There’s so much talk in the world right now – so many people yelling words at each other on screens – that when you come across a strong instrumental work like this one, it’s a refreshing escape from all the noise. Astoria, Queens-based experimental band You Bred Raptors? have achieved that and more with their new full-length album, International Genetics, and we’re psyched to present an exclusive stream of the release right here on Pancakes & Whiskey today. The post-rock trio’s new record is packed with lively melodies and firmly-percussive, yet meandrous jams – and they never lose that momentum. Each song ultimately blossoms into a palpable “yes” moment between the concordant musicians, whose cool synergy is felt throughout the almost-purely-instrumental LP – whether in the irresistible bounce of “Polkadot,” the engulfing good vibes of “Lagoon,” or the intoxicating, string-powered riffing of album single “Hyperbole.”
And if their sound – a wicked mix of 8-string electric bass, cello, drums, and glockenspiels – seems familiar, there are a few ways you may have already become acquainted with this locally-known band, who have been playing together since 2010. You Bred Raptors? are known for their masked performances (as shown in this 2015 documentary short), their current role as a house band for the off-Broadway hit, Sleep No More, and their early start as one of the real-deal Music Under New York (MUNY) bands – the select buskers who are granted permission to perform underground in subway stations throughout the 5 boroughs.
Frontman Peat Rains shared a thoughtful explanation of what the album means for YBR?, and why the effort was as intricate as it sounds. “International Genetics is a return to form for a band that’s never quite fit in with the crowd and never hung their collective hat on any reliable hat rack. We’ve constantly challenged ourselves to change our sound and to never be predictable or mediocre. Each album was named after a central character from Jurassic Park previously. Now, maybe we just ran out of cool characters or MAYBE we wanted to be more abstract with this one. The corporate idea that spawned such an audacious idea deserved a shout-out.”
“We are currently hitting a ceiling trying to navigate the political and very nefarious music business,” he explained. “After 1,000 shows, 4 albums and constant touring, we have a burning desire to climb the ranks. We want to balance our creativity with our longevity in this scene. It’s time for us to break out of the underground and show people we are a force to be reckoned with. We’ve made an album with a definitive story and arc in a time when attention spans can barely sit through a single. Deal with it. These are mini scores to short films that haven’t been made yet. Give it a shot… your grandmother will definitely love it.”
Article: Olivia Isenhart
Cover Image: Mike Peloquin