The Real Zebos
Gig Seeker Pro

The Real Zebos

Omaha, NE | Established. Jan 01, 2018

Omaha, NE
Established on Jan, 2018
Band Rock Indie




"The Waiting Room and The Real Zebos Host an LP Release Party"

State Disco and Garst were at The Waiting Room in Omaha, Nebraska, along with a multitude of friends who were all there to party and congratulate The Real Zebos on the release of their debut album, Strictly Platonic. It’s amazing how quickly this band has gotten to this stage of their career — especially when you consider their start. Who starts a band on Craigslist? I can’t even find a decent sofa on Craigslist, much less a bunch of fellas that I plan on being with nearly every day of the major part of my life. Connor Brandt and Jordan Gaul found each other on Craigslist, and after a 9 track demo album, Missed Connections, they went back to Craigslist to complete the rest of the band: Les Rahn on drums, Jake Strange on guitar and George Cooper on bass. In January of 2018, they played their first song. A year and half later, here we are at The Waiting Room being introduced to their full-length LP, Strictly Platonic. Named so with Craigslist in mind. Clever boys.

Getting things started was State Disco. I’m going to basically quote their Facebook page to describe who this band is, because there is no way I could do it on my own. They were conceived in a dream about an imagined European realm where people rave at government-sponsored dance parties. What they play is indietronic dance, but most importantly — and I can’t stress this enough — they are still a rock band. Cody Rathman (vocals, guitar, keys), Jay Nesmith (keys, vocals), Nate Fowler (drums) and Jared Bakewell (bass, vocals) are the individuals that make up the band, but there is nothing individual about them at all. This is a tight, all for one and one for all, band. They come on stage with a goal to entertain, and once they started playing it was obvious they would have no problem achieving that goal. “Going to Sleep is Giving Up” from 2018 is their debut record and is a must listen. I can’t say enough about Beautiful Monsters. Being an 80s freak, I can tell you it screams from that age and it’s a body mover with a perfect vocal track. I would not be surprised to discover that these guys were Joy Division fans. Hey, I have an idea, let’s do what bands hate we do. Let’s compare State Disco to another band. I’m gonna go with The Midnight. Great beats, floating keys, lengthy sustains and incredible lyrical ability. GO SEE THIS EXTREMELY WELL-POLISHED BAND!!

Up next was Roman Constantino, Casey Plucinski, Joe Murphy-Chavez and Cannon Dunwoody. Collectively, they are Garst. So why the name Garst? Where did it originate? What does it mean? And most importantly, what is its relationship to the band? I DON’T KNOW AND I DON’T CARE!! What I care about is can they play. And well, they can’t. They cannot play because they DESTROY!! These guys play like nobody is watching. If I could play and was good enough to be in a band, this is the kind of music I’d be playing. Distortion and pedal work. I’d be staring a hole through my shoes. Garst released Temet Nosce in 2018 which is Latin for ‘know thyself." Garst certainly does know themselves. They know who they are and what their style of music is, and make no apologies for either. And guess what? They don’t have to. By doing what they are doing, they are doing us all a service. Fletcher's Mystical Mind is just amazing. You would be hard pressed to find any song from any genre from any decade that rocks the way this one does. You wanna just punch something when you listen to it. It’s simply put, spot-on distortion. You can find these guys on Spotify, and I suggest you do.

About five minutes before The Real Zebos came out a chant began: “Zebos! Zebos! Zebos!” The room and the stage darkened and out walked The Real Zebos. Starting off with Nothin’ At All, the crowd immediately began to sing along with the band and didn’t stop until they were walking out the door; and even then, some were still singing. This band is skillful and clean, overflowing with talent and flair. For the first two acts, I was able to walk up to the stage to grab some photos. For this band, I had a much harder time. The audience wanted to be as close to the band as they could. Somewhere around the third or fourth song, a pair of humongous, air-filled dice were tossed into the crowd. About 30 seconds later, management had put an end to that by confiscating them. As the music continued, I could hear shout-outs from the crowd to the band. “I love you guys!” You guys are awesome!” “Jump down here!” “Let me dance with you!” This was a party and the boys on stage were in charge and doing an exceptional job. Let’s not forget we are all here to celebrate the album release of Strictly Platonic. On that album you will find Luck. There is a video for this song that is a play off the hit show Shark Tank. It’s a crafty video and fun to watch.

Each song on this LP is really well done. We can compare them to other indie pop bands, like Vampire Weekend. And that’s ok, as I honestly don’t think they mind, because at the same time they know they offer a little something different as well. They are playful and comedic without losing any of the seriousness of the music. You can of course listen to their new LP on Spotify and purchase it on their website. These guys are about to explode, and you will want to be one of the first to say “I knew them before they were famous.” - Go Venue Magazine

"Omaha band ‘The Real Zebos’ prepares to release first full-band LP"

In the past, fledgling rock artists hung calls for band member tryouts on bulletin boards at coffee shops or stapled them to telephone poles. Omaha indie rock band The Real Zebos’ members came together a little differently, with help from Craigslist.

The band’s two founding members, guitarist and vocalist Jordan Gaul and keyboardist and vocalist Connor Brandt, lived in the same University of Nebraska Omaha housing area in 2015. But they had no idea how close they were until they both looked to Craigslist to find other musicians with similar interests. Jordan went on Craigslist with the mission to make a band of some kind.

“After writing songs for a couple of years, we spent a lot of time trying to find bandmates that support all of these songs,” Gaul said. “After a couple years of sifting on Craigslist, we found the remaining three members that are here today.”

In December 2016, Gaul and Brandt released their first EP, “The Real EP,” which is a four-song album that showcases the duo’s indie rock sound in its early stages, with more to build on. The EP was entirely recorded in Gaul’s dorm room. Four months later, they released “Missed Connections,” a nine-song album also recorded in Gaul’s dorm room. But the album still didn’t have the full-band component Gaul and Brandt envisioned.

Patience was key for Gaul and Brandt, who tried to find new members numerous times, but to no avail.

“I can’t tell you how many emails I had with people that went back and forth that went absolutely nowhere,” Gaul said.

Brandt said he wouldn’t recommend using Craigslist to other musicians starting a band, but it ended up working out for them.

“There are so many weirdos and like 40-year-old idle bassists,” Brandt said. “It’s honestly kind of insane that [Gaul] didn’t attack me.”

Eventually, Craigslist led to Gaul and Brandt finding the other three members: drummer Les Rahn, guitarist Jake Strange and bassist George Cooper.

“Because I was getting such terrible responses, I put out a list of my favorite bands, and I think Jordan was very surprised to see that we had so many in common,” Brandt said. “The five of us, even though we vary a little bit, all have stuff in common.”

The Real Zebos bonded over popular indie acts like Vampire Weekend, MGMT and The Arctic Monkeys, and they even regularly cover The Arctic Monkeys’ song “R U Mine.”

Eventually forming into the five-piece band it is today in October 2017, The Real Zebos had solidified its first batch of live songs and played at local venues around Omaha, from bars to basements.

“We played a show at a house venue in a garage in early August,” Gaul said. “It was in the triples of degrees and for some reason someone smelled like s---.”

Though they’ve played a handful of strange shows, those moments have been part of the road to where the band is today.

The group plans to release singles on all streaming services throughout the year and go on tour this summer across the Midwest, with gigs in Denver, Kansas City and Ames, Iowa. And after years of self-recording, The Real Zebos is dropping “Strictly Platonic,” its first full-band, professionally recorded LP this summer. The album is produced by three-time Grammy-nominated producer Rick Carson, who co-owns Omaha’s Make Believe Studios. Though Brandt and Gaul are still the principal songwriters, the new LP will have input from all three new members.

“We try to make every song as different as you can and that reflects in our albums,” Brandt said. “We don’t want to limit ourselves to any sound.”

The Real Zebos’ next show is on Feb. 23 at Reverb Lounge in Omaha with Xaiiya and Garst. - The Daily Nebraskan

"Recap: Future Feats with The Real Zebos at Duffy’s Tavern 4.14.2018"

... The opener, an indie alternative band The Real Zebos, energized the crowd almost immediately. Their up-tempo rock mixed with the occasional organ and keyboard synths kept every song interesting, and covers of songs like MGMT’s “Electric Feel” sounded eerily similar yet uniquely original. And it didn’t matter whether they were playing their own music or covers, the vitality and presence from the group of five was infectious, and big instrumental breaks with the crowd clapping or cheering were the band’s best moments.

The Real Zebos have a growing following of fans and their solid performance at the jam-packed tavern showed they could be gaining a lot more if they keep playing to Lincoln and Omaha crowds. Look for this band when they play at 1867 on April 21... - KZUM


Superspooky (Single; October 2018)

Strictly Platonic (Album; June 2019)

Just Drive (Single; December 2019)



The Real Zebos are an indie pop/rock band who are trying to sound like everybody and nobody. With a wide array of influences, they work to make every song different from the last, though strong melodies and catchy hooks are always the top priority.

Band Members