Arcati Crisis

Arcati Crisis

 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
BandPop

Arcati Crisis plays hooky, high-energy, head-bobbing, acoustic pop. The duo of best friends draws inspiration from indie rock, 70s folk, and 80s radio to craft intricate riffs and shared boy/girl vocals. Their harmony-laden sound evokes a poppier pair of Indigo Girls or a cheerier Fleetwood Mac.

Biography

Watch a full electric set: http://bit.ly/acfire1105
Watch a full acoustic set: http://bit.ly/actin1009

Arcati Crisis is the combination of Philadelphia-based singer-songwriters Peter Marinari and Gina Martinelli - a duo of best friends making unique, harmony-laden music. Their tightly-knit harmonies and riffs are supported by Zina Parrillo on drums to drive their throwback AM-radio songs into modern indie-pop territory.

For Arcati Crisis, “unique” is more than just an idle adjective. The pair of BFFs have never shared a kiss or a fight, all while equally shouldering lead vocals and guitars. Every set is a non-stop, boy/girl, pop/rock duet. On songs like “Holy Grail” and “Better” it’s often impossible to dissect the band’s tightly-knit harmonies and riffs. Despite similar split duties from single-sex influencers like CSNY, Hall & Oates, Indigo Girls, and even Sleater-Kinney, the nearest analogs to Arcati Crisis’s dual-sex dueling vocals is Fleetwood Mac. No modern, mainstream band comes close to their classic-rock-inspired interplay.

The band’s classic influences aren’t surprising - a love of music from before their births helped forge a friendship that originated in seventh-grade lunchroom food-fight during a brief, between-tables salvo of peanuts. Fast friends from that point forward, the pair spent their teenage years together attending concerts and acting in school plays, all while Gina taught Peter how to play guitar. As Peter stumbled through his small repertoire of chords, the pair joking dubbed themselves “Arcati Crisis” – after Gina’s first role in a play and Peter’s longtime internet nickname.

It wasn’t until the summer of 2001 that the tongue-in-cheek name turned into something more. Peter, now knowing many more chords, released a solo LP and invited Gina to participate in a daunting once-a-year project – a 24-hour non-stop home-recording session. After weeks of needling Gina to pen an original song for the session, she showed up with two - “Real End” and “Religion.” Along with Peter’s “Under My Skin” and “Punk,” they unwittingly recorded what would become the core of Arcati Crisis’s catalog.

Despite frequent co-writing of songs that show up in sets to this day, Arcati Crisis remained mostly a studio project while Gina and Peter split a college apartment. That changed in the fall of 2006, when the duo joined to rehearse for their annual appearance in the Shubin Theatre Holiday Revue and, afterwards, discovered that they didn’t want to stop rehearsing.

Starting with Peter’s newly penned “Standing” – a bouncy rock ode to their shared high school travails - Arcati Crisis re-arranged all of their old tunes, each now unmistakable in their interlocking guitar parts and intricate harmonies. Despite wielding a pair of acoustic guitars, the duo never debated taking on a "folk" label. Arcati Crisis was a pop/rock act that happened to be unplugged all the time.

After playing dozens of unplugged shows and releasing four LPs in just three years, in the fall of 2010 Arcati Crisis expanded to include efficient drumming from Zina Parrillo, a young veteran of the Philly rock scene. With Zina's intuitive rhythm arrangements to support them, Gina and Peter started slinging an electric guitar back and forth during sets - and Arcati Crisis's rock vibe was finally an audible reality.

Arcati Crisis has appeared on stage across Philadelphia at The Tin Angel, The Fire, Dawson Street Pub, The Rotunda, The Dive, TriTone, Blarney South, Zot, and Doc Watson’s, and at 2nd Saturday Collingswood and Snipes Farm in Morrisville, PA. They have served as the house band for The Shubin Theatre for over a decade, as well as providing music for diners at Triumph Brewing Company, The General Lafayette Inn, Dorian's Parlor, and Saxbys Coffee. They have shared bills with local phenomenons including Mutlu, Suzie Brown, Up the Chain, Dante Bucci, The Sleepwells, Joshua Popejoy, and David Cope.

Arcati Crisis performances are always imbued with the irrepressible joy and charm of best friends making music. Each new song the band debuts became an instant fan favorite – including Gina’s epic, end-of-world paean “Apocalyptic Love Song,” Peter’s acoustic dance-rock jam "Dumbest Thing I Could Do," and the band’s array of campy 80s classics like "Video Killed the Radio Star" and “Don’t You Want Me.”

Arcati Crisis continues to add new songs to their repertoire as they increase their profile in the Philadelphia tri-state area. Every time they play to a new crowd, they hear the same comment: “I’ve never heard harmony like that before!”

Whether it be their decades-spanning friendship or their unmatched male/female harmony vocals, for Arcati Crisis “unique” is more than an adjective – it’s their life.

Lyrics

Hyperbole

Written By: Peter Marinari

So okay i didn't play by your rules
And say i'm sorry when i was done running you through
But i meant what i said just like i mean what i do
And it couldn't hurt you to have a little follow-through.

So don't just push my buttons, break them in
Wear me out with all your favorite sins
And (won’t you) see if you can appeal to me
To find me a little zeal for this life.

Hyperbole, please do it for me
Make me more than i am, but a little bit less like me.
Hyperbole, please be more than i see
And won't you give me something that'll set me free.

So okay i get a little bit bitter with a little bit of wine
But i could make do with a vodka
Awash in a sea of spotlight but it's just not right
Because i try too hard to make this look good
And i care too much to be an effortless David
Doing it with no hands.

So i reject those who got their breaks easy
Because how will we ever know what they are capable of
Except basking, except basking
Except basking in your love.

Hyperbole, please do it for me
Make me more than i am, but a little bit less like me.
Hyperbole, please be more than i see
And won't you give me something that'll set me free.

I've got this beat in my chest, it never rests never rests
Never tacet for a second - i will not let you wreck this
Beat in my chest, it never rests never rests, never tacet for a second, no!

Hyperbole, please do it for me
Make me more than i am, but a little bit less like me.
Hyperbole, please be more than i see
And won't you give me something that'll set me free.

Fisher Price

Written By: Gina Martinelli

Knock’em sock’em robots on their plastic pedestal
Fleshy fingers on triggers at the base teaching them to kill
A slow moment results in decapitation, and laughter in the victory
How did I find myself here rooting for the blue team?

I’d like to say I’m a pacifist
But I’m too much of a realist
It’s the nature of being human to fight fight fight
For your god given rights or for no rights at all

There comes a time when you realize
That you only get one chance, there’s no more extra lives
You don’t get big from a magic mushroom
And you don’t find coins in an underground room
So you find that what you do really does matter
And you might resist it but me I’m fixing on being the mad hatter
Running rampant in the desert when the world is through

I’d like to say I’m a pacifist
But I’m too much of a realist
It’s the nature of being human to fight fight fight
For your god given rights or for no rights at all

Not to say that I have given up
Not to say I don’t have faith enough
But I read somewhere that it’s better to be safe enough
Rather than sorry, rather than sorry

I’d like to say I’m a pacifist
But I’m too much of a realist
It’s the nature of being human to fight fight fight
For your god given rights or for
No rights at all

Discography

Arcati Crisis periodically records LPs live at rehearsal, complete with improv alterations to lyrics and between-song-banter. The band offers each "Live @ Rehearsal" volumes free to audiences for a limited time.

Live @ Rehearsal, Vol. 1 - September 2007
Live @ Rehearsal, Vol. 1.5 - December 2007
Live @ Rehearsal, Vol. 2 - January 2008
Live @ Rehearsal, Vol. 3 - May 2008
Live @ Rehearsal, Vol. 4 - December 2008

Set List

Arcati Crisis wields a versatile set of original tunes, most of which are brisk pop songs 3-5 minutes in length. With the addition of a dozen instantly recognizable covers, they can play sets as short as 10 minutes and as long as two hours!

A typical hour set is anchored around fan favorites like "Fisher Price" and "Bucket Seat" as well as the songs with the most powerful hooks and harmonies, like "Love Me Not" and "Apocalyptic Love Song."

From there the band fills in the set depending on the venue, either flavoring it more rock with songs like "Bucket Seat" and Heart-influenced duet "Wait," or leaning more to laid-back singer-songwriter fare with Gina’s lounge-ish "Noncommittal" and Peter’s sighing “Better.”

For featured sets it isn't unusual for Peter or Gina to play a song from their solo repertoire while the other retunes or swaps guitars.

Though Arcati Crisis is not primarily a covers act, the band is known to prep recognizable tunes as duets, most of which draw from