Had it not been for organizers of the Asbury Park Surf Music Festival, members of the Great White Caps' would be spending their summer vacation apart.
Caps guitarist Jesse "Warchild" Braun said the group was contacted last year about reforming for a spot on the festival. Given the lead time, its members -- who have only performed together once since disbanding in 2014 -- decided to dig out their swim trunks and lather on the suntan lotion for another run of dates.
"We figured we might as well do more (gigs), so we booked a string of shows around it," Braun said during a Aug. 19 interview.
Their reunion trek, which starts tonight, will first take them to the Brooklyn Bowl in New York, where they will perform during a screening of the 1991 cult action flick Point Break. The quartet will return to their hometown of Bethlehem the following night to headline their old stomping grounds, the Funhouse. The Funhouse gig will include an opening set by the band Fog Cult.
"The Funhouse is the one I think we're all looking forward to," Braun said. "It's where it started; that's where everything we do starts. It's like home. They get a little crazier than the normal shows."
The tour will continue Saturday with a set during the Asbury Park Surf Music Festival and wrap up Sunday when they bring their "Point Break Comes Alive!" show to the rooftop of The Asbury Hotel.
"Asbury Park is awesome, it's a great place to be. The festival is on the beach, so playing on the beach in the summer is going to be a blast," Braun said..
Despite the amount of time away from the music, Braun -- who plays drums for Talking Heads tribute band Start Making Sense -- said he was surprised how natural the songs came back to him. (Great White Caps drummer Jon Braun is also a member of Start Making Sense.)
"(It's easy) to forget that we played 150, 200 nights a year, for three years straight; they're all in my head," he said. "Once I sat down and started playing they all came right back out... They're just really fun songs to play. It was a nice surprise they're all still muscle memory."
Braun said surf music is not so much technicality or flash, but rather capturing the right feel. "It's like you're riding a wave and getting that feel is the challenge," he said.
During their tenure together, the Great White Caps released two full-length albums and were a popular draw in the Lehigh Valley. (Front-man Ian "Montag the Magnificent" Hansson relocated to Texas following the group's split.)
In 2011, the band -- whose lineup is rounded out by bassist Nick "Sylvester Seaweed" Pokrivchak -- released the single, "I'm Gonna Get Drunk for Christmas." That same year, the group opened for influential surf rock band The Ventures at Musikfest Cafe in Bethlehem.