Brooklyn's FACULTIES may have created a new form of distinguished, underground pop. These five melancholy, electronic ballads were crafted by Rob Viola (production) and Vinny Lopez (vocals), and are steeped in the alienation and mechanized rumble of New York City's hum.
Rob and Vinny met at a karaoke birthday party after Vinny sang Nilsson’s “Everybody’s Talking” and even did the yodeling part. They met up later at Vinny’s apartment, which was outfitted as a pretty serious recording studio, even though Vinny had never been in a band. Sharing their influences (including Burial, Todd Rundgren, LCD Soundsystem) they hit the ground running, quickly completing their debut release.
If there is such a thing as an "existentialist" sound, the first two FACULTIES tracks "Weekend Warrior" and "Cold Hands" might be this music. Pointedly stark lyrics are underlaid by a slightly faded carpet of sounds, punctured and accelerated by subtle elements of percussion. These tracks live up to the promise of their titles: whirling through time and existence, torn between lust for living and world-weariness. Track three ("The Paranoid Style") expands on the latter and sounds like a result of prolonged solitude, while the rocking beginning of "Another Wave“ emphasizes the former, catapulting Vinny and Rob into a melody that sparkles with life. The EP closes with "Blood and Sand“, a lounge-like ballad, rounding off this hard-to-pigeonhole release in a dignified manner.
The aim of Oldenburg-based label "Samplefreunde“ is to find artists developing different styles of Electronica and Independent far from the mainstream. With FACULTIES they tracked down a well-qualified duo: while Rob played in bands in Montreal, Philadelphia and New York as a drummer, Vinny's talent for making music was overshadowed by his aptitude in film-making. He probably just forgot to join a band until now. Rob also works redesigning roadways for pedestrians in NYC, keeping him on the streets in every corner of the city.
released November 11, 2011
All vocals and lyrics by Vinny Lopez, all instrumental music by Rob Viola except Weekend Warrior: vocals, lyrics, keyboard and bass by Vinny Lopez, all other music by Rob Viola.
Produced, engineered and mixed by Rob Viola.
Recorded in their apartments, Brooklyn, NY - completed May 2011.
Mastered by Harris Newman at grey market mastering, Montreal, QC, Canada.
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