"So You've Heard
This song deceives its listener as a progressive ballad, then, the guitar halfway through the song blew me away and then amazed me, and gives the listener a taste of what can be expected during a live jam. The song slowing and rapidly erupting into something awesome is ethereal."
comment by: Talon Records 06/24/2010
I could say excellent performance or quality production but the best part was I was tapping my fingers, rocking my head, using my imaginary bass drum and singing the chorus...guess that's the point. This is an awesome tune .."
comment by: In Your Head 06/29/2010
Chute is an alternative rock band from Washington DC. The band fuses together elements of classic rock, grunge, punk rock, and heavy metal to achieve their exciting sound. The band's debut album, "Crooked Doses of Happiness", was released in the fall of 2011. Chute has been making noise throughout the DC music scene for combining pop sensibilities with crunchy riffs, powerful vocals, and hard driving rhythms. The band has big plans for the upcoming year, the highlights including more touring in support of the album and their first music video.
The debut album "Crooked Doses of Happiness" represents the satisfying end to nearly two years of writing, recording, and performing. And it wasn't always easy. Says vocalist Ben Bargman, "I wish it came quicker sometimes. You kind of feel out the riff and you work and play along with it 10s of times, hundreds of times before you get the next idea for the song. Sometimes it comes easier than others, but most of the time, it's a hard process." The recording itself dragged on for over a year, and there were times the band felt burned out and the finish line seemed very far away. It was the desire for their hard work to pay off and the voices of encouraging fans that kept the band going. When it was over, the guys were confident they had a winner on their hands. The proof's in the pudding, so to speak. "We're really proud of this record. I think it's a good representation of us as a band, and how we've grown over the 2 years that we've been together", says drummer Alex Vakhlis. "Each of us likes a lot of different stuff, from Bush to Muse, NoFX to Judas Priest, and so on. Obviously, we love rocking out and all that good stuff, but we're suckers for a great hook and melody as well. I think there's something for everybody on the album."
Ben Bargman - Lead Vocals and Guitar
Konstantin Grodsky - Lead Guitar
Alex Vakhlis - Drums
Russell Snyder - Bass and Background Vocals
Chute EP - 5/1/10
Crooked Doses of Happiness (13 Track Album) - 11/4/11
Chute: Crooked Doses of Happiness
[+ Show ]
Chute is a Washington DC band who rocks with a sense of passion and urgency. "Crooked Doses of Happi...Chute is a Washington DC band who rocks with a sense of passion and urgency. "Crooked Doses of Happiness" is the debut album from vocalist-guitarist Ben Bargman, lead guitarist Konstantin Grodsky, bassist Javier Landa, and drummer Alex Vakhlis. Their sound is reminiscent of the best of 1990's rock radio. It is a seamless mix of not only the Seattle sound, but a more elegant blend consisting of dashes of Gin Blossoms, Tool, Matchbox 20, Wallflowers, Verve Pipe and more. Guitars are prominent throughout, with ample opportunities provided to showcase riffs, leads and acoustic. This album is strong from start to finish, each song different enough to make it a listener's choice on which will be your favorite. I highly recommend checking it out - it is easily accessible at first listen, and has enough layers to grow on with further plays.
Chute's Great Debut Album
[+ Show ]
I got an email a few months ago from Ben Bargman. He is the frontman for a Washington , D.C. area al...I got an email a few months ago from Ben Bargman. He is the frontman for a Washington , D.C. area alt rock band called Chute. He was wondering if I'd be interested in listening to, and possibly reviewing, an album that the band had recorded. I let him know that I would be interested but it'd be a while due to other commitments I'd made.
Well, I finally got a chance to listen to the album. And I'm sorry I didn't get to it earlier. The album is a tremendous mix of different elements; alt rock and classic rock with a hint or two of grunge and punk. The album is titled Crooked Doses of Happiness.
The members of Chute are Ben Bargman, Konstatin Grodsky, Javier Landa and Alex Vakhlis. Ben does the vocals and plays guitar. Konstantin is on guitar. Javier is the bass player and Alex is the drummer.
As happens a lot, most of the guys knew each other from other bands before joining up. Ben and Alex had played together in a regional band called Scarlit. They knew Konstantin from his days with bands like Force Major. And Javier had played in a Peruvian band called Diazepunk.
The album was produced by BJ Kerwin. Not only does BJ produce albums, he is also the drummer for one of my favorite rock bands, the Niki Barr Band.
Kicking things off to a great start is the song Venom. The vocals by Ben are really good and the music has killer guitar. The drumming isn't half bad either.
Roll The Dice has a more of a light rock touch. It has a great guitar bridge that is reminiscent of ‘70's styled ballad rock. The band did a pretty cool music video for this song.
So You've Heard begins with some great acoustic guitar and aching vocals. It is a terrific love lament ballad.
In A Fix is a tough anthem with a lot of different sounds melded together. Slick guitar moves the song along as Ben sings at times in an almost falsetto.
Thorn is a fast and furious paced tune. At least you'd think so from the intro. But after the intro, the song slows down a bit. The main verses are moderately paced and the chorus ramps it up again. This is another love lament tune. The vocals are great and the music even better.
Another really good ballad is This Ain't a Science. It has solid vocals that might remind you of a couple of different artists from different eras in rock history.
Lone Star has a solid drum background. There is some too cool guitar work in the middle of the song.
Brace Yourself is a soft ballad with sometimes aching seeming vocals.
Keep It Together begins fast and then slows down a bit. It has a head bopping, Billy Idol kind of sound at times, at others a moderate rock anthem tone.
Then there is the song Hanging Around. It has an almost classic rock anthem sound.
Killer rock anthem music backs somewhat aching vocals in the song Filter.
Head shaking music with tough guitar gives a decent backdrop for great vocals in Running In Circles.
Cure is a song that has fantastic rock ballad guitar. This ballad is probably my favorite on the album.
As I mentioned at the beginning, I'm sorry I didn't get to this album earlier. It is a fantastic album with several styles thrown together. The guitar and drum music on the songs are terrific and Ben does extremely well with the vocals.
So, if you like great rock music and are looking for a new band to listen to, check out Chute and their debut album, Crooked Doses of Happiness.
The album is on iTunes and can be found at amazon.com, CD Baby and other online venues.
To find out more about Chute and their debut album, you can visit their Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/chutemusic
Chute CD Review
[+ Show ]
MD based 4 piece Alternative Rock band Chute” releases their debut CD entitled Crooked Doses of Happ...MD based 4 piece Alternative Rock band Chute” releases their debut CD entitled Crooked Doses of Happiness released in 2011. Band members include Ben Bargman (Vocals/Guitars), Konstantin Grodsky (Lead Guitar) , Javier Landa (Bass), Alex Vakhlis (Drums).
The CD kicks things off into high gear with “Venom” a grinding guitar groove meshed against driving rock rhythm, emotionally charged vocal delivery and well placed harmonies from lead singer Bargman. Track 2 “Roll the Dice” serves up another solid low end groove, with melodic musical flow coupled with hooky harmonies and impressive vocal accents from Bargman. Track 3 my personal favorite “So You’ve Heard” shifts gears with its slithering musical intro eventually lending itself into a pulsating rock groove meshed with an infectious rock melody that flows and ebbs its way through to emotional fruition. As the CD unfolds I can hear many musical influences reminiscent of Green Day, Weezer, and even Muse. Right from the start you will notice Bargman and company feel quite comfortable just letting it all hang out musically, not holding anything back. The overall musical vibe has a nice, raw punk indie feel to it. The guitar playing is rock solid across the board as he dishes out impressive guitar licks, rock solid rhythm guitar playing and a few mesmerizing solos. Bargman’s got solid vocal timber and is full of passion and recklessness abandon. The musicianship from all the other members in the band has everything you would expect from a standard 4 piece rock band. The songs themselves are consistent musical experiences, each one possessing unique personality, flair and signature groove. From rocking Thorn”, “Keep it Together”, and Running In Circles” to dynamic “In a Fix” and “Lone Star” to heartfelt This Ain’t Science” and Brace Yourself” to melodic Hamgin’ Around” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with Track 12 “Cure” the prefect finale statement for a CD of this caliber.
If could say anything to Chute right now - it would be for Bargman to step back from the mic a bit on some of the slower/intro parts, find that emotional pocket and ride down the intensity a bit. I really like the voice, the passion and the raw intensity from Bargman, but he comes on way to strong across the board. Use the power mate when you need to, not all the time. Like a bold font in your face. Its’ fair to say Barger is guilty of “over singing” some parts very much like an actor “overacts”. In most cases "under singing" is actually better. All songs over 3.5 minutes tend to drag you to the finish line. I fully realize this is a subjective art form but many of the above issues effect the CD’s overall marketability.
In close Crooked Doses of Happiness is an action packed production from start to finish. It’s strong suit – its raw feel almost as if you were watching a band play live in the studio. If these guys have a slam dunk live presentation then that would be a deadly combination no doubt. The songs are extremely melodic, passionate and powerful – and will no doubt get your adrenalin pumping. Almost as if you were jumping out of an airplane.
Conversations with Cody: Ben Bargman of Chute discusses creative process behind ‘Crooked Doses of Happiness’
[+ Show ]
Although the band hails from around the world — Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Peru — the universal ideas...Although the band hails from around the world — Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Peru — the universal ideas in their music are what members of the band Chute hope will strike the right chord.
Coming together in Rockville in 2009, the four-piece alternative rock band will celebrate the release of its debut album “Crooked Doses of Happiness” on Friday at The Velvet Lounge in Washington, D.C.
The band’s debut single “So You’ve Heard” already has gotten some radio play on the DC 101 Local Lix program, and the rest of the album offers songs about love, lies.
Lead singer and guitarist Ben Bargman chats about the creative process behind the record.
Cody Calamaio: Your new album has been a year and a half in the making. What has the process been like?
Ben Bargman: It’s been quite a hassle. The band has been together for just about two years now and right when we started we got the group of guys together, we started writing music and a few months afterwards we tried to hit the studio because we needed something to show for ourselves. The studio is actually located northwest of Baltimore and we had to commute from the general Rockville area, so that is like an hour=plus commute each way and we were doing that a few weekends out of every month for a year and a half. […] The album is called “Crooked Doses of Happiness” and the meaning behind the album title kind of implies a false sense of hope and pleasure, and that message kind of relates throughout the entire album. I am kind of an abstract writer, so it’s up to the fan or the listener to really kind of dig in and create their own meaning. The general gist of it is sometimes you can’t escape the reality and you have to realize you have to deal with the consequences rather than try to mask them.
CC: When putting together the album, were you the primary songwriter or was it a collaborative process?
BB: I write the lyrics to all the songs and the band comes together. Sometimes I’ll come in with a guitar riff, or the guitarist will come in with a guitar riff, or the bassist will come in with something on the bass and we’ll all come together and make the big song. It varies from song to song.
CC: With that process, does it always come together quickly or do you have things that don’t gel?
BB: I wish it came quicker sometimes. It’s a process sometimes. You kind of feel out the riff and you work and play along with it 10s of times, hundreds of times before you get the next idea for the song. Sometimes it comes easier than others, but most of the time, it’s a hard process.
CC: With this title and idea of “Crooked Doses of Happiness,” what are some of the songs that comprise that?
BB: We have a song titled “In a Fix” and that means you’re in a hole or in a little trouble spot. It is primarily about someone who is trying to be on top of the world and his friends and family go along with his one-track mind of phasing out everyone, pretending this person is on top of the world and that leads to trouble. There are lyrics in the song that goes “marching down Main Street in my own parade.” He sort of has this little world that he’s in and ignoring the outside and anyone who’s trying to help him become a better person.
CC: How much of this album is personal to you or someone in the band?
BB: All of these songs kind of relate to the occurrences that we’ve run across […] It’s just kind of a realization of the thoughts we have in our everyday lives and kind of what we do to deal with them and the struggles we have. It kind of relates to all of our situations. Some of our band members are struggling to find work now. “So You’ve Heard” is another song on there; it’s sort of about how lies can spread.
CC: How would you describe your sound and what influenced your music?
BB: [My influence] personally is Bush, Gavin Rossdale. For the other bandmates we have Muse, Alice in Chains, Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age. Kind of the whole ‘80s, ‘90s era is our biggest influence.
CC: And does your sound have some of that throwback vibe to it as well?
BB: A little bit, it’s got some pieces of the grunge, some pieces of the retro-y stuff. It’s all sort of mixed in together. And our drummer Alex, he loves the ‘80s and the ‘70s. He likes to incorporate a lot of his drum work around that kind of stuff.
CC: What is something you hope a listener will take away from your music?
BB: I think I write more abstract stuff, but I want the listener to look at the lyrics. There is more than one meaning to a song when you read the lyrics all the way though. Sometimes it can relate differently to someone than it could to me for an example, and I think you’ll find that when you dig yourself into those lyrics. And I want them to take away a piece of the song that relates to their own personal life and I think every song on this album kind of has a connection in some way or the other to a person’s current situation.
Chute will perform Friday at The Velvet Lounge in Washington, D.C., 915 U St. NW. Doors open at 8 p.m., and the show begins at 9 p.m. Opening acts are Niki Barr Band and Black Dog Prowl. Tickets are $8. Call 202-462-3213 or visit www.velvetloungedc.com.
Crooked Doses of Happiness (2011):
2. Roll the Dice
3. So You've Heard
5. In a Fix
6. This Ain't a Science
7. Lone Star
8. Brace Yourself
9. Keep it Together
10. Hangin' Around
12. Running in Circles
Covers from artists like:
Flock of Seagulls
Stone Temple Pilots
Queens of the Stone Age
|Jul 29, 2013 Monday||7:00 PM||Velvet Lounge||Washington, DC, US|