Summer Salt Returns to Texas for Its First Headlining Tour

Andrew Reiner
Since 2013, Summer Salt has played various shows in its home state of Texas and toured across the country with bands such as The Walters and Turnover. Next month, the Austin-based coral reef rock band will return to Dallas for its headlining tour.

The first show of the tour will be July 13 at Club Dada with Hot Flash Heat Wave and daphne tunes.

“I think it’s really cool. I actually like that it’s in Dallas because its where we’re from,” says vocalist and guitarist Matt Terry. “It’s always nice to play in Dallas early on because it sends good vibes into our journey.”

Summer Salt is a band of pals in pineapple shirts and heart-shaped sunglasses. It's influenced by bossa nova and oldies, with feel-good EPs perfect for chilling by the pool. The original trio of Terry, drummer Eugene Chung and bassist Phil Baier grew up in Dallas and formed in high school before moving to Austin in 2013. MJ Tirabassi from The Walters joined the band this year on vocals and guitar.

“We want to make music that feels good and is kind of happy, but also a way for us to express our goofy lives,” Terry says.

After Baier moved to Austin to attend the University of Texas, the rest of the band followed to continue playing music in a city that would be provide more opportunities to play shows.

“We just saw how much music was going on there that we believed it would be a good fit,” Terry says. “That and how close it is to home.”

“We just saw how much music was going on there [in Austin] that we believed it would be a good fit." – Matt Terry

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Terry and Baier, who grew up listening to their parents’ favorite oldies, and Chung, a member of an Austin hip-hop collective called Knifework, each brought his own style and inspirations to create a unique sound, but they also shared a love for Brazilian tracks.

Summer Salt’s music was also inspired by Little Joy, a Brazilian/American rock band formed by Rodrigo Amarante from Los Hermanos, Fabrizio Moretti from The Strokes and Binki Shapiro, and other Brazilian artists featured in Devendra Banhart’s compilation album.

“This is what we were trying to make because it’s just like a collective of everything we thought was cool,” Terry says about Little Joy. “It has that perfect combination of that oldies rock 'n’ roll … harmonies … and loaded with melodies.”

Summer Salt’s EPs include Driving to Hawaii, Going Native and So Polite. Its tunes are enriched with melodies, bouncy bass lines, breezy rhythms and Terry’s angelic voice. The band is a soul-searching adventure by the seaside, a splash of nostalgia and a relaxing road trip and that makes you question if it's from the coast rather than Texas.

The band was recently verified on Instagram and has been gaining more listeners on Spotify, according to Summer Salt’s Instagram page. It's working on releasing a full-length album, Happy Camper, this year.

“It very much resembles what we did in Driving to Hawaii, where we did a lot of vocal harmonies, a lot of extra guitar parts and layers,” Terry says.