have a weekly gig at the club spinning electro tracks as It's What We Get. But other than making an appearance at that Denton-trotting We Shot JR party back in October, this weekend marked Palomo's first formal performance in Denton since he adopted the Vega moniker and moved to Austin in mid-August.
Palomo, of course, is the former frontman, and let's be honest, wunderkind and mastermind, behind the formation and termination of the Denton-based phenoms Ghosthustler. But what caused him to leave Ghosthustler, ultimately collapsing the electro-synth juggernaut? And what has he been up to since?
"I just felt like it was time to move on," Palomo says. "All of my ex-bandmates are incredibly talented guys, but there were just too many fundamental creative differences between us that kind of took us away from what Ghosthustler was intended to be." And with its dreamy, '80s-montage synth sounds, Palomo's first tracks as space-disco outfit Vega picked up right where Ghosthustler left off.
"Honestly, there's a lot of benefit to creating on your own," he says. "It tends to be more of a self-discovery process from production to the songwriting to the cultivating of a sound to having a tighter set of musical influences."
Other than DJ sets, Palomo's follow-up gig to his DJ set—a New Year's Eve show at Hailey's—is his first live performance anywhere since the final Ghosthustler gig at the Quick's Big Thing Awards show back in April. "I couldn't think of a better place to premiere the live show," he says. "Most of my close friends are from Denton, and Denton just feels more like my stomping grounds. Even though I don't live here now, I still feel like a part of the area's musical community."
Instead of the heavily synth-pop-influenced sets that Ghosthustler played, Palomo says the Vega performances come off more like dance sets.
Gazelles' Ronald Gierhart and Faries will accompany Palomo onstage. Together, they've spent the last week and a half practicing the "four or five songs" for the "relatively short set."
"Hopefully, there's gonna be a very fluid feel to the Vega sets because we'll be using interludes to blend the songs and let them flow together." And hopefully, in the future, there won't be long pauses between new material from Palomo and crew either. He promises his new single, "Well-Known Pleasures," will be available in early January. And in the coming year, he'll also release a five-song EP and two new remixes.
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