Spring is finally winding down to make way for those legendary summer nights. Music of all genres seem to find their niche here in New York City wherever possible following the seasonal shift. The men of You Bred Raptors? (YBR); Bryan Wilson, Peat ‘Epileptic Peat’ Rains and KC Solaris are no strangers to this. Already working the busking scene as part of the Music Under New York program, as well as being active participants of all things music, the men are surely honoring the craft in their own way. Case in point, the men were performing at DROM Thursday night to bring focus to their upcoming release, ‘International Genetics,’ on June 23rd.
A cool night was made even cooler with DROM being as dark as always while listeners made their way down below to the venue. A small crowd welcomed guests and the bar saved the day for many. People that hung back towards the entrance were perusing the myriad of merchandise being sold. Folks with drinks in their hands were chatting away as the men were setting up on stage. YBR began to pass out their signature masks amongst each other and curiosity was struck in the crowd from folks who had no idea what was going on. Behind the drum set a large sign hung with their name emblazoned on it with a blue heron underneath. A quick burst of feedback awakened the room during their soundcheck. The sound engineer was walking to each musician testing things out on his iPad like a professional. Each man on stage wore the same navy blue jacket with a ‘YBR’ patch on the front. All eyes then shifted right to Peat’s eight string bass guitar in all its glory as it was released from its case. Bryan sat comfortably with his cello tuning it up and KC made some final alterations to the drum set and they were ready to begin.
A jam opened up the show to an industrial rock feel with the power of strings close behind. It seemed to be a strange mix of ethereal instrumentation from another world. Of course, their masks were on as they played. Only in between each song did they remove to banter with the crowd and then put on a different one for the next song. All of the masks had simple masquerade styles with swirling designs and shapes on them. Most were black and white. All of that made it hard to distinguish the emotion that each musician was feeling up there. The only glimpse into their musical actions were their head bobs and sudden bounces. With encouragement of people to move up front, the crowd grew steadily. Peat took the lead on his bass and that made it all that much more surreal. His fingers were waves on that neck. They were not taking the usual approach to defining their tune and sound. They wanted people to revel in the music rather than be compelled to focus on their actions.
All of it was a funky industry of music. Intermittent jokes between each set helped to liven the mood. Twangs and bass wails overwhelmed the space. The licks were quick and intricate with fingers making their way all over the neck of that giant bass guitar. YBR were active in their instrumentation and the experimental improvisation was unique. Their sound was one of a kind filled with industrial cacophony. For those who enjoyed the grinding bliss, they must have been in heaven. For a casual listener, the music seemed to be ideal for emitting out of a welding studio with sparks and fire flowing in the fray. With each grind there was a bounce that kept a subtle funk inside. It was all about rusting it up. Any of the creepy feels from the masked figures were erased with their music. YBR’s endless pounding absorbed the building and listeners would be sure not to forget. Amidst the hollers and the wildness of the event, You Bred Raptors will be around, probably blowing things up in the process.