School of hard rock

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Local high school band produces full-length album

By Ramsey Scott

For a group of high school students, the road to rock stardom starts in Littleton. 

Divide Zero, winner of the 2013 Foothills Park and Rec Battle of the Bands, is promoting its first full-length album, “Reflections.” The year-long project, which the band finished late last year, has been a life-altering experience for the pop-punk quartet of high-schoolers.

“It’s surreal,” said singer/bassist Ty Lord, 17, a student at Littleton High School. “It’s something that you’re not expecting to happen, but when it does, it feels like you’ve accomplished something. You’re the king of the mountain for that one time.”

In the two years the band has been together after meeting at Band Dynamics, a music school that prepares students for the music business, the quartet has played throughout the metro area while finding time to record three separate releases, including “Reflections.” 

It’s a prodigious amount of work, considering the four have balanced their passion for music with schoolwork. 

But for the band —Lord; drummer Johan Lofas, 17, a Littleton High student; guitarist Wyatt Tafoya, 16, a student at Alameda International High; and singer/guitarist Tyler Talbert, 18, a Dakota Ridge student — the past two years have confirmed that they’ve found their true calling.

“I can never see myself working in an office. I could never achieve the same feeling I get on stage,” Tafoya said. “Knowing that you created something and you’re giving back to people and people are actually liking it, playing on stage and watching people like and participate in the music — it’s amazing.”

Lofas said: “Crowd participation and crowd involvement and how they’re feeling the music is everything to me. It makes me so happy when the music I play is felt by people that come to our shows and listen to our CD.”

“Reflections” captures the band members’ angst and their desire for fun, a combination familiar to anyone who survived high school. The four, who referred to themselves as the “weird” kids at school, said music has always been a source of solace.

“Ty and I were definitely the misfit kids at my school. We had a different mind-set than everyone else. We weren’t necessarily popular,” Tafoya said. “That’s where we really found ourselves and music. I found myself a lot through punk rock.”

Lord and Talbert are the chief songwriters. Lord said he’s found peace by writing about events like his cousin’s death from a methamphetamine addiction and by connecting with audience members who face their own struggles.  

“I had someone come up after a show and tell me one of my songs saved him. Both of his parent had just died, and he felt the emotional connection I was writing about,“ Lord said. “When someone comes up to you and says, ‘If I didn’t have that song, tomorrow wouldn’t be a good day,’ it makes everything for me.”

“I feel like music is something everyone can grasp on to,” Talbert said. “No matter where you are or what music you listen to, you know that there’s someone else going through the same thing, writing the same music you want to write.

“That’s something all kids and adults can grab on to — that there’s someone else out there.” 

The four continue to work on new music, and have dreams of making it big. Their biggest concern is playing lots of shows and getting their CD into as many hands as possible. 

To listen to “Reflections” or check out where the band will be playing next, visit www.dividezeroofficial.com.

Contact Ramsey Scott at ramsey@evergreenco.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 22, and follow him on Twitter @RamseyColumbine. Check www.columbinecourier.com for updates.