Impostor Syndrome
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Impostor Syndrome


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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Great Pretender"

Impostor Syndrome has its roots planted somewhere in the days of early punk rock, coming across like a mix between Blondie and the Pretenders before they got big. That probably has a lot to do with the strong female lead vocals from Kristen Persinos, as her voice is absolutely captivating.

The songs themselves are rough around the edges both musically and sonically, but that only adds to the punkish appeal. Persinos seems right at home growling along with her overdriven guitar lines, so there's no need to try and pretty it up, even though she could probably croon well-structured pop songs sweetly if she wanted to. Something tells me that too much polish would probably put out the fire this New York-based trio is trying to set, and that would be a shame. With that, I think I'll turn this one up a little louder. - MISH MASH

"Impostor Syndrome Fresh Air"

Impostor Syndrome is a cagey NYC trio whose big hooks and sultry rhythms could easily draw comparisons to Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Blondie. Yet there's more than that on FRESH AIR, like the impenetrable NYC attitude which permeates through these four jagged pieces of pop elegance. Quirky without being inaccessible, tracks like "Should I?" sound like Olivia Newton John channeling The Runaways while the sinewy groove heard on "How Come?" shows this unit at its darkest and most melodic. Impostor Syndrome's latest disc offers their unique how to guide on the tips necessary to not only survive in the NYC music scene, but thrive creatively and build a distinct sound along the way. - 316 Productions

"The Village Voice Choices"

"Local Trio given to soaring Middle Eastern dark-metal modalities. Their demo EP's quite promising-if they come up with some tunes as unsinkable as Kristen Persinos's big, gothic voice, they could open for Lacuna Coil or the Gathering." - Chuck Eddy The Village Voice

"CD REVIEW: Impostor Syndrome - S/T EP"

Kicking off their self titled EP in three-chords and an attitude fashion, ripping through the entire 11 (or so) minutes with absolutely no sign of slowing down, Impostor Syndrome prove that New York's underground still knows how to rock. However, it's not all about the "straight forward" rock & roll. Never faltering, or losing intensity, Impostor Syndrome’s EP showcases three stellar tracks in the traditions of post-punk noise bands, slack-jawed indie rockers, and of Pixies-popularized dynamic structures.

Impassioned and kinetic, each track on the EP swells hauntingly, constantly nearing an explosive territory. At the precise moment that you would expect a crank in volume, Impostor Syndrome suddenly and unpredictably back away, only to launch their frantic assault moments later, after your expectations have passed. It's this sort of dynamic structure along with sharp, soaring vocals, hollow, driving guitars, plodding bass lines, and drums harnessing a tense groove, that makes Impostor Syndrome's work an intriguing listen. Each chord pulls you along as Kristen Persinos, lead vocalist, writer and guitarist, employs the beautiful and volatile qualities of her voice from minute to minute. She sings with the spirit of (one of my personal favourites) Cinder Block of Tilt. Able to go from a sweet, simple melody to a feisty, yet elegant, howl, Kristen's voice has a polished tone to it, strong and wild, but smooth and graceful. Her lyrics are both mysterious (“the One”) and straightforward (“I’m with Stupid”), but sometimes overshadowed, especially during the first few listens, by the initial power of the music.

The musicianship of Impostor Syndrome also can’t go overlooked. Their style of twisting, shifting, almost imbalanced music isn’t always easy to play. Playing it with any form of proficiency, with any sort of co-ordination, must be even more complicated. Steve Kerr (bass, background vocals), Kristen and Stu Damm (the drummer featured on the EP – Ross Kantor has since taken his place) don’t miss a beat. Their timing and chemistry is excellent, each of them aware of the next sonic step.

I’ve focused primarily on the more complexly structured aspects of the music, but Impostor Syndrome also know how to deliver a direct attack, and, to put it bluntly, know how to tear you a new one. The track “I’m with Stupid” is a fangs-out, punchy, sassy anthem to the guy who spends a little too much time sleeping on your couch. It’s almost the counterpart to “Eternal Fatalist” by the legendary uber-indie rockers The Lowest of The Low, which details a slacker who’s “butt’s been three days on [the] couch,” who’s “eaten [you] out of home and house,” and who “nearly drank up all of [your] beer.” “I’m with Stupid” is the moment where said slacker gets sonically removed from said couch. In the words of Kristen, “That Hungry-Man won’t cook itself.” “I’m with Stupid” is a thing of beauty, plain and simple.

All in all, Impostor Syndrome prove that they can rock in oh-so many ways. Brazen, passionate, talented and intriguing, their self-titled EP skillfully delivers distinctive songs laced with emotive energy. A demanding, but highly rewarding, listen, Impostor Syndrome’s EP is great, albeit complicated, rock & roll. - Muses Muse

"Impostor Syndrome - Lips"

Quality grungey indie rock from NYC. Strangely for a band of this ilk, Imposter Syndrome vocalist Kristen Persinos has actually taken the trouble to actually sing, rather than offer up the usual yelps, screams and moans we tend to get.

Title track 'Lips' is the pick of the bunch from this lot, and it's pretty obvious that it's the newest of the tracks (having been written a full two years after the remaining 3 songs). It's got the kind of Nightnurse/M.A.S.S. raw but tuneful feel, which I'm really getting into at the moment. 'Waiting' takes the pace down a little, a cracked torch song verse, before exploding into a chorus of great heaviosity, I know the quiet/loud thing's been done to death, but they still do it well. Final track 'The One' lets the side down a little, the vocals feel like they've just been manipulated to fit the track, rather than actually going with them, but it still gets away with it thanks to a glorious soaring chorus. - Kaytronika

"Impostor Syndrome ~ 3-track EP"

What’s so great about this sampler is Kristen Persino’s pure, wholesome-sounding voice. It’s like the cheerful announcer in a furniture-polish commercial suddenly stepped out of the TV, grabbed a guitar, and started fronting a cynical, driven guitar rock trio.

That contrast is what makes these three songs so interesting. The music is definitely dark. The group experiments with psychedelic, spacey sound effects that interweave with Persino’s dreamy crooning, and then they let the music rise into a black wave. The wave subsides, but we get the uncanny feeling that it’s just gathering strength. I like that on-edge feel that the band maintains throughout the CD. Persino’s voice may give the sound a sweet edge, but you just know something’s about to blow. -

"All right! An indie New York band!"

Impressive arty alt-rock in the vein of At the Drive In but with female vocals supplied by main songwriter Persinos, which are ethereal and rhapsodic yet powerfully impassioned. Impostor Syndrome is mature, artistic, and unpredictable, as they go from upbeat tempos ("I'm With Stupid") to slower, more dark and sombre melodies ("Waiting" and "The One"). - Score! Music Magazine

"Impostor Syndrome"

I've never really been very appreciative of female fronted bands, or female vocals, but Impostor Syndrome may be one of the only exceptions in my books. I can't get enough of this 4 track album. I downloaded some of their tracks off their website, and listened to them repeatedly for weeks until the album came in the mail. I still have a hard time laying this album aside to listen to all the other CDs I need to listen to in order to review. All four tracks "Lips," "I'm With Stupid," "Waiting," and "The One" constantly get stuck in my head each and every time I put this disc into my CD player! I don't own too many albums that have this much of a catch and hook appeal. Impostor Syndrome's music is very upbeat and has a pop meets punk vibe to it, with almost a space rock overtone. Even their slow tracks have a very rocky edge. I think this band will be a great mainstream show stopper. I think they're amazing, and hopefully those of you that check them out will think so as well. -


The focus of this band is Kristen Persinos. She sings with emotion and she plays guitar well. Kristen also wrote most of these songs. The songs could be about a specific relationship. “Lips” opens with a pop intro. Then the guitars get stronger and start to rock. Rock not metal. Kristen says her music contains variations on mainstream rock. Having listened to this CD, I agree. The song is about an intense moment. She's talking, but she can't quite believe she's going ahead and said these things, she wanted to say. Even more surprisingly, he's listening. “I’m With Stupid” is faster. It rocks hardest of the four songs on IMPOSTOR SYNDROME's CD. It’s about laziness. A man, who doesn't want to get going. Who makes no effort to improve things for himself. There's a good point about watching old television shows years later. Kristen says "Actors who look so young. You know what? They’re all dead". I've thought about that, too. ”The One” is slow and sparse. It could be the ballad. It’s about looking back. You don't always like what you see. “Waiting” has several short terse notes along with slow verses. It tells about waiting for the next thing to happen. Kristen doesn't need to worry about being an impostor. This proves, she's for real. -

"New York possibilities you might have overlooked"

Alternative rock trio Impostor Syndrome is by far one of the more interesting NYC bands I've had the pleasure to see live. Imposter Syndrome plays stripped-down hard rock, a driving garage-band sound that is surprisingly well-complemented by the gothicky rock opera vocals of frontwoman Kristen Persinos.

Wry, wrathful and often self-deprecating, Persinos is no shrinking wallflower -- this diminutive blonde pounds the stage with passionate abandon, whether she's belting into the mike like a caberet diva or dropping down into a creepy whisper. And yet for all that, she's also refreshingly genuine -- between songs, she often seems endearingly ill-at-ease, as if slightly embarrassed to find herself on a stage.

The kicker is that Persinos is also funny, with witty songs like "I'm with Stupid," in which she admonishes a soon-to-be-ex boyfriend "Don't you think it's time to get off that couch?/ You know, that Hungry Man won't cook itself..."

Persinos plays a mean guitar, too, and her bandmates -- bassist Ken Nakano (also of Wussy) and drummer Ross Kantor play a tight, aggressive rhythm section that never sinks into the background.
- Tyler Gore’s Strange Attractor


Fresh Air 2006
Lips 2003
3 song ep 2001

Streaming on myspace and web site


Feeling a bit camera shy


On 11/11/06, Kristen Persinos wrote to Craig Rogers:

“Craig, help me with this bio before I pull out all of my hair. The point is to say:

1. Impostor Syndrome is a rock trio from the Lower East Side in New York City.
2. Impostor Syndrome is different, yet accessible.
3. Impostor Syndrome is unpredictable and dynamic.
4. Impostor Syndrome is not sugar coated.
5. Kristen can actually sing and the lyrics don’t suck.
6. Kristen can actually play guitar while singing!
7. Ken is a monster on bass.
8. Craig has a brain and can count past 4.
9. Craig and Ken play so well together, they should just get a room and get it over with.
10. Been compared to early Pretenders, PJ Harvey, but we really don’t sound like either.

Am I missing anything?”

On 11/11/06, Craig Rogers wrote to Kristen Persinos:

“That’s everything. Now stop obsessing”