Broncho Bad Behavior Tour
Yip Deceiver, Tigers And Monkeys
200 41st Street S
Birmingham, AL, 35222
Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM
This event is 18 and over
Watch & Listen
Stick your head out the window and sniff the air: there’s a blizzard of badness brewing, and it’s not blowing over anytime soon. Sure, the political leaders, bullies, and other villains of various venoms are dominating the headlines, but these days the list of troublemakers extends well beyond the usual suspects.
From their home base in the Heartland, Tulsa, Oklahoma’s BRONCHO have a unique vantage point from which to survey the sins. Churning out thoughtful, nuanced rock and roll with an art school spirit and a punk rock heart since 2010, the band’s fourth album, Bad Behavior, finds them leaning into their strengths for their strongest effort yet. Following the catchy, playful vibe of previous albums Can’t Get Past the Lips (2011) and Just Enough Hip to Be Woman (2014), as well as the deliberate sonic intent of 2016’s sludgy, moodier art piece Double Vanity, the new record reveals BRONCHO’s fly-on-the-crumbling-wall vision of our moral climate, complete with a reenergized, accessible sound and the charmingly sardonic, smiling-while-sneering delivery of singer and bandleader Ryan Lindsey.
“It’s a reflection of the current world: everybody’s been acting badly over the last few years so we made a record about it,” Lindsey says. “There are multiple ways of portraying something as ‘bad,’ and there are moments of self- reflection throughout the record as though we could be talking about ourselves—but not necessarily. It’s observational, like we’re looking through muddy binoculars from a distance. It’s a blurry mirror image of the times from where we sit.”
Lindsey (vocals/guitar) and the band—Nathan Price (drums), Ben King (guitar), and Penny Pitchlynn (bass)—are a tight unit who have seen their songs featured at influential TV and radio and have toured the U.S. and Europe, including arenas with the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, The Growlers, Portugal.The Man, and Cage The Elephant. In the gritty warehouse district of Downtown Tulsa they have carved out a physical place for themselves, an industrial blank space where BRONCHO can experiment with sounds, performance, visuals, and more. It’s where they recorded Bad Behavior with producer Chad Copelin in the first half of 2018, a controlled process that allowed them to work at their own pace and by their own standards, almost like a secret club.
Bad Behavior slinks and purrs with a sense of lascivious flirtation. Lindsey sings with a mischievous twinkle in his voice, peppering his verses with suggestive uh-ohs and ahhs and at times barely pushing out his words to the point of whispering. Lines like “You caught me in the weekend/You caught me with your boyfriend” (“Weekend”) and “I got a thing for your mother/I got a thing to teach your father” (“Family Values”) match the primal pulse of the songs’ moods and vibes, and their pop sensibilities create a world where T. Rex, Tom Petty, The Cars, and The Strokes collide. “Keep It in Line” chimes along to a driving, pepped-up beat and serves as both the album’s catchiest moment and its closest swerve toward ethical commentary, as Lindsey’s narrator demands to be reminded of his place in the world while attempting to submit to his misgivings. The result is less an act of penance and more of honest reproach, an ultimate judgment that is matched in its directness only by the following track, “Sandman,” an overt yearning for pleasure that Lindsey calls the band’s answer to The Chordettes classic “Mr. Sandman.”
The record is filled with references to religion, sin, drugs, vice, and scandal bubbling just under the surface. It’s a palette familiar to anyone who has ever turned on the evening news, which Lindsey admits was a huge influence on him. “Through the writing process I watched a lot of CNN, and man there’s a lot of bad behavior there,” he says. “Not to mention that there’s a company making money off of people watching their depiction of it all. From an entertainer’s standpoint I get what they’re doing, calling everything ‘breaking news’ and keeping people glued, but taking up that kind of space can’t be good for society. Although it’s pretty fun to watch.”
Can all this unsavory activity exist without taking sides? Lindsey holds tight to his role as a relayer and is comfortable with leaving it to the audience to cast their own lot. “We’re assuming that everybody is coming from a
certain set of values, but ultimately that’s impossible,” he says. “There’s a lot of people who think a certain way about the world and aren’t as shocked by these things. Maybe we’re simply trying to start the conversation. The best news is just a report of what’s going on, without bias. This record is a non-biased, non-profit reporting on what’s going on in the world. Part of it’s an exploration in solving those problems, on a personal level and ultimately on a cultural level.”
Bad Behavior represents a picture of a band that have crushed their own commercial expectations and are doing what they want to do at their own pace. They’ve cleaned the slate and quietly made a return with urgent, bonafide pop songs. If you want to catch a whiff of Bad Behavior, simply stick your head out the window and breathe.
"Two dudes, two mics. Anything can happen."
Behold, the proclamation of Yip Deceiver, the tag-team all-analog dance duo, who broadcast sexxed-up jambox jaunts and light club floors ablaze at home in Athens, Georgia and beyond. Their debut album, Medallius, dishes out 11 tracks of rump-shaking, fist-pumping ecstaticism, from the minimalist Detroit-style bassline and funktified guitar strums of "World Class Pleasure" to the tightly-wound dance-anthem, "Get Strict." The sonic lovechild of producer/songwriter, Davey Pierce, and executive vibes manager, Nicolas "Dobby" Dobbratz, Yip Deceiver fills the void for music that can stoke a party-fire and eschews cooler-than-thou posturing.
Perhaps it's Italo-disco without the Italy, blasting iridescent electrofunk that howls with neon keyboard trills and 8-bit handclaps or more simply – synth-pop. "Medallius is an attitude and a lifestyle," Dobby says of the philosophy of their made-up title. "Medallius is always keeping an elegant attitude regardless of how trashy a situation is." The album keeps it classy. "Color Me In" could be music for an after-hours fashion show on Venus, or "Lover," Davey postulates, could provide the soundtrack for "an '80s or early '90s super-triumphant fringe sport movie, where someone moves somewhere and becomes a bad-ass at karate, skateboarding, or BMX riding." Dobby calls it "'smooth punk," Davey thinks it's "indie R&B."
Whatever you call their music, the result is undeniable: Motion. Emotion. Undulation and perspiration whether you're singing along in traffic jams or sweating it out in a dark, dank club. It's all by design. "Most of the songs on Medallius started as completely different songs before getting to the final version," Davey says,"'Tops Part II' started as a sort of homage to Led Zeppelin's 'Kashmir' and we decided that it would be better if Babyface produced it."
Onstage, they're antidote to the laptop jockeys and deejay types these days who simply sway behind a MacBook. This is a rock show you can dance to. "We try to make our live show as intimate as possible," Davey says. "We like everyone who bothered to show up feel like they are apart of the whole thing, because they are. We wouldn't be there if they weren't there and we want them to know that." And Yip Deceiver really works for it; they trade off wielding the mic, take turns charming the audience, and jump from keyboards to beat box and back again. "When we get up on stage and sing those songs, we mean it," Dobby says, "but we're not afraid to literally laugh at ourselves at the same time. It is a genuine expression of who we are and what we love without taking ourselves too seriously."
When producing Medallius, the guys created and recorded the collection in their Georgia homes and in Dobby's California studio, but back in the tightly knit creative community of Athens, Dobby says, is where the sound developed. They would ride bikes to mix the album with Andy LeMaster, whose studio was two blocks away from theirs. And to provide the album's signature retro-futuristic feel, they decided to use only the most cutting-edge technology circa 1983. "We are totally addicted to analog synths, FM synthesis, and MIDI Sequencers," Davey confesses. "We program our drum tracks on an MPC and we don't use soft synths or the like. Everything is hardware. We enjoy the process, the experimentation, and the immediacy of the machines we work with. We spend hours finding a sound and as soon as you change anything, it's gone forever. We love that."
Dobby's process springs from a source much less IBM and more, let's say, NSFW. "I have a dirty mind," he says. "I write dirty versions of all of our songs first to get it out of my head then erase the bad words and rewrite. I also tend to imagine myself as a strong Anita Baker or Chaka Khan, female R&B type when I'm writing. It's a delusion and a weird process but Davey lets me do it." Davey understands because he secretly strives to be the masculine side in their buoyant brand of indie R&B: "I try my hardest to emulate Luther Vandross."
After all, their obsession for R&B brought them together in the first place, back when Dobby was crashing at Davey's house in Athens. "One day he picked me up in his car to show me all the good places to eat lunch," Dobby recalls, "and the radio was on and we both started singing along to some Usher song or something. We were both laughing at each other surprised. Every once in a while you find someone who's got the same secret musical taste, they just don't talk about it. It's never who you think."
Yip Deceiver wants to be your guilty pleasure, that secret music that brings friends and strangers together for their outlandish and irresistible brand of new New Jack Swing, post-proto synth-funk, or whatever musical box that they will never cease to obliterate. Perhaps Davey puts it best: "It's music for a weird night of random adventure."