Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum

Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum

“We never set out to start a band,” says Peter Yanowitz, one third of the avant-indie trio Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum. “It feels more like the band started us.”

Recorded spontaneously for the sheer joy of creation, Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum’s captivating self-titled debut showcases the magic that can happen when three consummate artists commit themselves to fully inhabiting the present, to following their musewithout boundaries or restrictions. The songs here are adventurous, with bold, experimental arrangements that incorporate everything from distorted synth rock and ethereal electronics to dreamy folk and R&B. It’s an intoxicating mix, one that transcends genre as it draws equal strength from the remarkably disparate backgrounds of its progenitors.

“We all bring something unique to the project,” says vocalist Michael C. Hall. “We’re a three-legged stool; we couldn’t stand up without all of us working together.”

While Hall may be the most recognizable face in the band—he was nominated for an Emmy for his work on the HBO drama Six Feet Under, won both a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors Guild Award for the acclaimed Showtime series Dexter, and was selected by David Bowie to star in his musical, Lazarus)—his bandmates boast similarly prodigious resumes. Yanowitzbegan his career playing drums in The Wallflowers before going on to co-found indie stalwarts Morningwood and work with artists as varied as Natalie Merchant, Yoko Ono, Andrew W.K., Allen Ginsberg, and Billy Bragg & Wilco, who enlisted him to perform on their seminal ‘Mermaid Avenue’ collaboration. Keyboardist Matt Katz-Bohen, meanwhile, spent the last decade touring and recording with Blondie, in addition to working with the likes of Boy George and Cindy Lauper.

The trio’s collaboration began innocently enough, with a series of late-night studio hangs fueled by a shared love of pushing art into uncharted territories. Taking their name from a phrase suggested by Katz-Bohen’sdaughter, the group constructed an entire world for their music, imagining the Butterfly Museum as a physical space brought to life with the help of legendary mixer Tom Elmhirst (Adele, The xx).Delivered with dense harmonies atop a solemn organ pad, EP opener “Don’t” represents both an atmospheric invitation into the museum’s shimmering halls and an ideal introduction to a band that delights in toying with expectation. “Vicious,” for instance, begins as an explosive dose of heavy rock before dissolving into a classically-inspired interlude, while the hypnotic “Ketamine” builds from hushed intimacy to frenetic energy, and the sleek “Come and Talk to Me” blends pulsating house production with sparkling falsetto vocals. Keyboards frequently fill the role of guitars on the EP, but closing track “Sweet and Low” offers yet another twist, starting off with just a strummed acoustic. It’s a rare organic moment, one designed to gently usher you out of the museum and back into the real world.

“I came into the studio with fully formed lyrics for that song,” says Hall, “and the guys discovered the chord structure that would work underneath as I sang it. The first time we played it, it sounded exactly how I imagined it would. It was a magical moment

Guy Furrow (a.k.a. Miss Guy) is best known as the lead singer of Toilet Boys, as “a pioneer in the DJ world” (Marc Spitz/Spin) having been one of the first Open Format DJs, and as a cutting-edge songwriter and solo artist. His musical sensibility and style were nurtured in the rock scene of New York City with mentors including Deborah Harry and Boy George.

With the Toilet Boys, Guy toured the US, Europe, and Asia with Blondie, The Ramones, Rancid, The Damned, Joan Jett, Motorhead, The Donnas, and The Red Hot Chili Peppers.

As a DJ, he took New York by storm at the legendary party, SqueezeBox! He has spun in booths all over the world from Tokyo to Milan to London including events for Bon Appetit Magazine, MAC Cosmetics and MAC Pro, Marc Jacobs, Bideawee, Bailey House, and the Baltimore Museum of Art. He continues to rock the house on the weekends throughout NYC.

Guy can be heard singing along with Debbie Harry on the song Rave as part of Blondie 4(0) Ever album. He also co-wrote the hit single Charm Alarm with Deborah Harry, which was certified gold. He co-produced the Blondie hit In the Flesh with Super Buddha and co-wrote Stay Away from Pretty Boys with Boy George. His song Dumb Blonde was featured in the film Concussion, an Official Selection 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

Guy’s photography shows off his incredible eye and style in amazing portraits of celebrities, music icons, and New York City's most beautiful creatures of the night. His work has been seen in the New York Post, Parade, Salon, Renowned for Sound, Medium, and in a Lincoln Center event program for Valentino. His fine art photography has sold extensively in both group and solo shows with his Bubble Bath series receiving raves.

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