BRONCHO will be opening for Cage The Elephant on May 7th At the masonic temple here in Detroit. The band will be previewing songs from their upcoming new album, “Double Vanity”, which will be released on May 27th. Their third LP has brought about winds of change for the Oklahoma natives.
BRONCHO, who have been rocking together since 2010, showcased their garage feeling pop/rock early punk jam (clearly inclusive) sound on their first two albums, “Can’t Get Past The Lips” and “Just Enough Hip To Be Woman”. Previous LPs earned them critical acclaim, while plays on HBO’s show “Girls” and some ads garnished attention. The raw feel of their debut has solidly transformed into a more layered, complex sound. Resonating vocals on tracks like 2013’s “Record Store” and the vastly popular catchy “Class Historian” seemed to foreshadow a sonic exploration to come.
It’s always a bold statement for a band to even slightly stray from the sound they are known for, possessing a fearlessness for expansion and experimentation. BRONCHO has taken their music in a new direction with this new album’s 11 song effort. The band recently released the album’s first single, “Fantasy Boys” in March.
While their rocking pop vibe is still solidly intact, the album finds the group sonically floating in more of a beautiful dream-like hypnotic haze (cue early Crocodiles and Crystal Stills throwback ambiance). Spacey far off fuzzy guitar effects pair wonderfully with reverberating vocals.
“Double Vanity” is lower-key, with a more relaxed feel than either of their previous releases. It touches on fun themes such as lady loving (cue “Jenny and Jenae”) with melodic choruses, while still ushering in a darker sonic shift.
Even with a slower feel, more uptempo tracks like “Speed Demon” and the very catchy “Señora Borealis” make for an appropriate balance that is easy to keep on repeat.
The album perfectly captures that mellow feel of a good time, as well as all of those high school 80’s cinematic classics. It feels like something out of that last slow dance scene, or that final confession of love us viewers have waited the entire movie to transpire.
The band will be embarking on their “Double Vanity” tour across the US from late May and all throughout June.
I caught up with BRONCHO’s Ryan Lindsey to ask some questions about the new album and upcoming tour:
Phoenixx Music Magazine (PMM): Let’s start at the beginning. Do you remember the point you got together and decided, let’s make music?
Ryan Lindsey (RL): We’d all been playing together in other bands for a while, so it was actually kind of just pretty natural. It just kind of happened.
PMM: It’s always wonderful when a band is unafraid to try new things, and veer in experimentative directions. Your sound has definitely evolved since your first two albums. Was there a specific instance or idea that prompted this change?
RL: No, not really. I think we all naturally like to keep moving in one way or another, whether it be actually physically or artistically so there was never really a conversation about what to do next after the last record. It was more like, let’s just make another record. That process is always one where it’s like everybody’s into seeing what happens, rather than having to necessarily have a specific plan or an idea of what to do. It’s just kind of let’s get together and see what happens.
PMM: They say life imitates art and vice versa. Is the album at all a reflection of a shift or growth in the way you’ve been living as a band, and as every day people?
RL: Yeah, I’m sure that that has something to do with it. I’m sure that our real lives creep into even the fantasy we’re trying to build around, the stuff that we create.
PMM: How have fans been reacting thus far to the new direction your music has taken?
RL: Usually pretty much everybody I’ve shown it to has either gotten mad or really gotten into it. I think it throws some people off. I think that it’s probably more different than we even realized ourselves from the last record, so I didn’t even ever think about somebody being thrown off that much by it.
PMM: Honestly, listening to the record right before this, there were a couple of songs that I was really able to hear a foreshadowing of this change. I wasn’t surprised when I revisited your whole catalog, but I’m sure so many people are just used to your older sound.
RL: Yeah. I’m glad that you see that because I kind of feel the same way. It’s been more of a gradual build to this place rather than just a complete left turn, but some people view it that way… and it kind of freaks them out, which is also kind of fun.
PMM: Of course, Speed Demon is one of those sort of cliche common terms… but I have to ask… Is it at all a nod to Michael Jackson’s “Bad” track?
RL: No it’s not, but I love Michael Jackson. We’re always trying to nod to him. It wasn’t specific to that track. We’d been talking about a song called “Speed Demon” for a while, and then it just came together. It’s kind of funny because we have several songs that are the same name as other more well-known songs like “Two Step” and “Soak Up The Sun”, so I think we’re open to anything.
PMM: Do you foresee sticking with this sound for a while, or just waiting to see which direction the music takes you?
RL: I guess I’m waiting to see what happens next. I like to be open-minded to any possibility in general and I definitely feel that way about music as well.
PMM: What can the crowd anticipate in terms of material on this upcoming tour? Are you planning to mainly spotlight tracks from “Double Vanity”, or will there be some older material as well?
RL: I think we’re gonna try to play everything. As long as people feel like hanging around, we’ll keep playing.
PMM: Is there anything that you have, or would like to have in the works? Basically, what can we expect next from BRONCHO?
RL: We’re really just working on playing these songs live, that’s what we have planned. And…we just wanna stay alive, you know?
Review and interview by: Tiffany Cuthrell