Brother George
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Brother George

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF
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Brother George are a rock and roll band out of Chicago, IL.
For anyone who wants to take a listen, here’s a link for their newest record called Big Piney.

Here are some of the things people have been saying about their record:

“The band has a clean and catchy sound that will take them far.” – The Deli National

“Big Piney is bound to be one of the greatest indie albums of 2012? – IMR Magazine

“I love the shitting shitty Fuck Fuck out of it.” - SYFFAL

“They are the quintessential Chicago band that just wont quit.” - Windy City Rock

“Addictive, jangly garage rock with sick grizzled guitar riffs” – Loud Loop Press

“Big Piney is fun, and chock full of talent, an album full of spirit and a noble homage to the musical style of yesteryear.” – Cincinnati Music Examiner - breakdownmusicpress.com


This band is from Chicago, I've never heard of them, but I listened to their album Big Piney over the weekend and I think I love the shitting shitty Fuck Fuck out of it. It sounds like the Guess Who got hold of some really primo boss reefer bro. While I can't deny the obvious presence of plaid shirtz in their songwriting, I can disregard that long enough to consider them the perfect must to listen to when the tornado sirens go off at 10am on the first Tuesday of the month. HEAR THAT? SIRENS BRO. TORNADA SIRENS BRO, IT'S JUST PART OF LIVING IN THE MIDWEST BRO. Wait, Brother George aside, do other people in other states have sirens go off at 10am every first Tuesday of the month bro? I think Brother George might be one of my new manbandcrushes bros. - Syffal.com


Brother George is a four-piece indie-rock group from our very own Chicago. In fact, you may have heard the group while venturing down Milwaukee Avenue near the six corners in Wicker Park. The band practices in its loft apartment, which is chock-full of instruments — from about a dozen duck-taped tambourines to a theremin. The group’s live set is one not to be missed. Lead singer Sagan Jacobson sings provocatively as the ensemble of various riffs and vocals rise and fall with strophic synchronicity.

Listen to the song “Olivia Oh Yeah,” from Brother George’s recently released EP, Piney. - Popstache


Local rockers Brother George are quite a mysterious puzzle. The quartet excels at gentle folk numbers, but throws the manual out the car window by adding spacey atmospherics and big, lush pop harmonies. When Brother George isn’t channeling the Flaming Lips on songs like “Truly Yours” off its album Big Piney, the band churns out some addictive, jangly garage rock with sick grizzled guitar riffs on tracks like “Keep U Mine” and “Olivia Oh Yeah”. If you like your rock to serve multiple purposes, Brother George aims to satisfy all 52 of your personalities. LISTEN: “Keep U Mine“ | Also appearing: Mercies. The Cyclist headlines. - Loud Loop Press


Brother George can make you laugh, cry, dance, rejoice in arms… they are the quintessential Chicago band that just wont quit. The band have just released a new album titled Big Piney, which you can stream in its entirety on their bandcamp page.

Brother George will be performing tonight, Saturday the 18th, at their CD release party at Beat Kitchen. They will be headlining with openers Bestfriends and Cougar Island. 8 p.m., $8 at door. RSVP on Facebook or via their website .

Check out "So Many Arms to Hold Me," the first track off the new album, below. - Windy City Rock


Brother George released their debut full-length album, Big Piney, last month. This is the indie rock band's follow-up to their February ep, Piney. The band has a clean and catchy sound that will take them far. The band recently performed the addictive lead track from their album, "So Many Arms to Hold Me" at Threadless.

You can catch Brother George at Beat Kitchen on Sept. 8th and at Burlington Bar on Sept 19th. - The Deli National


"Big Piney" by Brother George is a Indie-Rock album with a 60's throwback vibe.

As far as the stylistic sound of the record goes, think The Zombies meets The Guess Who. While some songs do have a more modern indie feel to them, the majority of there style seems to stem from the golden era of Rock. Taking that classic 60's sound and utilizing useful elements of it is nothing new to the music market, other modern bands that have capitalized on adaptations of this style are Summer Fiction The Greenhornes.

As the album progresses, the band even dabbles in psychedelic, such as in the song "Truly Yours" which features heavily effected sound bytes run through a gamut of heavy synthesizers creating quite the experimental trip.

Altogether "Big Piney" is fun, and chock full of talent, an album full of spirit and a noble homage to the musical style of yesteryear.

"Big Piney" by Brother George is available at their Bandcamp page. - Examiner.com


A great album does far more than take us to another place; It fits us into someone else’s shoes. Then, after we walk down a stranger’s memory lane for a mile, we realize that their path is a reflection of our own. The Chicago-based Brother George have written us all into the stories of their debut album, Big Piney.

With heartfelt lyrics, dreamy harmonies, and masterful musicianship, it feels like they are showing you a slide show of all your growing pains and triumphs. Their ability to connect on such a deep level with the listener is a powerful force, echoing through all of our memories, shaking them gently back into focus. Yes, they know just how it feels, and it’s comforting to know someone understands.

“So Many Arms to Hold Me,” the first track on the album, gently invites us into introspection with dreamy strums of guitars. Sagan Jacobson’s diverse guitar work and vocal range is made clear by the first song and his voice blends beautifully with Neal Neumann (bass) & Ryan Culbertson’s (rhythm guitar) backing vocals. The always energetic drumming of Zane Scott shines under the lively chorus. Our empathy is gained right away in that honest, universal question:

“Got so many arms to hold me.
Could it really be?
Could it be love?”

The sincerity of Brother George’s lyrics throughout the album’s entirety, acts as a trail throughout the musical landscape that their music crafts with clear continuity. The fork in the road offers enticing routes to the meaning of the song. Sometimes, they speak directly to a character to demonstrate a feeling and we learn from witnessing, such as “Olivia Oh Yeah,” and “Caroline.” It’s as intimate as a letter from a lover when the vocalist’s speak directly to us with that degree of openness.

“Truly Yours,” proves their admirable vulnerability with its love poem lyrics:

“I drink in the street and break my glass.
To hold her hand, I’d walk on it.
To hold her hand,
I’d walk a mile of broken glass.”

Definite nods to Bright Eyes’ & Elliot Smith’s style of heart-in-your-face emotive indie rock are clear in this track. The reference is appreciated.

That ability to mingle with different genres and retain their own signature sound is an impressive quality that adds a subtle depth to their music. “Nothing,” and “Icicles” get downright surfy with their reverberating guitars, groovy bass line, and a little crooning from Jacobson. “Dead Yet” plays on country, piping in with some rocking guitar riffs. An inspired folk mentality blends all the elements which gently aids each song.

Another of Big Piney’s great achievements is its impeccable pacing. The actual progression of tracks had a great deal of thought behind it and one should really listen to the album in it’s original order. Every note, every word, and every swell of music has a special meaning & purpose. That attention to detail is not lost on the kindred spirits who will let the music transport them to the band’s upstairs Chicago apartment. When their catchiest songs inevitably get caught in your head, like “Keep U Mine,” that warm fuzzy feeling of inside jokes with your best friends will radiate from your tapping feet.

Brother George have created a lifetime companion in their heartfelt, exposed, and beautiful debut album. Through their psychedelic-tinted glasses, we can look back on the good times and gaze down the winding road into the uncertain future. With its ebbing harmonies, ever-surprising guitar riffs, crashing cymbals, and stories of real people, Big Piney leaves you with an unshakable optimism. Songwriting like this proves that we are really not so different. Music like this says all those words stuck in our throats, so we might be brave enough to the next time. This is a great pocket album. Place these songs close to you, carry them wherever you go, and whatever situation or place you may be in, one of them will be the perfect score for your feelings.

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars!
- IMR Magazine


This article was published under our previous name Horshack.

Take four "dorky" guys in their 20s, place a wind organ, a lap steel, a guitar and drumsticks in their hands and you get mellow rockers Horshack.

Blame guitarist and vocalist Joe Pasterski, 22, for the band's name. Pasterski's luminous afro makes him look like a double for Arnold Horshack, a geeky character in the '70s sitcom "Welcome Back Kotter."

"Instead of going for coolest name we could go for, we went for the dorkiest," Pasterski said.

Bandmate and fellow songwriter Tory Dahlhoff chimed in: "We thought at one point we would change it, but we just haven't gotten around to it."

Don't let Dahlhoff's joking fool you. Dahlhoff, one of the original members of the band, has Horshack's original logo tattooed on his chest.

While band members of Horshack don't take themselves too seriously, it's a different story when it comes to their music.

"Music is not just entertainment to us, considering we've immersed our whole lives in it,"said Pasterski, who works as a waiter to pay the bills.

Over five years, this Belleville-based band has recorded two EPs, one LP and one music video and has performed countless gigs across the metro-east and St. Louis. Their latest EP titled, "Bear Eats Mouse on Tree" will be released today at The Ground Floor in Belleville, where they are performing.

The six tracks on the EP, released by Anomer records, were written by Pasterski and Dahlhoff.

All six tracks showcase the band's infused rock style.

In the "Deer Meets Mother, The Power of Love," you can hear influences from the Beatles. The song arcs several times with strong drums and guitars and an interesting mix of tempos. The song focuses on beautiful nature imagery, evoking feelings of love:

"I am the toad and you are the rose inside my room."

"Bad Andy" has a strong intro, with slightly melancholy and eerie undertones with happy intervals. A guitar set two minutes into song builds toward a strong guitar solo finish.

"Ronix," which was recorded live is sure to please rock fans. Toward the end of the track, the guitarists, vocalists, and drummer let loose.

The studio tracks were produced and egineered by Carter Mckee and Suburban Pro Studios. A full 12-track CD will be released around September.

Pasterski focuses a lot of his lyrics on the loss of nature. Dahlhoff writes about returning to a more laid back, less material existence.

And when it comes to the creating music the band members all weigh in.

"I would much rather create music by me, not by a room full of studio executives," said Bill Hudgins, a Clark Kent look-alike who manages a medical equipment company by day. Hudgins, 28, joined the band a year-ago put an end to a constantly revolving door of drummers. He's also a songwriter for another local band, Wake-Up Report.

"The way we're creating music is that it's something near and dear to us," Hudgins said. "Not someone coming to us and saying write me something that sells. We like to say that Tory and Joe write the songs and Neal and I make them great."

Neal, is the band's bass guitarist Neal "Francis" Neumann, an original band member.

Neal injected: "We imagineer the songs."

The band decided to add "Francis" to Nuemann's name because they thought Neal Nuemann didn't flow.

Hudgins: " We make music for ourselves. Ultimately, it's for us. At the end of the day if no one listens to it. I don't care."

Pasterski: "But I do like people liking it."

Their EP is available today for $5 at the Ground Floor in Belleville. Their next performance will be at the TOCO Music & Peace Festival Sept. 8 and 9. For more information on the band visit www.horshackmusic.com or myspace.com/horshack.

Contact reporter Aliana Ramos at aramos

Want to go?

When: 9 tonight; doors open at 8:30.

Where: The Ground Floor, 215 E. Main St. in Belleville.

Doors open at 8:30 p.m. and show starts at 9 p.m.

Admission: $5.

Other bands: Peter & the Wolf and Mahtpa Fans

Horshack fans can purchase Horshack's CD "Bear Eats Mouse In Tree" for $5.

- The Belleville News-Democrat


Discography

Big Piney LP (2012)
Piney EP (2012)

Photos

Bio

Name any lead-off track from a Chicago area band's album this year, and chances are it doesn't leap forth with the creativity, color or all-out chops of "So Many Arms To Hold Me," from Brother George's Big Piney. Opening with lush keyboard gurgles and stoic acoustic strums - sporting a perpetual optimism similar to The Zombies' classic, "This Will Be Our Year" - the song eventually gives way to staccato, yet polite guitar thrusts and a 4/4 stomp layered with the kinds of harmonies that would make Brian Wilson envious. It's the rare song that can break a local band wide open to the masses, while still remaining true to the simplicity and innocence of what a young rock band can be. Did I mention we're not even passed track one yet?

The time members have racked up in a wide range of genres - from The Dear Hunter's dramatic, dark post-hardcore to the folky, Pitchfork/Stereogum approved Ohtis - as all living together above a record store on Milwaukee Ave., have done Brother George's kaleidoscope of sound proud. Though a tag as vague as "pop/rock" is technically accurate, the results drummer Zane Ranney, bassist/vocalist Neal Neumann and guitarists/vocalists Sagan Jacobson and Ryan Culbertson get are more of a celebration of music as a whole, rather than misguided stabs at trying to appeal to all on purpose. British invasion, doo-wop, psychedelia, blue-eyed soul, alt-pop and an endless utility belt of fuzzy production choices, drastic rhythm changes and choir-boy vocals are all thrown in the pot, and no initial 30 seconds of a song can tell you where it'll be a minute later. Mid-album landmark "Nothing" pumps along with sunny, Shins-esque ornateness before laying into a mathy strut; ballads like "Sailor" and "Everything That's Happened" are equally as engaging, acting as intricate love letters to The Band, and not just excuses to slow down; jittery power-pop nuggets like "Icicles" and "Keep U Mine" are feverish jolts of top-notch songwriting. As Windy City Rock has put it, "they are the quintessential Chicago band that just won't quit."