“Don’t set yourself up for rejection, this is going to be great. I know I got this motherfucker, this is going to be great” announces Muggy, lead bassist and vocalist for Connection Error before launching into their warm up song.
It’s a roaring sound from the Mission Viejo based band, Muggy’s busy bass playing and aggressive melodicism, Sam Slater’s cutting guitar lead and clean backup vocals, and the pounding force behind the drumset from Cayden Lee.
Connection Error, a band led by two Mission Viejo High School students as well as a Laguna Hills High School student was founded in July of 2020.
Drummer Cayden and bassist Muggy explain how the band started. Muggy explains, “Cayden and I met in 4th grade. We were best friends.” The two drifted apart and Muggy explains that he thought Cayden had eventually moved to Texas, where he’d been planning on moving for some time.
To both of their surprise, they met again in 8th grade through mutual friends. Muggy elaborates, “we really didn’t recognize each other at first. I knew he played drums and I played guitar, so we started playing together.”
As for Sam, she met Muggy through a simple conversation over social media. It started from a response to one of Muggy’s guitars he posted on his social media, eventually leading to the two joining up with Cayden and forming what is now Connection Error, originally called Existential Crisis Club, changing their name a few months after forming.
As for their music, they’d describe themselves as punk and grunge, but they definitely aren’t tied to that sound.
Muggy states, “What we are trying to do right now is define ourselves with our first album”. Muggy goes on to explain that they will then expand upon their sound with further releases and experiment in different directions.
As for musical heroes, each member has their own. Cayden is heavily influenced by Phil Elverum (of Microphones and Mount Eerie) for his songwriting, as well as Zach Hill (Death Grips and Hella) for his playing.
Muggy’s vocal performance is deeply influenced by Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day), a musical hero of his. He explains that from a young age, he’d attempted to replicate his sound which has helped shape his style today.
As for Sam, her uncle played a major role in her pursuit of music, particularly in her originally picking up the guitar. She also explains another reason for her interest in punk particularly. “There weren’t as many girls in the punk community, it made me want to pursue it more.”
Connection Error has been hard at work writing material. Cayden explains, “we have a bunch of rough drafts and two songs that we completed. I’d say as far as our upcoming EP, we have everything written.” Sam adds, “it’s honestly difficult being in a band while being a high school student in a global pandemic because it makes things unpredictable. It’s still definitely fun though.”
When writing, Muggy explains their process rather bluntly: “fuck around and find out. We’re taking a bunch of pieces that we thought were interesting and assembling them together.”
Muggy also explains his emotion to their music: “rage, I always turn to music when I’m pissed. When it comes to music, it’s to send a message to people that I sometimes hate.”
Sam adds, “When we are playing as a band, even though it could be stressful, it’s really cool to put all of our emotions down and it’s really helpful.”
As for goals for their band, Muggy admits, “I don’t really wanna become famous where we are playing large gigs… I like the interaction with the crowd. I don’t want to become famous to the point where we have a billboard of us. I just want enough money to live in an apartment.”
Cayden explains, “the goal of music for me is expressing yourself in a non-traditional, unusual way. If people don’t usually relate to the way you express yourself, if you put it out as music, there will be people that it will resonate with.”
At the end of practice, The band runs through one more of their tunes. It’s a cover of “Last Caress” by The Misfits.
The song starts with a sustained guitar chug from Sam with a loud shouting intro. The band comes in firing; Muggy enters with “I’ve got something to say, I killed a baby today!” Cayden’s drumming is aggressive, but tight. There’s a true connection between the musicians that can only be heard in person.
By encapsulating a gritty punk sound through their music and lyricism, Connection Error is surely a band to keep a watch for. Stay tuned for their new single and debut EP coming spring.