You Won't, The Spring Standards

You Won’t is the musical duo of Josh Arnoudse and Raky Sastri, who first met in 1999 as unlikely fencing partners in a high school production of the Broadway flop “My Favorite Year.” Some 17 years later, they are still collaborating closely but no longer assaulting each other with pointy metal rods. Since the release of their full-length debut “Skeptic Goodbye” in 2012, You Won’t has toured across North America, garnering praise from the likes of SPIN, NPR, KEXP, and The New York Times for their raggedly infectious and charmingly idiosyncratic sound. Their dynamic and enthusiastically unorthodox live performances have earned them supports slots with The Lumineers, The Joy Formidable, Josh Ritter, Lucius, and Deer Tick, and an appearance on NBC’s Last Call with Carson Daly. Their mixed feelings about social media have earned them scorn and derision. “Revolutionaries”, the band’s second LP, is at its heart a reflection on the crumbling of youthful idealism in the face of the compromises and moral ambiguities of adulthood. The title pays tribute both to the duo’s childhood home of Lexington, Massachusetts (site of the first battle of the American Revolution) and to the enduring, quixotic sense of shared purpose that has fueled their creative partnership for more than a decade and a half. Prior to forming You Won’t in early 2011, Arnoudse and Sastri had already been making theater, films, and music together for nearly a dozen years, enduring countless false starts, disappointments, and disillusionments along the way but never wavering in their support for each other and their collaborative vision. Their platonic marriage as a two-man rock’n’roll band proved the biggest challenge yet to this sacred artistic mission, and not coincidentally “Revolutionaries” is rife with references to shaken beliefs, shifting loyalties, and wounded pride. Self-produced by the band at home over a period of two and a half years, “Revolutionaries” is the product of a long, often Sisyphean recording process and approximately 10,000 hours spent banging foreheads against walls. The album’s raw, driving, cacophonous aesthetic is more expansive and sonically adventurous than that of its predecessor, the natural outgrowth of the four-legged noise circus You Won’t has been bringing to dive bars and rock clubs across the US for the past few years. At its musical core is the merging of Arnoudse’s evocative lyrics, lilting melodies and punk-infused guitar with Sastri’s nimble, jazz-inflected percussion and seemingly endless supply of obscure instrumentation (whirly tubes, electronic bagpipes, and singing saw are all employed here). Over 15 intertwining tracks, “Revolutionaries” tells a story of wrong turns, curveballs, and injured buttocks, interspersed with the occasional moment of unexpected clarity. Taken as a whole, the album is a thoughtful and frequently witty meditation on what we choose to believe, who we choose to believe in, and how these choices shape our lives. Most importantly, it represents the latest and most public salvo in a revolution that the members of You Won’t have privately been leading, in some form or another, for the past 17 years.

The Spring Standards

The Spring Standards have been told many things about their music since their start in 2008 – it makes people feel warm inside, it touches painful places. It's simple and sweet yet dark and utterly confusing. They've been called folk, pop, rock, Americana, indie and everything in between – sometimes all over the course of a 45-minute set. In spite of this, The Spring Standards are far from a band in the midst of an identity crisis. They are not trend-chasers or bandwagon riders. They are honest-to-goodness troubadours who let their music guide them, dutifully following wherever it might lead.

For 3 kids who grew up together in the woods and creeks of the Delaware/Pennsylvania border, their shared memories take them down winding back roads to starry open fields on quiet summer nights. They learned James Taylor covers in their parent's garage and played small side stages at local folk festivals while other kids their age were doing way cooler things. Their love of music was the tie that always bound them to each-other, and making it together quickly became the lifeblood of their friendship. It's that connection that has carried them through ups and downs, in and out of one another's lives over the years and miles, to this moment in Brooklyn, NY as they prepare their third independent release.

The Spring Standards are taking more risks than ever before with their new album, a double EP entitled yellow // gold. In it, the band explores the two contrasting sides of their musical identity.

yellow is a 7-song disc filled with warmth and melancholy, with tunes that tell stories of hope in the face of longing and loss. It harkens back to their roots, drawing inspiration from the music they grew up with and those things that first drew them together – the simple magic of voices raised in harmony, the beauty of acoustic instruments.

gold is a 5-song battle cry from some dark secret place, full of frustration and excitement, tension and relief. These songs invoke urban landscapes and dingy rock clubs, long stretches of deserted highways from Orlando to Seattle, the honking horns and screeching trains of New York City. They are pulsing and frantic, desperate to be heard and understood.

When juxtaposed, these two EPs capture the energy of a band in a moment of significant growth and self-realization. A band that's not afraid to throw out expectation and follow their instincts into uncharted waters, trusting that their beloved listeners will take the leap of faith along with them. And that faith is well-founded, given that this is the second fully fan-funded album The Spring Standards have released. The support they've received from their growing fan base has allowed them to stay fully independent, an invaluable gift that encourages them to take risks and continue growing well beyond their comfort zone. They fully embrace the symbiotic nature of that relationship, and cherish the unique connection they've been able to cultivate with fans near and far.

yellow // gold was recorded over the course of 2011 at Sounds Like a Fire Studio in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn. It features some of Brooklyn's finest and a lot of delicious food was eaten during its creation. It will be released in May 2012.

Laundry Day

Laundry Day are a band who write songs about humans, cats and mac and cheese. Formed by four friends going through their own kinds of personal horror, at first they existed more as support group than musical project. Appropriately enough, they formed as a one-off opener to fill an empty slot on a local bill. But their practices, equally devoted to emotional support and lazy slack-rock songs, were too creative to deny. These circumstances seem like a recipe for sad new-wave bleating, but the hour before rehearsal talking about the pain of daily existence drained all traces of overbearing seriousness out of their music. The songs that emerged are a reminder of that time before college rock became indie rock, driven forward by a desire to take everything as seriously and unseriously as possible. In the last year Laundry Day have shared bills with Infinity Girl, You Won't Ovlov, Kal Marks, Jerrfery Lewis, Mal Blum, The Whigs and more. Laundry Day are Alexa Ambrose, Alex Burnet, Sam Carlson and Kuki Kooks.

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