Geographer (band)

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OriginSan Francisco, California, United States
GenresIndie rock, dream pop, electronic rock
Years active2007–present
LabelsRoll Call, Modern Art, Tricycle, Geographer Music
Associated actsSt. Vincent
MembersMike Deni
Past membersNathan Blaz
Brian Ostreicher

Geographer is the moniker for Mike Deni's American synth pop/indie rock band based in San Francisco, California.

Formed in 2007, by Deni[1] who has described his sound as being "soulful music from outer space" using analog, electronic and acoustic elements to craft dense layers and unique sound textures.[2]

As Geographer, Deni has released three full-length albums, Innocent Ghosts in 2008, Myth in 2012, and Ghost Modern in 2015; along with two (EPs), Animal Shapes in 2010, Endless Motion in 2015; a 7" single, Kites in 2009.


Deni relocated to San Francisco from New Jersey to escape strife within his family, and after finding a synthesizer on the street, he began to channel his experiences into the songs that would become Innocent Ghosts.[3] He began playing his songs locally in San Francisco at open mic nights—most notably The Hotel Utah, where he met cellist Nathan Blaz and drummer Brian Ostreicher.[4] Blaz and Ostreicher originally met while attending the Berklee College of Music, in Boston, Massachusetts, before moving to San Francisco. After being introduced to Deni at an open-mic night by mutual friend Kacey Johansing, the two would join Deni's live band.[5]

On August 17, 2008, Deni released Innocent Ghosts independently and the band began playing around the San Francisco Bay Area. The release garnered local and national attention with Spin magazine voting the band "[o]ne of the three undiscovered bands you need to hear now".[6][7]

He then signed with local Bay Area label Tricycle Records, and in December 2009, released a 7" single for the song "Kites" with a cover of the English rock band New Order's "Age of Consent" as the B-side.[8]

In 2010, he followed up the single with the release of the six-song EP Animal Shapes. The digital-download version of the record also contained two bonus remixes of the songs "Kites" and "Paris" by fellow Bay Area artists Wallpaper and The Limousines.[9] The album received favorable reviews, landing the band a "Best of" award by the SF Weekly.[10] November 2010 marked the first major tour for the band, supporting Stars on dates across the United States beginning in the Bay Area and ending in Buffalo, NY.[11]

In March 2011, the band signed with Modern Art Records, based in New York City, New York.[12]

In December 2011, Paste magazine released the single "Life of Crime" from forthcoming full-length album Myth, to be released by Modern Art Records.[13]

On February 28, 2012, Deni released Myth. In March of the same year, the band embarked on a five-week U.S. tour with labelmate indie-pop band Miniature Tigers.[14] On August 11, 2012, the band played a set on the Twin Peaks Stage at the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival, in San Francisco, the largest audience for which the band had thus far performed.[15] The set featured new songs "Life of Crime," "Lover's Game" and "Kites".[16][17]

In September 2012, the band announced that it would head out on a 21-date U.S. tour with indie-rock band Freelance Whales. The tour began October 4 at Lincoln Hall in Chicago, Illinois, and ended November 3 at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston.[18]

The band embarked on their first headlining tour of the western United States in 2013 with the band On An On. The tour began January 12 at Doug Fir Lounge in Portland, OR, and ended February 1 at The Echo in Los Angeles, CA.[19] The tour was a success for the band, selling out venues across the U.S. including their homecoming show at the historic Fillmore on January 31.[20] The band continued touring throughout 2013 in the U.S. and Canada with support from GRMLN and Royal Bangs.

The band announced on its website in March 2014 that they would be supporting Tokyo Police Club on their North American tour.[21] On January 20, 2015 Paste magazine premiered the single "I'm Ready" and announced his forthcoming full-length LP 'Ghost Modern' to be released in March 2015.[22] Prior to the release of 'Ghost Modern', the band headlined a sold-out show at the Fox Theater in Oakland, CA as part of the Noise Pop Festival. The show debuted new songs including "Need" and "I'm Ready" which would appear on the upcoming full-length album.[23]

Ghost Modern, Deni's 3rd full-length album was released on March 23 through Roll Call Records. The album featured the previously released single "I'm Ready" as well as recently released singles "Need" and "The Guest". Prior to the release of Ghost Modern, Blaz and Osteicher stepped down as the touring band pursue other projects that prevented them from maintaining the band's rigorous touring schedule.[24] Deni then recruited cellist Joyce Lee, guitarist and bass player Duncan Nielsen and drummer Cody Rhodes as his touring band, headlining shows throughout the United States and SXSW.[25]

Deni released a cover of Paul Simon's "I Know What I Know" through Billboard on October 26, 2015, announcing the release of the upcoming covers EP 'Endless Motion' which features additional covers of Kate Bush's "Cloudbusting", New Order's Age of Consent, Felix da Housecat's Ready 2 Wear and Arthur Russell's This Is How We Walk On The Moon.[26]

On December 16, 2016 Deni independently released a new Geographer single for the track "I Want It All"[27]


In live performances, Deni is known to sample and loop his vocals, saxophone, and synthesizers using an Akai MIDI controller. During performances, the cellist uses an NS Designs electric cello, often combined with effects pedals to create unique sounds.[28]

Song usage[edit]


Full-length albums[edit]

  • Innocent Ghosts (2008) Geographer Music
  • Myth (2012), Modern Art Records
  • Ghost Modern (2015), Roll Call Records

Extended-play albums[edit]

  • Animal Shapes (2010) Tricycle Records
  • Endless Motion: Vol. 1 (2015) Roll Call Records
  • Alone Time (2018)
  • New Jersey (2019)


  • "Kites" 7" (2010)
  • "Life of Crime" (2012)
  • "Lover's Game" (2012)
  • "I'm Ready" (2015)
  • "Need" (2015)
  • "The Guest" (2015)
  • "I Want It All" (2016)
  • "Read My Mind" (2017)
  • "So Low" (2017)
  • "Summer of my Discontentment" (2019)
  • "Love is Wasted in the Dark" (2019)


  • Waters - "Got To My Head" (2014)[42]
  • Vacationer - "Good As New" (2013)[43]
  • Blondefire - "Where The Kids Are" (2013)[44]
  • Bogan Via - "Kanye" (2013)[45]
  • Rubblebucket - "Oversaturated" (2012)[46]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mahnty, Shannon (8 May 2011). "Geographer: The band maps out their future". Don't Panic. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  2. ^ Kahn, Jennifer (20 August 2010). "Geographer – Animal Shapes – What's So Good?". IndieShuffle. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
  3. ^ Kish, Molly. "Geographer Interview: Noise complaints, reclaimed synths and courtesy cookies". Show Bams. Retrieved 4 October 2012.
  4. ^ Johnson-Igra, David. "Interview with Geographer: Q&A with Michael Deni". SFCritic. Retrieved 20 August 2009.
  5. ^ Kuo, Fenny. "Video: Geographer Interview". The Bay Bridged. Retrieved 19 April 2010.
  6. ^ Gaston, Peter. "Three Undoscovered Bands You Need To Hear Now". Spin. Retrieved 14 October 2008.
  7. ^ "CD of the Month: Geographer – Innocent Ghosts". The Deli Magazine. Retrieved 14 August 2008.
  8. ^ "Listen: "Age Of Consent" by Geographer (New Order Cover) - Indie Music Filter". Indie Music Filter. 8 December 2015. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  9. ^ Gillespie, Blake. "Geographer, Kites". Impose Magazine. Retrieved 27 August 2010.
  10. ^ Staff (n.d.). "Best Local Version of Radiohead – 2010 – Geographer". SF Weekly. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
  11. ^ Van Houten, Ben November (8 November 2010). "Geographer tours the US with Stars". The Bay Bridged - San Francisco Bay Area Indie Music. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  12. ^ [failed verification]Staff (undated). "Geographer" Archived 22 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine. Modern Art Records. Retrieved February 18, 2013.
  13. ^ Alwahab, Clint. "Song Premiere: Geographer – 'Life of Crime'". Paste. Retrieved 20 December 2011.
  14. ^ Staff (January 18, 2012). "Consequence of Sound presents The Modern Art Tour".
  15. ^ Sankin, Aaron (7 August 2012). "Geographer's Mike Deni Talks Long Walks in Noe Valley, The Agony of Open Mic Nights and the Novel He Wrote About Lance Bass". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 18 February 2013. 'We've done smaller stuff like [Live 105's] BFD, but OSL is going to be the biggest festival we've ever played.'
  16. ^ Sankin, Aaron (7 August 2012). "Geographer's Mike Deni Talks Long Walks in Noe Valley, The Agony of Open Mic Nights and the Novel He Wrote About Lance Bass". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
  17. ^ Zimmerman, Peter (12 August 2012). "Show Review: Outside Lands – Day Two: Saturday, August 11, 2012". Glide Magazine. Retrieved 18 August 2012.
  18. ^ . Retrieved 17 October 2012. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  19. ^ . Retrieved 19 December 2012. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ Weekly, SF. "Geographer Comes Home to the Fillmore, 1/31/13". SF Weekly. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  21. ^ "ON TOUR WITH TOKYO POLICE CLUB". Geographer. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  22. ^ Staff (January 20, 2015). "Song Premiere: Geographer - "I'm Ready"".
  23. ^ Groth, Gabriela. "San Francisco's Geographer enthralls at the Fox Theater". Stanford Daily. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  24. ^ Retrieved 8 April 2015. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  25. ^ Staff (April 8, 2015). [1].
  26. ^ Staff (October 26, 2015). "Geographer Announces New Covers EP, Debuts Paul Simon Cover: Exclusive Premiere".
  27. ^ "New Track - I Want It All". Geographer. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  28. ^ Staff (October 15, 2011). "Live Blogging Treasure Island Music Festival 2011: Day 1". Retrieved February 18, 2013.
  29. ^ Culturetainment (15 August 2009), "New York, I Love You" - Official Trailer [HD HQ], retrieved 18 June 2016
  30. ^ Hockley-Smith, Smith (7 May 2010). "G-Side F[eaturing]. Geographer and Jhi Ali, "Impossible" MP3". The Fader. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
  31. ^ "MTV Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows | MTV". MTV. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  32. ^ "MTV Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows | MTV". MTV. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  33. ^ "MTV Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows | MTV". MTV. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  34. ^ PixGetsBetter (22 November 2010), "It Gets Better" — Love, Pixar, retrieved 18 June 2016
  35. ^ "Awkward. | Season 5 Episodes (TV Series) | MTV". MTV. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  36. ^ buuteeq (17 January 2012), Hotel Website Design - buuteeq DMS - Hotel Website Design, retrieved 18 June 2016
  37. ^ "iPad mini 4 - Apple".
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^ thevalo brand (29 January 2013). "Valo 4Life Part 12 Homies Montage" – via YouTube.
  41. ^ SlowMotionSoundzTV (6 March 2013). "S.T. 2 Lettaz - 11 - BLINDERZ" – via YouTube.
  42. ^ Shane, Jason (1 May 2014). "Geographer remixes WATERS' "Got To My Head"".
  43. ^ "Good As New" Retrieved March 16, 2013.
  44. ^ "Where The Kids Are" Retrieved March 16, 2013.
  45. ^ "Kanye" Retrieved March 16, 2013
  46. ^ "Oversaturated" Retrieved March 16, 2013

External links[edit]