Surge had its beginnings in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 2012 playing covers from artists such as Jimi Hendrix and The Strokes. Decked in suits and ties, the original members were Joan Torres on bass guitar, Gerson Orjuela on drums and founding member and songwriter Sergio J. Gonzalez Pagan. A year later, Gustavo Gastelum joined the project on guitars.
What began as a musical project eventually grew into something much bigger, and the complete ensemble began working on original material in 2013, playing for a variety of crowds at different music venues in the downtown San Juan area. Two years later, the group recorded and released its self-titled album, SURGE.
Sharing influences from the musical cultures of New Orleans and San Juan, it is difficult to box Surge into a specific genre, but the band describes itself as “an ethereal collage of moody indie-rock, folk, grunge, post-punk, and jazz.”
As of 2017, Surge consists exclusively of founder Sergio J. Gonzalez Pagan, who currently resides in New Orleans. “New Orleans culture and music community really shaped my sound,” Pagan says. “The amount of diverse music and the accessibility to it at any given time really influenced and pushed me to become a songwriter.”
Pagan studied music industry at Loyola University New Orleans from 2006 to 2010, two years before he started his musical project. But Pagan says he has always been drawn to the city, even as a child. “[New Orleans] is a place that felt in the same frequency as my native Puerto Rico,” he says. “Having said that, when I decided to play music, New Orleans was where I needed to be.”
Pagan (as Surge) has released his first single “Singularity,” aptly named as it is the first to feature him alone. “Singularity” was recorded at Play Back Studios, where it was engineered by Ramon Martinez and Carlos Velazquez. It was re-released last year through Lela June Records, an indie label based out of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Pagan cites the concept behind the single as black holes, or “how someone can become a chaotic force.”
“You become attracted, to want to explore to keep feeding this constant sense of discovery,” Pagan says, “but by the time it ends, you find yourself in the event horizon.”
Pagan says that what happens from there is unknown and unpredictable. Speaking of “Singularity,” he says he “wanted to paint an abstract picture of what I would imagine would be entering that void.”
A music video for “Singularity” is expected in February, but for now, you can check out the lyric video below, and follow Surge @whatissurge.