The Mark Sexton Band, “Push On Through”
If Artown gets its way, the Lear Theater in Reno’s Riverside district someday will be renovated and reopened as a music venue. But the Mark Sexton Band couldn’t wait.
The Reno rock and soul group and the Reno Sessions production team used the venerable former church to record the video “Push On Through.”
Challenges in the making of “Push On Through” were ambient acoustics, no electricity (generators were kept outside with the doors closed) and cold conditions. All three videos were shot on Dec. 14, 2014. The musicians’ steamy breath can be seen in some of the shots and Sexton’s red nose needed to color corrected during the video’s edit.
The audio was used from the song’s third take.
“We knew that was the one,” Sexton said. “We did about five takes to get different camera angles.”
Sexton said the old building was “spooky.” He said he walked in the dark into a some mannequins Artown is storing for another project.
The Lear has been closed since 2002. It was designed by Paul Revere Williams, who in 1923 became the first African-American member of the American Institute of Architects. It is controlled by Artown, a Reno arts and culture advocate and organization.
“I thought making a video there would be a really cool experience,” Sexton said. “I thought I could ask if we could go do it but that it probably was not going to happen.”
Sexton’s emails to Artown, the city and others, however, received the same reply: “Everyone said, ‘Yes,’ ” Sexton said.
Guitarist-singer Sexton, drummer Dan Weiss and bass player Alex Korostinsky, the founding members of the band in 2006, and keyboardist Ryan Taylor, who joined MSB last spring, perform the uptempo R&B song, “Push On Through.” That tune is indicative of what Sexton plans for a new album.
Admiring the concept behind “Thriller” by Michael Jackson, “We want every song to be single-worthy,” Sexton said.
MSB has two EPs, 2010’s “Listen Out” and 2013’s “Young and Naïve.”
The 10 to 11 songs the band is working out have “a lot more grit with electric guitars and the songwriting is simplified and hits home a little more. They are raw, honest songs.”
“We are in the preproduction phase,” Sexton said. “We have done a tireless amount of demos, three or four for each song. It’s like an essay that you keep reworking. You have a hard time turning it in if you really want to get an ‘A.’ ”
Video directors Ford Corl and David Ware and audio engineer Shawn Sariti produced Sexton’s previous video, “Drunk Off Your Love,” which earned Reno Sessions an Emmy Award, Sexton said.
Related story: Keeping up with Alex Korostinsky: LINK