Weekly Feature #203b: Bryan Scary and the Shredding Tears

Bryan Scary and the Shredding Tears are frightening only in their unmatched energy and dynamics, both live and on record. The quintet’s recently debuted “Mad Valentines EP” showcases mastermind songwriting by Bryan Scary (Lead vocals, Keyboard) and his shredding tears, Mike Acreman (Vocals, Keyboard), David Ostrem (Vocals, Bass), Graham Norwood (Vocals, Guitar), and Paul Amorese (Drums). In six outstanding tracks, these Brooklynites pack in operatic vocals and dramatic delivery, and mix theatrical enthusiasm with glam and power-pop, creating a whimsical sound that is elaborate, entertaining, and borderline frantic. After fully sampling what the “Mad Valentines EP” accomplishes, it is hard to imagine the songs’ complexity recreated on stage, but Bryan Scary and the Shredding Tears erase any doubt and even outperform expectations. Choice tracks, “Andromeda’s Eyes,” “(It’s a) Gambler’s Wind,” and “Bye Bye Babylon” take listeners on a ride through “Scaryville” and showcase BSST’s top-notch compositions. - Read Meijin Bruttomesso's interview with Bryan here.


NYC Popfest begins: Elephant Parade and Dream Diary at Cake Shop

Now in its fourth year, New York City Popfest has highlighted numerous indie-pop bands from around the world and more importantly local. Since its inception it’s produced bands such as The Pains of Being Pure At Heart and The Drums who have now gone to international stardom. This year, the fest will highlight long time veterans and fresh new acts, including Deli's recent CD of the month The Secret History. The 4 day fest will start on Thursday May 20 with a show at Cake Shop involving two NYC acts that deserve attention, catchy The World Atlas (in the picture), that could be appropriately called NYC's own Belle and Sebastian, and Dream Diary, operating on similar acoustic and dreamy musical coordinates.


Deli CD of the month: Naked Hearts' "Mass Hysteria"

This is one of those bands that make boys and girls fall in love (with each other and with their music, of course). The Naked Hearts are a not-entirely-bass-less rock duo (live, the bass exists as if by magic even if nobody is playing it, as we have personally witnessed!) which offer some extremely well crafted, melancholic, guitar indie-pop.
Amy Cooper (guitar and vocals) and Noah Wheeler (drums and vocals) are obvious musical soul mates - their voices perfectly complement each other, their songwriting is well integrated, and their performances are flawlessly tight. The simplicity of their guitar pop formula and the clean rock production may be reminiscent of The Strokes, but the main ingredients of their music (songwriting and overall mood in particular) make this debut a completely different beast.
"Mass Hysteria" exists in a musical limbo floating between Belly's hyper-melancholic psych pop ("Way I See You", "Dark Shade"), the more straightforward and up-beat guitar pop of Juliana Hatfield and PJ Harvey circa 1992 ("Boyfriend"), and the obvious Nirvana influences ("Call Me", "Mass Hysteria").
Of course, The Naked Hearts don't have the angst that characterized all grunge bands - but it's their generation that seems to lack that trait. Almost surprisingly, instead, the band uses that genre's musical signature and fills it with some sort of innocence that instills a refreshing quality. Maybe this is the way the unavoidable, almost due by now grunge revival will sneak back to our ears? The record has at least two singles with noteworthy potential: "Like I Do" and "Mass Hysteria" - true pop gems that build up and open up with harmonized choruses exactly the way we like it - this is stuff that could also work on the dance floor. Is there anything better than dancing intensely to an emotional rocking song, after all?
Don't miss their free live show at 3rd ward on May 22.


Hip Hop NYC artist on the rise: Homeboy Sandman – The Good Sun

Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. When he heard Homeboy Sandman’s album he realized he’d had it too easy. About three years ago, Homeboy Sand stormed the NYC underground scene attending pretty much every open mic in the city—sometimes two or three a night. His hypnotic, tongue-twisting rhymes and unorthodox beat selection earned him an immediate distinction among his peers. With his third release “The Good Sun” (HighWaterMusic), Homeboy Sand shines with a warm, earnest delivery that reflects his ferocious drive and contemplative nature. His energy pulses through the tracks as he stretches and bends his words around every snap and pop. It's the type of album that you listen to and wish he was there listening with you so you could high-five him after each track. He'll be celebrating the release on June 1st at SOBs. Be prepared to spend most of the night frantically hopping around with your hands in the air. - BrokeMC


Eytan & the Embassy play Pop and Roll - release at Mercury on May 29

Eytan and the Embassy play that kind of pop music that throws you back to the 50s - something Elvis Costello was very good at, although these guys' opreation is more literal, almost revivalist. It's music that wears its light and fun emotions on its sleeve. Their CD release party at Mercury Lounge on 05.29 should be fun.