The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is pleased to partner with Microsoft Zune for Five Minutes with Fame, an exclusive video series on the Zune Marketplace featuring singers, songwriters and bands at the forefront of today's music. After a behind-the-scenes tour of the Museum, we sit down with artists to talk about their music, their road to success, inspirations, being on tour and of course, some of their favorite artists and artifacts highlighted in the Museum. This week's featured group is Neon Trees.
With influences that include Depeche Mode, Michael Jackson, Led Zeppelin and Bruce Springsteen, it's no surprise that Neon Trees deliver a hook-laden New Wave sound with a hard hitting rock and roll backbone. Lead vocalist and keyboardist Tyler Glenn and guitarist Chris Allen first started playing together as the Neon Trees in their native Southern California in 2005. The two friends eventually moved to Provo, Utah, to attend school, and there met drummer and vocalist Elaine Bradley and bassist Branden Campbell.
Rechristened as a quartet, Neon Trees found an immediate musical connection, churning out a string of inspired tunes that addressed longing, love lost and found and adolescent angst. “We’re all about songs which relate the human experience,” says Las Vegas native Campbell. “The emotion is very important to us. Our logo is a human heart with wings. We try to keep it real, but we’re not afraid to dream either, work hard and admit we want success.
“We approach the songs from a classic perspective,” adds Allen. “Even from the start, it was all about the music for us. We didn’t even talk, just practice.”
The band's synth-pop friendly sound caught the ear of the Killers, who invited Neon Trees to be the opener on select dates during their 2008 North American Tour. The band signed with Mercury, and their major-label debut, Habits, appeared in March 2010. The lead single "Animals" has been certified platinum, and the band has performed the song on a number of late night talk shows, including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Conan. "1983" and "Your Surrender" were the second and third singles, respectively, both catchy, danceable tracks. Neon Trees are currently on tour with Duran Duran.
Along with Microsoft's Zune Marketplace on PC and XBox Live, the only place you’ll be able to see these videos is right here each week on rockhall.com. Stay tuned for next week's Five Minutes with Fame with 3OH!3.