San Jose’s sonic cure-all for the Y2K hangover that never materialized, Duster emerged from a
cloud of lonely bong rips to take indie rock to the moon, and beyond. Home recording accidents
and blown-out 2 AM studio experiments resulted in the band’s 1998 debut LP Stratosphere.
Quickly after the turn of the century, Duster went on an extended break. This hiatus lasted 18
years, until 2019 when Chicago-based archival record label Numero Group reissued all of
Duster's earlier material on the highly successful 4LP boxset, Capsule Losing Contact. The
band would also return with a new self-titled LP, also released in that same year.
This rejuvenation and reformation of the band helped grow its popularity, but it was the
pandemic and the millions of teen hours spent doom scrolling on Tik Tok that accelerated the
band’s reach. Just as Duster-mania was hitting its stride, the band released their fourth LP—
2022’s Together, via the Numero Group and soon after could be found on numerous headlining
tours, selling out venues all over the US. As of July 2023 “Inside Out” has been streamed 7.2B
times on Tik Tok, and picked up an additional 4.2B impressions across other DSPs.
Now in 2023, we find ourselves full circle at the 25th anniversary of the bands seminal debut
album, Stratosphere. Best listened to from inside the womb, Stratosphere simultaneously
capped off and reinvented the slow core’s first wave. A four-track dreamscape that will wake the
neighbors and then lull them back to sleep. Hazy, arpeggiated guitars layerover a deliberate
drummer with no real place to be, as semi-inaudible vocals warn of millennial malaise and
subtly encourage the listener to “rock out, rock out, rock out, rock out.”
This September, to celebrate its 25th trip around the sun, the NumeroGroup is releasing
Stratosphere in a foil-stamped, numbered edition on LP/CD/CASS. The LP edition will come
pressed on 180G vinyl and include a lyric sheet and poster. What’s a birthday without gifts?
Socks, totes, and zippo lighters celebrating Stratosphere’s iconic cover will accompany the
But wait, there’s more! On September 29, 2023, Duster’s Stratosphere will be sent to space, its
launch and descent captured in glorious 4K resolution for future generations to marvel over.