Gig Seeker Pro


Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Rock Hard Rock




"Cyrenic-Selective Memory"

Few bands can release multiple albums these days, especially as an independent artist. It's even harder for bands to "re-release" music, and have it go over well. There has been an exception to all of this, and it is the band, Cyrenic. Their latest release (January 22nd), "Selective Memory", is eloquent and brilliant. It features ten tracks, which includes 2 Brand New songs!! The remaining 8 "re-worked" songs are masterfully done. Take "Let it Burn", for example. The song's previous incarnation, featured the female power of Adria Zuckerman within the depths of the track. "Selective Memory" has the same track, polished up a bit, and even now without Adria's vocals on it, the song sounds more haunting, more diverse than ever before! "The End", which leads off the new album, is a rocker no doubt!! It drives your amp inside your heart up, and leads you into this incredible album. I started to bang my own head, seconds after the track The first single released from this album is titled, "The Whites of Your Lies". Yes, this track was on a previous release, but my friends, it was not as good as it is now, on "Selective Memory", not even close. "Lullaby" is probably the most brilliant track on the record. In my opinion, this song flows so well, as if it's leading us into temptation to tear into more Cyrenic music!! Other featured tracks, such as "Wait of the World", "Gravity", and "Negative Space" continue our journey through this beauty-laced album. The title track, "Selective Memory", blends their approach with edge, and touching grace at the same time. "Timeless" is, if there are any, my least favorite track. However, do not mistake this as a weakness, because this release has none. "Timeless" is still part of the diversity within the flow of this record, and has a powerful message within it's parts. Of course, I have to admit my favorite track, and it is titled, "Shattered". In fact, it's on the I-Pod right now! The beat has an edge to it, driving me to move my body with this album, yet again, and the hook is incredibly well-written. To conclude, I just would like to thank Brian Zuckerman and the gang for releasing "real" music, both lyrically and passionately. This is an incredible piece of work, and I definitely recommend you pick this up, if not on their website (see link below), then hit up I-tunes. - The Vacant: Music You Must Own

"The Rising Five: Edition #20: Season 2 Finale"

Cyrenic – The Whites of Your Lies: One of the most talked about bands of the year here on EMURG is Baltimore band Cyrenic. Originally a one man band, Brian Zuckerman formed an ensemble that released Dying to Live last year and intends to put out an album on New Year’s Day 2013 called Selective Memory that features songs from Cyrenic’s one man band days re-recorded for added awesomeness. This song was the title track of an album that was released on New Year’s Day 2008. Poetic justice. -

"Review: Cyrenic- A New Meaning"

Overview: Cyrenic is a one-man wrecking crew, its puppet-master a Frederick, Maryland based dude named Brian Zuckerman. Zuckerman’s first go under his alter-ego Cyrenic came just before Christmas 2007 when he unveiled an eleven song opus carrying the title ‘The Whites of Our Lies‘. Brian was the omnipotent creative force behind the album, credited with 100 percent of the songwriting and playing of instruments. Z-Man rode the high of ‘The Whites of Our Lies‘ for awhile before parking his ass in the studio to start album two. After several months of meticulous crafting, Mr. Zuckerman will unleash the second chapter of Cyrenic on April 7 in the form of a ten track joint called ‘A New Meaning‘.

The Good: ‘A New Meaning‘ is a fitting way to describe Cyrenic’s new affair, as all ten tunes are creative and uber-cognizant cathartic missives straight from the soul of Brian Zuckerman. The ghostly, “Broken Wings”-esque intro to “Lullaby” is crazy enveloping, as the song builds patiently through dashing and satisfying dynamics. Zuckerman’s hair-raising, heartfelt coos add heaps of warmth to “Lullaby”, a massive track and a ballsy way to start ‘A New Meaning‘. “Slow Emotion” is soaked in a trifecta of surging, well-implemented guitars, hulky drums, and vehement vocals that drenches the song with color and helps it flow effortlessly. “Let It Burn” is a palpable harness of two separate dichotomies-mood and vocal. The song treads equally between brooding and volatile and radiant and lucid dispositions, while Zuckerman’s cavernous cries are admirably embellished by the endearing echoes of a female passerby. A gentle giant, “Abyss” sports a rather lofty and imposing landscape; in the end however, “Abyss” pours on the comfort and the serenity the way Paula Dean pours on the butter. “Wait of the World” is lively and titillating, the first real rock juggernaut of ‘A New Meaning‘ with a real emotive push by Brian Zuckerman. “Cutting Through the Knife” is Cyrenic’s eclectic king, chockfull of as much thunder as there is grace while nimbly frisking from punchy to delicate at all the right moments. “Surreal” is notably enterprising and venturesome, yet careful enough not to trample the sensual, provocative identity of its rhetoric. The call-and-response male-female vocal play adds a neat façade to “Surreal”, whose outro might tickle superfans of GNR’s “November Rain”. ‘A New Meaning‘ has its black sheep in “Shattered” but boy oh boy this track is no outsider. Just as its billing suggests, “Shattered” is a no frills all-the-way rock scorcher that really livens up the back-end of the record. Zuckerman’s last run is “Barely Alive”, armed with enough unbridled conviction from the Cyrenic brainchild to completely numb you. Thorough and groundbreaking, “Barely Alive” boasts the album’s best overall drum sound, while Sir Zuckerman spits with an arsenal of inflection.

Deserving its own piece of recognition is “To Have and To Hold”. Wow. That’s all you’ll be able to say after hearing Zuckerman make sweet, sweet love to his piano on this blissful 4 minute journey. To call “To Have and To Hold” evocative and honest would be gross understatements as its spine-tingling energy and honest spirit take your breath away.

The Bad: ‘A New Meaning‘ has two specific instances of peer plagiarism. The first is the riff of “Slow Emotion”, which blatantly resembles “Firefly” by Breaking Benjamin. The second is the riff of “Shattered”, an obvious recycling of Shinedown’s “In Memory”. “Abyss” needs to peak sooner rather than, well, not at all like it does-er-doesn’t do. “Wait of the World” absolutely owns until its outro, which completely maims the song with brittle screams that do nothing more than unlock you from its healthy groove. The overall recording quality of ‘A New Meaning‘ leaves much to be desired, as it often sounds like Brian Zuckerman simply sang and played straight into his computer’s built-in microphone. Throw on a pair of headphones and you’ll quickly pick-up on the jangly crackles littering the mix. What’s saddest about the B-rate mix is how much it hinders ‘A New Meaning‘ from breathing and coming alive; quite frankly, this makes ‘A New Meaning‘ sound starved, even during its most epic moments. After a few listens, many of these tracks start to feel like they’re aimlessly wandering within themselves. Luckily, all ten intros and outros are strong enough anchors to help you keep one foot in reality at all times. However, ‘A New Meaning‘ more often than not loses focus and becomes entrenched in its own starry-eyed, soul-searching lullaby, shutting the listener out until it decides to come back down from the clouds.

Bottomline: Brian Zuckerman is one talented fellow as Cyrenic’s ‘A New Meaning‘ pays healthy testament. There’s more emotionally-charged sentiment and raw dreaminess here than on The Bachelor, a refreshing exploratory rock expose. Sure, ‘A New Meaning‘ has a pocket of flaws, and sure, these flaws are easily discernable. - Tunelab

"CYRENIC - Dying to Live"

Cyrenic, originating in Maryland, is the offspring of one man: Brian Zuckerman. Following the release of his second album, “A New Meaning,”? Brian formed a five-piece band to join him live on stage. With all the layering he creates musically, he almost has to get help performing.

Cyrenic’s album Dying To Live starts out with “The Mind Leading The Mind” which has such a forceful intro it could blow your hair back. Beginning with midi undertones, it surprises you once the bass hits. It’s almost like he was building a sandwich using each instrument as a piece of meat all one-by-one; rhythm guitars, then drums, bass, and lead guitar to top it all off. The title “The Mind Leading The Mind”? is a great play on words, like “the blind leading the blind.”? I had to listen to the bridge a few times because I wish it lasted longer. It’s such a mean breakdown, cutting out for a split second in its madness just in time for him to say “shh.”? Such a perfect little twist.

Track two, “Scars Align,”? made me appreciate the artistry of percussion more than usual. The tightness of the double bass with the guitars is fantastic. With the simultaneous cymbal crashes I can imagine in my head the drum stick spins for live shows. These drums riffs are something that make you want to scream, tense up, and clench your fists. Exactly the kind of feeling that belongs to heavy rock.

“A Killer To Save Us”? and “Nothing To Give”? (songs 3 and 4) slow things down without bringing your adrenaline rush to a complete halt. The grittiness stays, but the emotions get deeper and the guitar solos speak to you in a sweeter way. Their approach to keep the same overall feel to this album was done remarkably well.

One thing I love about Cyrenic is Brian’s vocal ability. When listening and reviewing their last album, I was more than impressed with his falsetto. I again got the ear candy I was hoping for. During “Halo”?, around the :54 mark, you’ll understand what I’m talking about. The prime example hits at the 3:26 mark on “Fighting Destiny.”? Not many male vocalists, or even rock vocalists for that matter, can go falsetto and sound good while doing it. Brian’s capabilities are dramatic, influential, and inspiring.

“Built Of Sand”? begins with a somewhat happy/pop guitar solo, but in a split second the song transitions into something dark. Just when you think it’s going to stay that way, it goes back to happy, even uplifting. The contrast in this song really doesn’t sound so great written down, but once you hear the actual chord progressions, it’s really unique. Honestly, it’s one of the coolest ways I’ve heard a song written and composed in a long time. Because of that, it’s my favorite song on this album, hands down.

A very eerie keyboard intro hits towards the end of the album on track 8, “The Wolf Who Cried Boy.”? A cool change-up that’s really captivating. I found myself hitting the rewind button on this one too.

The further I got into listening to this album, I noticed it’s a bit heavier compared to their last. In my opinion, the rawness and intensity fits Brian’s voice like a glove. “Dying To Live”? shows that Cyrenic continues to grow bigger in their sound from one song to the next. This is one talented band to keep an eye out for. - EMURG

"The Mixtape: Cyrenic-Dying to Live"

Cyrenic isn’t just one of those local bands who we raise lighters for because we’ve walked the very avenues they mention within the verses of their songs. No, when DC denizens throw their Bics up in the sky at a Cyrenic show, it’s for a much greater reason: the boys of Cyrenic are good. Damn good.

And their fourth album, Dying To Live, shows the band coming off a year-long, supercharged tour swinging for the fences. The band has matured and become more confident and this shows in the ten tracks of remarkable rock that make up Dying To Live. Even new member, drummer Keith Periera, charges out of the starting gate of “The Mind Leading The Mind” wailing on his drums so hard that you’d swear they said something about his mother. It’s this unruly energy, this sheer force that drives the album to greatness right at Go.

That’s something that you can’t help but love about Cyrenic, too: that they’re still willing to rock out so hard that you’d think you warped back into the 1990’s when the genre still actually had a set of balls, before the Snow Patrols and Death Cab For Cuties became the status quo of an emasculated music scene. They successfully evoke the sort of spirit that make bands like Cold, Evans Blue and 10 Years great.

But don’t get me wrong and think that Cyrenic is all muscle with nothing more to offer. At times, the band takes a break from their amplified minor chords and heavy hitting anthems to show a deeper side: raw emotion bleeding out from lead Brian Zuckerman’s voice while guitarists Don Pastorius and Kevin Holmes take pause to watch their man pour his heart out onto the track. As the album comes off an energetic, guitar solo-led “A Killer To Save Us,” it seamlessly morphs right into the soft, piano-backed melodious tune, “Nothing To Give,” and just as the listener has come to think that “The Wolf Who Cried Boy” is a softer instrumental piece, the boys of Cyrenic intervene and give it their all, the aggressive growls of their guitars taking hold of your throat and refusing to let go until the track has ended. It’s this depth, this duality of feelings that makes Dying To Live one of their strongest albums to date. (It should be noted that this difficult balance is something Cyrenic has learned to perfect over the years as shown in their accoustic album, Contrast.)

Lyrically, Zuckerman is still penning thoughtful songs that are sure to weigh heavily on the hearts of their fans as his haunting voice reaches out from the speakers and drives his words home. “Are you dreaming aloud?/Are you falling awake?/Is there a second chance you won’t have to take?” he croons in “Nothing To Give.” And, in one of my personal favorites, the romantically reverent “Embers,” he sings “Tell me one more lie/Tell the sky the storm is over/I don’t want to watch the embers die” as he lovingly pleas for a second chance, fully knowing that there is no such option available. It’s brilliantly tragic and conflicted. It’s what Zuckerman does best.

By the end of Dying To Live, you’re certain to want to press repeat and start it all again. Or maybe you’d prefer to support the local band even more by coming out and seeing their performance this Saturday at Recher Theater. It’s their album release party and as a fan who has seen them several times, I promise you won’t be let down. -


Still working on that hot first release.



CYRENIC, presents a powerful example of what music can be when an artist has the drive--and the talent--to bring their own visions to life, uninterrupted. This is because lead singer and founder Brian Zuckerman leads aspect of the music, from composing the powerful instrumentals that drive each song to writing lyrics, performing vocals, guitars, bass, keyboards and programming and producing the tracks. Such total mastery gives the band the freedom to produce songs that perfectly reflect the overall "CYRENIC" vision every time--and the resulting music is a powerful manifestation of that; each song possesses a unity and clarity of tone that can only come from an artist who has owned every single piece of the track, from concept to execution.

CYRENIC combines intense beats, driving riffs, lush soundscapes and soaring melodies with raw, sometimes earnest vocals. The resulting sound is unique but will appeal to fans of both melodic and hard rock.

Following the release of "A New Meaning", CYRENIC's second album, Brian formed a 4 piece live band to bring the music to the live stage and beyond.

Since forming the live band, CYRENIC has vaulted to the top of the Baltimore/DC music scene gaining an instant loyal following and playing the best venues the area has to offer including Recher Theater, Bourbon Street, The Sonar, Rams Head Live, The Ottobar, Baltimore Soundstage, The Fillmore-Silver Spring, the House of Rock and Washington D.C.'s legendary 9:30 Club.

CYRENIC has shared the stage with countless national touring bands, to include Nonpoint, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Smile Empty Soul, Evans Blue, The Pretty Reckless, and Burn Halo.

In addition, CYRENIC's music has been featured on several Baltimore-Washington area radio stations, to include 98Rock, 97.5 HFS and 101.5 BobRocks.