Posted on November 14, 2011 |
I want to welcome Emily to the AGDFA fold. A California native who currently resides
in New York City, she will from time to time tell you what’s the happy haps in
hipster central a.k.a. Brooklyn.
For my first AGDFA contribution as your Brooklyn correspondent, I’m excited
to present to you one of my favorite new bands, DECADES. Over the past few
months, this dance-rock band has been playing tons of shows in the city.
I’m sure I’m not the only New Yorker who’ll say that it takes a lot to rile up
a NYC crowd, and this band has done it consistently. Their music is beat-heavy,
filled with catchy guitar hooks, and driven by vocalist Max Vernon’s soulful pipes. Any cleaning company NYC would get down to business cleaning up the clubs after a Decades show.
I recently spoke with Max, who describes DECADES’ sound as “indie dance rock with
disco and funk influences.” Their music always makes the crowd move.
Max added, “I think what sets us apart is that lyrically and vocally I’m not a typical
frontman for a band that makes our kind of music. Normally dance songs are about
‘get drunk and party,’ not about Nabokov novels or Josephine Baker.”
This sentiment was re-iterated by a recent bio that I read about the band:
“Usually, a band either makes you dance, or they make you think, but very rarely both. DECADES is an uncommon hybrid of intellect and soul. Fronted by a rail thin white boy who sings like a black woman, DECADES songs deal with Paris in the 1920’s, Russian lit, and sweaty disco sex. In short, it sounds sinister and catchy as fuck.”
And “catchy-as-fuck” is right. Their songs tend to play on rotation in my head.
I asked Max if he felt pressured to fit in with the “Brooklyn music scene.”
He responded, “I think it would be nice to be a part of the indie scene, but if
I’m honest with myself, of the Brooklyn scene right now, the bands and artists I
like really sound nothing like us. It’s more solo artists, and when I do listen
to music that sounds vaguely like us, it’s usually from an entirely different era,
like the 70s. My bread and butter is really soul and disco. So, I’m more interested
in being true to the kind of music I love, and if people dig it, then great.”
I couldn’t agree more. As long as they stick to their disco-inspired sound, I will
remain a loyal fan. While there is a strong intellectual quality to their lyrics,
there’s also a rawness about DECADES that I love. Their music is anything but
pretentious; they allow their audience to let go and dance, and sometimes
that’s all you want.
Last Friday, DECADES played as a part of the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival
at Music Hall of Williamsburg, alongside Fischerspooner (DJ set) and Diamond Rings.
Don’t miss them if you have the chance to catch a show.
Currently DECADES is working on an EP due out in late December.