Robert Schwartzman has returned to making and performing music as Rooney, the Cali indie band that firmly broke into pop culture consciousness 13 years ago with an appearance on Fox’s pulpy teen drama, The OC. As a result, Schwartzman and the gang had to humbly shrug off heartthrob status, plugging away at making three albums of catchy guitar-driven power pop between 2003 and 2011. Afterwards, the band entered a hibernation of indeterminate length, with Schwartzman continuing on his own journey, releasing two solo albums, a music app, and working on his directorial film debut, Dreamland.
Now, after a six year hiatus, Schwartzman is back with his own label, new bandmates, and a fourth Rooney album, Washed Away, which was written and produced entirely by the frontman. “Rooney took on new life as I was making this record, sort of day by day,” says Schwartzman.
[springboard type=”video” id=”1629995″ player=”cr057″ width=”914″ height=”514″ ] Schwartzman on the eve of Rooney’s album release show at Downtown L.A.’s Teragram Ballroom to discuss the evolution of the new record, the making of the new single, and the launch of The Welcome Home Tour.
The album is reminiscent of the melodic rock and roll we’ve come to expect from the band, but with additional layers of verve and maturity. The first single, “My Heart Beats 4 U”, is a great example of the band’s modest departure from the past – a loud, adrenaline-inducing anthem perfect for stadium sing-alongs.
Influences run the gamut of great 90s indie sounds, from Built To Spill to Supergrass to Weezer. “These iconic indie rock leaning bands…that’s the stuff i grew up listening too,” says Schwartzman. “When I started Rooney, that’s what I was listening to. So I wanted to get back to the roots, to the heart of what Rooney was originally.”
For more on the resurrection of Rooney, see video above!!