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New York City, New York, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

New York City, New York, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Rock Alternative


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Isadora @ Union Pool

Brooklyn, New York, United States

Brooklyn, New York, United States

Isadora @ Brooklyn Bowl

Brooklyn, New York, United States

Brooklyn, New York, United States

Isadora @ Rough Trade NYC

New York, New York, United States

New York, New York, United States



Isadora are back for the first time since the release of their critically acclaimed self-titled debut EP. The bands new EP, entitled “Predators” features 5 new songs recorded with Andrew Oedel and Ron Shaffer and finds the band in arguably their best form we’ve heard to date.
Click play below to listen to “Predators” in full:

The band, which began as a duo in 2012, now sport a full 5-piece lineup that includes none other than Aaron, Nick, and Jesse (formerly of The Yes Way), Joshua Rouah and Ian Mellencamp (nephew of legendary roots rocker John Mellencamp) on bass; with influences ranging from David Bowie to Beck, to The Beatles – all with a modern 2014 feel that only Isadora can deliver. Stay tuned for the bands upcoming Session to catch a glimpse of the band performing songs off “Predators” and more inside their Brooklyn studio! - Last FM

Isadora is a Brooklyn quintet, born in 2012. The band began as a duo, writing dreamy, melodic pop tunes inspired by Andrew Bird’s early Mysterious Production of Eggs.

The lineup grew and shrank, eventually swelling into its five-piece formation. The evolution in the lineup has inspired an evolution as well in the band’s sound.

Isadora has arrived at a rich, textured sound, sometimes going purely on feel and sometimes highly composed. - 90.5. WBJB

Isadora will be in residence at Pianos, 158 Ludlow St. on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, appearing every Wednesday in September.

They will also have an EP release show on October 4th, at Rough Trade, 64 N 9th St, in Brooklyn, The official release date for their new EP Predator is October 7th.

Isadora is a 5 piece band that came together in 2012. Originally a duo, their line-up now includes singer/guitarist Aaron Mendelsohn, Ian Mellencamp (nephew of famed roots rocker John Mellencamp), on bass, Nick Burleigh, lead guitar and violin, drummer Jesse Bilotta, and keyboardist Josh Rouah. The band cites David Bowie, The Beatles, and Beck as songwriting influences.

The evolution in their lineup also inspired an evolution in the band's direction musically. Isadora has arrived at a rich, textured sound, sometimes going purely on feel and sometimes highly composed. They have been described as a hybrid between Pavement, early Radiohead and Nirvana. -

sadora, Brooklyn’s quintet of 90s-style alt-rockers, is back with a new single. The first sonic slice of their full length, “Come On Back” is a feel-good rock track with a guitar-heavy sound that maintains the quality of music we’ve come to expect from them. Creeping in on soft guitar licks and a gentle strum of the bass, the song glides leisurely to the standout chorus that amps those mellowed guitars into overdrive and adds layers of vocals gruffly repeating the song’s title. Refreshingly not another love song about a getting back the girl, “Come On Back” is speaking to “what it takes to keep the pesky realities of the internet age out of the creative path,” a sentiment highlighted by the bridge of frenetic, whirling guitars that slowly winds itself back into organization. A promising sign of an excellent album to come, we’re so happy to provide you with a first listen of “Come On Back”. Hear this track and more live during Isadora’s single launch at Mercury Lounge on July 23rd with Nashville electro-rockers, Vinyl Thief. - Wild Honey Pie

Next up was Isadora, Brooklyn based quintet comprised of Aaron Mendelsohn (vocals, guitar), Ian Mellencamp (bass, vocals), Jesse Bilotta (drums), Nick Burleigh (guitar, violin) and Joshua Rouah (keyboards, vocals). It was clear from the moment the band started playing that everyone was into the atmospheric and at times, psychedelic rock sound. Aaron, Ian and Joshua also brought a great mix of harmonies to several tracks including “Barcelona,” and their closing track “Grass,” which had a particularly trippy 60’s vibe. -

Just in time for the release of their debut EP, fivesome Isadora stole this week’s Artist of the Week crown with a ferocity you rarely get from beleaguered Brooklyn beardos. Their self-titled EP is also a neat surprise, mixing the mad instrumentation Andrew Bird, Weezer rock and Ben Folds sincerity. They’re basically everything good about drama-rock from the late 90s and early 2000s, topped with real music skills and major drive.

In other words, we love these guys, and we’re glad that they won, so check them out.

Here’s the tell-all interview you’ve been waiting for!

Why the name Isadora?

While looking for a name in street signs and homonyms, we found Isadora hanging on the wall at the bar we always go to after shows and rehearsals. There was a painting of a Spanish girl holding a guitar, and we named her Isadora. There’s something mysterious and beautiful about it, and we all liked it for our name.

Getting noticed in Brooklyn is tough. What frustrations have you faced as a band – and what makes it all worth it?

It’s easy to get lost among all the quality music in this area. Yeah. It’s cool though, being in Brooklyn, being surrounded by our friends and everyone coming to the shows…and getting to share our songs in all the amazing rooms filled with these people.

The EP’s out! Do you feel like you just gave birth?

It looks like a chicken just gave a birth. Ha, no, but this record has been long in the works and it’s exciting to get it on vinyl. It’s nice to know that we’re gonna be able to finally share this.

The EP has been enlisted to be on a film soundtrack of your choosing. Which film, and/or which scene?

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory – start the album as soon as Willy Wonka first appears on screen.

Who are you listening to these days?

Tame Impala, Leonard Cohen, Brian Eno.

Who are some of your all-time music heros.

Radiohead, David Bowie, Kurt Cobain. - MTV Iggy

Brooklyn’s Isadora is out to rock you—in a totally melodic kinda way. Today we’re hosting the download premiere of new track “On the Rights,” a slow-building track that gradually adds the grit with additional drums and a guitar flourish. Check it out below. If you like what you hear stay tuned, Isadora’s debut EP drops February 19. - On The Rights Single Premiere

Isadora's debut single, "On The Rights," begins almost as a familiar lullaby—but as the pounding drum and exhilarating guitar riff picks up by the first verse, it's clear these indie rockers have a different intention entirely. We fell for Isadora when they were known as The Yes Way—these days, they're still very much a Brooklyn-based quintet with a roster that includes Aaron Mendelsohn (vocals, guitar), Ian Mellencamp (bass, vocals), Jesse Bilotta (drums, vocals), Nick Burleigh (guitar, violin), and Josh Rouah (keyboard, guitar, vocals). Don't let the presence of a classically trained violinist confuse you; Isadora's melodies have a distinct '90s alt-rock influence and even a touch of punk. - Interview Magazine

Isadora just dropped their new EP this Tuesday and in celebration of how absolutely gorgeously creepy their sound is, they've allowed me the penis pleasure of giving away one of the bonus singles, titled 21 1/2. If you remember the video correctly, this is the song I fawned over for almost a fucking fortnight because of how eerily comforting the whole thing was.

Having spent a little time with the EP, I can say with sincerity that these muthafuckers are not afraid of taking a sound you'd expect and turning it on its ass. shit is zagging when you expected it to zig bro. Take the track Barcelona for instance, just after you're certain you're going to be bopping along the road with a happy go lucky type steeze in yer jeans, these guys get creepy and all of a sudden you're decapitating postal workers.

Isadora make me uncomfortable in one of the best ways (it's in my pants bro). They sound like how the 90s sound in my memories, taking the Toadies and Nirvana and giving them a makeover that includes being hypnotized by the Beach Boys and Lyle Lovett albums.

Seriously, these guys are the fucking balls.

I need more time with the EP to be sure I'm not just making all of this up, as I realized the EP is a grower not a shower.

Penis humor.


Williamsburg, Brooklyn. A place, where thousands of musicians produce and play, where the quality of output is so intense that regular citizens get spoiled everyday. When I moved from Brooklyn to Berlin four years ago, it was the music and that buzz I missed the most. Especially the sound of those who stand out, such as Isadora. Bittersweet rock music. With songwriting so elegantly put, melancholic and raw-voiced at the same time. Influenced by Tame Impala, Nick Drake and Kurt Vile. Read about lead singer Aaron Mendelsohn insights into Brooklyns music scene and about how drummer Jesse did not die in their last music video.

Also, watch out for Isadoras self titled first EP – ready, hot and dropping on 19. of February on iTunes. And if you live in the NYC, don’t miss their release show at Glasslands Feb 22. YOLO!

PDC: You changed your name from „The Yes Way“ to „Isadora“. What is different for you now, what changed except for the band name?

Aaron: We added a new bassist and keyboard player/singer – they both sing actually. The energy of the project, from the new people and from having more voices, is a totally different thing. We’ve come so far away from where The Yes Way had started that it seemed the only thing tying us to the name and what it had represented was the name itself.

PDC: Why the name Isadora, what does it mean to you?

Aaron: It’s a tough one to nail down. It was a picture on the wall of the bar near our practice space – Josh (keyboards) said she looked like she’d be an Isadora. We all got behind it as a band name really quickly. There’s a certain vibe that comes across from just the look and sound of the word, and we think the vibe of the music we play aligns well with that.

PDC: We are in love with the song “21 ½”. What is it about and where did you get your idea for the song?

Aaron: I was listening to a lot of Nick Drake when I wrote the basic guitar line and words, so on a musical level, there’s that.
I’d been involved with a girl and she lived 21 1/2 King Street – which is one above prince and two above spring, as the lyrics go. I’m just trying to paint a picture of a certain evening there by her place, really. I’ll leave the details up to the listener’s interpretation.

PDC: We must admit, we were pretty creeped out but also impressed by the video to “Falter“. What is Falter all about and why this sadistic video?

Aaron: We put the video in the hands of the director, and were absolutely in love with his concept. It’s difficult to shock people these days, and that is a challenge that appeals to us. The song is an examination of how fragile things can be in a new relationship in the modern world. We understand that our innocence is lost but we refuse the notion that we aren’t going to have something pure and beautiful.

PDC: Did Jesse suffer a lot during the making of?

Aaron: Oh, boy. Yes. I think he scarred. But he didn’t really die at the end. That was just special effects.

PDC: Do you find it hard, to compete with so many other bands in Brooklyn?

Aaron: It can be hard to rise above in such a saturated environment, but it would probably be harder for us to be doing it anywhere else. The city is such an inspiring place to be and I have no idea what our music would even sound like it if we were anywhere else.

PDC: What is your favorite venue to listen to live music in Brooklyn and why?

Aaron: Glasslands and Union Pool are probably tied for my number 1. Both places have so much character and they also tend to get the acts that I’m looking to see.

PDC: Aaron, I assume you still write a lot of songs yourself. How to you get into the song writing mode?

Aaron: So many different ways. I like to put myself in the rehearsal space and just play and play until something feels worth repeating. This is how I’ll arrive at chords and guitar parts a lot of the time. The lyric writing is usually something I do separately and something I’ll put more time into editing on my own.
We do write together a lot as well. I feel pretty good about bringing something that’s incomplete to the band and seeing where we take it from there as a group. I’ve learned that songs often turn out better when I look for collaboration before trying to complete an idea.

PDC: Which musicians inspire you as Isadora currently?

Aaron: Tame Impala, Zulu Winter.

PDC: Who was your musical childhood hero?

Aaron: John Lennon.

PDC: Which Brooklyn newcomer band can you recommend?

Aaron: Foxygen.

PDC: Which question did you always want to be asked as a band and what is the answer to it?

Aaron: Question: What chord is that? Answer: Usually D.

PDC: When will you come to Berlin?

Aaron: ASAP. Is that an invitation?


Thank you dear Aaron Mendelssohn, lead singer of Isadora, for making the time for this interview.

Btw – isn’t this just the most adorable album cover? - Pony Dance Clyde

New York indie band Isadora were brought to my attention this week and after hearing their debut single On The Rights, I requested to hear more. Their self-titled EP is out next month and it’s an awesome listen. Although they’re a very new band, they’ve already received a lot of attention in their home city and been featured in Magnet Magazine, US Interview Magazine and Under The Radar, due to their melodic bluesy indie.

Comprising of vocalist and guitarist Andrew Mendelsohn, bassist Ian Mellencamp, drummer Jesse Bilotta, guitarist and violinist Nick Burleigh and keyboardist Josh Rouah, they’re a multi-textural, multi-instrumental five-piece writing tracks with so many twists and turns, you’ll get completely lost in their dreamy pop-rock.

isadora1On The Rights opens the EP and the chilled intro tricks you into thinking it will be a calming number but by the centre of the track, you’re into a retro rock ‘n’ roll guitar and a song that has lots of big hit potential. Unexpectedness is what Isadora thrive on and it’s so refreshing to discover a band who still release original, unpredictable music.

Barcelona, which is a long way from its Freddie Mercury name-sake, incorporates the keyboard with the bass and drums in an expert manner. The indie drawl floats over the top as the instruments take centre-stage, resulting in an interesting ditty that shows all aspects of Isadora’s sound. Using the simple piano of the keyboard and the twangs of their rock sound, they’re certainly distinguishing themselves from the rest of their genre.

Falter has a definite jazz edge to it with the riff dancing to the beat. The spaced out vocals allow it to take on a dream-like form with the harmonies adding to the surreal effect. With things amping up in the instrumental, it’s the guitars that once again give it that oomph, which propels it into Handless, another spaced-out track.

More drum-based with a tribal feel to it, Handless is the track that is most like British indie. The instruments take a breather, as the vocals and harmonies become more prominent. A story-telling theme seems to be at play and it shows yet another side to this young but clearly talented band. Continuing the theme of slower tracks for the remainder of the EP, they wind down the record perfectly.

Liar has a slow acoustic opening with a lonely haunting vocal. Despite being very eerie, it’s soothing and could act as an adult lullaby, while the guitars provide all of the rise and fall it needs. A little bit of grit appears towards the end, when the alternative fuzz kicks in but it eventually fades and reverts back to the sway of the acoustic beginning, completing a full circle.

Ending on Mood Is A Bird, where we finally get a clue as to the significance of the EP artwork, shows us their many dimensions once again. It’s a slow, thoughtful hipster ballad with a soft keyboard and drum, whispering through the song. The arrival of the violin transports us to a nineteenth century, aristocratic ball, producing images of grandeur and elegance. Quirky and dainty, it ends on a tinkling musicbox sound and closes the EP with a click.

Isadora will no doubt take you on a magical, mystical journey through their many facets and perhaps inspire and entertain weird and wonderful ideas. The best way to really understand it is to just go along with it and see where you end up. - Show Me Something Different

Brooklyn quintet Isadora identify the early work of Andrew Bird as one of their key influences and inspirations, and that's easy to hear in their confident and diverse melodies. There's many elements to Isadora's sound that are profoundly non-Andrew-Bird-esque: where Bird's music feels meticulous and thematic, Isadora's is more direct and less polished. The over-all feel is one more reflective of a rock and roll band and less of a contemporary folk minstrel.

The two songs that Isadora has released bear this out, with over-arching themes comparable to any number of indie-rock artists, but executed uniquely and confidently. One of those two, "On the Rights", is available below.

Today, premiering exclusively on EARMILK, Isadora have just released the video for their track "Falter". The groups drummer, Jesse Bilotta, had this to say about the shooting the video:

"Real wax was dripped on my chest during the Dom torches Scene. The camera was not rolling on take one! I had to rip all the wax out and start over. Before we started shooting I didn't know that I was going to strip down to my skivvies, I didn't wear boxers with a button up front. All the running scenes were shot multiple times due to the surprise guest popping into the shot. I got really sick of Fanta after the shooting of the first scene in the video."

Isadora's first EP is set for release on February 19th, and for those of you in NYC, be sure to check them out at Union Pool in Brooklyn on 12/6. You can find the video, along with links to learn more about Isadora below. Enjoy! - Earmilk


Predators EP  released 10/10/2014



Isadora is a Brooklyn based quintet, born in 2012.

Aaron Mendelsohn - vocals, guitar
Ian Mellencamp - bass, vocals
Jesse Bilotta - drums, vocals
Nick Burleigh - guitar, violin
Josh Rouah - keyboards, guitar, vocals

Band Members