An “ume” is a Japanese plum blossom that symbolizes devotion, perseverance, and hope. It is also the fitting namesake of an unrelenting Austin power-trio featuring Lauren Larson on guitar and vocals, Rachel Fuhrer on drums, and Eric Larson on bass. Their sound is that of passion, of rock emancipated from those “wimpier tendencies,” wild and honest. Lauren and Eric met at a skatepark and began making music together in high-school. Lauren was a 15 year old guitarist playing in her first punk band Twelve Blades – a politically charged hardcore band from a small Texas town. Years later Lauren and Eric formed a band named Ume (pronounced “ooo-may”) with longtime friend Jeff Barrera. Navigating between Lauren’s PhD pursuit and two distant states, they played a couple hundred shows, opened for bands like Arcade Fire, Polvo, Oneida, and The Fall, and began growing a fan-base that included the likes of Gang of Four’s Dave Allen and Joan Jett.

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2011 dawned and so did a new era for the band. Ume welcomed new powerhouse drummer Rachel Fuhrer, was named one of the top unsigned bands by Rolling Stone Magazine, and released their LP Phantoms on the Austin indie-label Modern Outsider. After logging tens of thousands of miles playing basement shows and dive bars, Ume finally found themselves on a festival stage playing next to such acts The Flaming Lips, TV on the Radio, and Wu-Tang. The band’s momentum and non-stop touring continued into 2012. The trio was hand-picked by Perry Farrell (he actually called the band’s cell phone) to open for Jane’s Addiction and Franz Ferdinand at their Lollapalooza After-Party at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago, IL. The band also made their European debut at the massive Rock en Seine Festival in Paris, France.

Ume reached their largest audience yet as they appeared on the 2012 Season Premiere of Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations – sharing their music and love of local food with Tony during his visit to Austin’s SXSW Music Festival. The rest of 2012 found the band playing Austin’s Fun Fun Fun Fest, opening for The Smashing Pumpkins, completing two tours with Helmet and The Toadies, and their most important project yet. This fall, Ume began recording a new album with Grammy-winning producer Adam Kasper (Queens of the Stone Age, Cat Power, Foo Fighters, Nirvana) at Robert Lang Studios in Seattle, WA. The record was funded with the help of fans through Kickstarter. With the support of a loyal grassroots fanbase, the band reached their Kickstarter goal in less that 24 hours. Ume wrapped up recording in January 2013 at Seattle’s Studio X…