LOS ANGELES At Troubadour On 10/19
With Pains Of Being Pure At Heart
Why There Are Mountains Out 9/22 On Sister’s Den Records
“In Her Gentle Jaws” Deluxe Vinyl & Digital Edition This Fall
Cymbals Eat Guitars
“You could blame it on so many bands being from autophobic NYC, or that the Pacific Northwest gods of indie are still going too strong to already be a primary influence, but neither would explain New York’s Cymbals Eat Guitars’ Why There Are Mountains. While there’s plenty of geographical signifiers on their debut, it’s almost topographic in its approach, without hooks and choruses so much as map-like layouts of mountains and sloping valleys.” — Pitchfork [Best New Music]
“The most obvious thing about Cymbals Eat Guitars is that their epic, widescreen indie rock bears a striking resemblance to that of Built To Spill and early Modest Mouse.” – Fluxblog
“Why There Are Mountains may be one of the best ‘indie’ (the album is self-released, so, y’know, actually ‘indie’) albums of the year. And with the major label skyline being obliterated like something out of Independence Day, it’s time to batten down the hatches.” – NME
“Staten Island quartet Cymbals Eat Guitars came out of seemingly nowhere when, a little under a month ago, their debut album, Why There Are Mountains, was bestowed Pitchfork’s “Best New Music” honor. Who were these guys? Staten Island, seriously? They were, of course, four hustling musicians who’d struck gold on the songwriting front, crafting a beastly, obtuse album that sounds a lot like Built To Spill, if Built To Spill actually had some youth on their side and could still throw down in a street fight or get upset over a girl.” – RCRD LBL
““The band’s sound is hugely ambitious, explosively energetic force of nature that is clearly influenced by a multitude of 90’s indie rock classics from Pavement to Built to Spill
to Modest Mouse while still achieving something that is forward-looking and unpredictable.” – MTVU
“I’ll be the first to go on record saying that Cymbals Eat Guitars/Joseph Ferocious will end up indie famous within the year.” – Charles Bissel, The Wrens
“We were at Barnes & Noble today and I was so excited to see Maximum Rock’n’Roll’s still publishing,” says Cymbals Eat Guitars bassist Neil Berenholz, his eyes widening at the very thought. “Joe was just like, ‘What’s that?’”
Welcome to one of the many contradictions that have shaped Cymbals since the spring of 2008. First, there’s that age thing, with 32-year-old Berenholz hailing from the golden age of bedroom recordings, screen-printed T-shirts and Kinko’d zines, and the rest of the group reared on genre-jumping iPods and Web sites that can propel or pulverize an artist’s entire career with a single review. As frontman Joseph D’Agostino—the band’s co-founder along with drummer Matthew Miller—is quick to admit, “I’ve been reading Pitchfork since I was in ninth grade.” Which was also when he discovered “Shady Lane” and started shedding the alt-rock influences that informed the cover songs he and Miller hammered out in high school.
The duo’s in college now, so it seems rather fitting that their full circle moment didn’t involve a capsule review in a print magazine; it happened when Pitchfork bestowed the band’s DIY debut, Why There Are Mountains, with a “Best New Music” stamp soon after its soft release. And we do mean soft. While many buzz-minded new artists dive straight into Brooklyn’s bustling music scene, Cymbals Eat Guitars were happy fine-tuning tracks from the outside, looking in—first in elaborate demos with the Wrens’ Charles Bissel (starting way back in the summer of 2007, before the group even had a name), and finally in a proper studio with Kyle “Slick” Johnson (Modest Mouse, The Hives). Like many other early fans, Johnson inadvertently discovered Cymbals Eat Guitars on New York’s Lower East Side circuit, playing the kind of early sets that come with being spread between Staten Island, Manhattan and Queens.
“We didn’t know anybody in the beginning,” says D’Agostino, “So it was hard to get any shows.”
“And since no one was pursuing us,” continues Berenholz, “We had to pursue opportunities ourselves.”
On a practical level, this has led the band to physically call the country’s most popular record shops and ask them to carry Mountains’ initial pressings. Lucky for them, the record sold itself, generating interest as far away as the UK’s influential Rough Trade shop and the NME, who wrote, “Why There Are Mountains may be one of the best ‘indie’ (the album is self-released, so, y’know, actually ‘indie’) albums of the year. And with the major label skyline being obliterated like something out of Independence Day, it’s time to batten down the hatches.”
Hype-raking reviews aside, there’s this important detail: Why There Are Mountains is a real album, a ‘grower’ that dishes out simple pleasures with every spin. Aside from obvious recurring elements (D’Agostino’s restless yelp and sinuous riffs, Miller’s Wire-y rhythms paired with Berenholz’s melodic bass style, and the orchestral layers of keyboard), there are shades of shoegaze (the patient, feedback-bathed passages of “Share”), Motown (the buoyant bass lines of “Cold Spring”), and Technicolor-tinged pop (the breezy horns and schizo synths of “Indiana”). Not to mention pure chaos, as explored in the gate-crashing “…And the Hazy Sea,” the tension-ratcheting “Like Blood Does,” and the final, throat-tearing moments of “Wind Phoenix (Proper Name).”
As for what’s next, well, one new song already has a “lazy guitar line” that’s indebted to indie pop, floating over a disco inspired rhythm section.
“You guys are laughing,” says Berenholz (and they are), “but that’s what I’m talking about here—people bringing different influences to the table, until my chocolate’s clearly in your peanut butter.”
“We aren’t shying away from the dance beats,” adds D’Agostino.
“Sometimes,” says Miller, smiling, “they are appropriate.”
US Tour Dates
8/8 – KEXP Mural Summer Concerts – Seattle, WA
9/5 – Middle East Downstairs – Boston, MA (W/ POBPAH)
9/6 – La Sala Rossa – Montreal (W/ POBPAH)
9/7 – Horseshoe Tavern – Toronto (W/ POBPAH)
9/8 – Logan Square Auditorium – Chicago, IL (W/ POBPAH)
9/9 – Stage Door at The Orpheum – Madison, WI (W/ POBPAH)
9/10 – Slowdown – Omaha, NE (W/ POBPAH)
9/12 – Monolith Festival – Morrisson, CA (W/ POBPAH)
9/13 – Kilby Court – Salt Lake City, UT (W/ POBPAH)
9/15 – Neumos – Seattle, Washington (W/ POBPAH)
9/14 – Neurolux – Boise, ID (W/ POBPAH)
9/17 – Musicfest NW @ Doug Fir – Portland, OR (W/ POBPAH)
9/21 – Casbah – San Diego, CA (W/ POBPAH)
9/22 – Club Congress – Tucson, AZ (W/ POBPAH)
9/24 – Lola’s – Fort Worth, TX (W/ POBPAH)
9/25 – The Mohawk – Austin, TX (W/ POBPAH)
9/26 – One Eyed Jacks – New Orleans, LA (W/ POBPAH)
9/27 – Club Downunder – Tallahassee, FL (W/ POBPAH)
9/28 – The Earl – Atlanta, GA (W/ POBPAH)
9/29 – Local 506 – Chapel Hill, NC (W/ POBPAH)
9/30 – Black Cat – Washington DC (W/ POBPAH)
10/1 – Ottobar – Baltimore, MA (W/ POBPAH)
10/3 – Webster Hall – New York, NY (W/ POBPAH)
10/5 – First Unitarian Church – Philadelphia, PA (W/ POBPAH)
10/16 – Alfred University – The Knight Alfred, New York
10/17 – Boston University – Boston, Mass
10/18 – Great American Music Hall – San Francisco, CA (W/ POBPAH)
10/19 – Troubadour – Los Angeles, CA (W/ POBPAH)
11/10 – The Troxy – London , UK (W/ The Flaming Lips)
11/11 – The Troxy – London, UK (W/ The Flaming Lips)
Joseph Ferocious – vocals/guitars
Neil Berenholz – Bass guitar/ vocals
Matthew Miller – Drum set & percussion
Brian Hamilton – Keyboards
The Depreciation Guild
“Laptop pop and shoegaze. Surprisingly, the mishmash of these two genres with video game music feels organic” Pitchfork
“Soaring, shoegazing soundscapes of pop wonder” Chromewaves.com
“Not to be missed!” Insound
“These [three] gents’ music is a wonderful collage of guitars, drums, fuzzy electronics, and heartfelt lyrics that, in this writer’s opinion, places them a couple steps ahead of most post-rock acts. Makes me want to hop the L train and give these guys a hug.” XLR8R.com
As effacingly discrete as their name, Brooklyn-based 3-piece The Depreciation Guild have been making underground waves to match those created by their fuzzed-out, reverb-drenched melodies.
Artfully combining progressive and retro chic, the trio draws influence from shoegaze guitar walls, dreampop highs, and the rigidity of electronic rhythms, while creating a sound that is a bit different from both, dreamily reinventing their musical heritage.
The pieces may seem disparate, but they weave together masterfully. One part stems from the utilization of a 8-bit Nintendo soundcard: painstakingly self-taught by frontman Kurt Feldman, the modified entertainment system is used to compose a crushing backdrop of rhythmic, synthetic elements. Yet its use is tasteful, seamlessly blending with guitars, drums and hushed vocals to create the band’s layered sound.
Along with Kurt on vocals, guitar and soundchips, The Depreciation Guild is comprised of twin brothers Christoph Hochheim (guitar, vocals) and Anton Hochheim (live drums).
Following their premiere full-length In Her Gentle Jaws, self-released in December ‘07 exclusively as a free download, the album has already found its way to over 90,000 hard drives. The stir across the Internet, as well as in their own backyard, is testament to some breathtaking songwriting and arranging. A musical piece to be heard as a whole saturated in color, and drifting into dream.
2008 highlights for the band included headlining the annual Geekfest in Mexico, and playing American Eagle’s New American Music Union festival in Pittsburgh, sharing a stage with the likes of Bob Dylan and The Raconteurs.
Also notable is the band’s close relation to new indie breakouts The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, as the bands busily share two members in Kurt and Christoph. Though The Depreciation Guild’s existence pre-dates The Pains’, this alliance has already resulted in one sold-out tour of the US, and another cross-country trek is booked for the bro-bands in September/October.
And now, one of The Depreciation Guild’s finest songs to date, the new single, “Dream About Me,” is set to break on Kanine Records, on white 7” vinyl and digital download.
With the band newly signed to Kanine, and ready to record their second full-length this summer with Josh Eustis of Telefon Tel Aviv at the helm, it’s clear the story has only just begun.
For Press Contact
Grace Jones – email@example.com