The Prom crafts emotive, sad piano pop that combines the lush, bittersweet sound of mid-70s Elton John with the eerie, cracked balladry of the Black Heart Procession and the off-kilter grooves of Grandaddy.
The group's roots lie in Omaha, Nebraska where vocalist and pianist James Mendenhall and bassist David Broecker grew up playing in the city's burgeoning indie rock scene. Mendenhall moved to Seattle in 1995 for art school, and in 1999, Broecker joined his old friend to form a new band. Mendenhall convinced studio engineer and schoolmate Joel Brown to be the drummer, and the Prom was born.
The Prom's low-fi debut, In This Way They Found Me, was released on Portland, Oregon's Panther Fact Records in 2000. Afterwards, the band began playing regional shows and found a fan in Death Cab For Cutie's Chris Walla, who produced the Prom's first Barsuk release, the 3-song EP Saloon Song.
In 2001, after playing regular West Coast shows with Rainer Maria, Gorky's Zygotic Mynci and old friends Bright Eyes, the Prom embarked on a national tour with Death Cab. The trio's sophomore record, Under the Same Stars followed in 2002, with a polished, fully-realized sound and a set of sparkling songs perfect for gazing skyward. ~ Charles Spano