Depending upon preferences, people will argue that certain periods of music are better than all of the rest. For Brandon Smith, singer and songwriter of the Brandon Smith Band, the era that most resonates with him is the 1990s. Friday night is a big night for him, as his band opens for one of his favorite ’90s acts, Sponge, at the Boneyard Bar & Grill in Atlantic City 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11.
“Sponge was a pretty big influence of mine,” Smith says, adding, “This is a huge deal for us.”
While Smith has performed since he was 10 years old and spends his days as the head sound engineer for Congress Hall in Cape May, he doesn’t do a lot of shows.
“We don’t play out very often, about three or four times a year,” Smith says.
Smith got the call asking the Brandon Smith Band to perform as one of the opening acts for Sponge from Stephen Weiss of NorStep Productions.
“I got the call and said yes,” Smith says, laughing, “I didn’t even talk to the band about it.”
The Brandon Smith Band is known for their original music. And while they occasionally do a cover, most notably the Sponge song “Molly (16 Candles Down the Drain),” their upcoming show will feature all originals.
“We’ve been described as a mixture of Third Eye Blind and Blink 182,” Smith says of the band’s ’90s-inspired alternative punk sound.
And while their sound may be inspired by other musicians and bands — Everclear, Van Morrison, the Descendents, Matchbox Twenty, the Replacements and, of course, Sponge — their lyrics are inspired by something else altogether.
The band’s debut album “Honey, I’m Homeless,” which was self-released in 2014, is partly an homage to Smith’s life after a house fire that left him homeless, complete with cover art that depicts Smith’s former home on fire.
“I lost most of my equipment, guitars, amps,” Smith explains, “Everything that wasn’t in my car.”
And while an upcoming album, tentatively scheduled for a late 2017 release, will feature more aggressive sounds, “Honey, I’m Homeless” is actually fun and somewhat upbeat.
“The writing is from experience,” Smith says. “It’s about the fire concept, but also about moving on to a new thing.”