New Shack
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New Shack

Provo, Utah, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Provo, Utah, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Pop Synth




"New Shack Video Is Cherry"

If you are looking for something different and a little outlandish, but still hits on every one of the key points that makes pop music great, then be sure to check out “Cherry” by New Shack. The Provo, UT duo, consisting of Cat Leavy and Eric Robertson, have developed an interesting new wave, synth-pop style that incorporates their love for vague, multi-meaning lyrics and simple, yet layered, retro-synths with instrumentation that is twisted and wonky. If that was not enough, add in Cat Leavy’s youthful, even childlike, vocals to the poetic, honest lyrics and the song is complete.

The video is, according to the YouTube description, was inspired by famed French queen, Marie Antoinette. “It deals in themes of delusions of grandeur and the imminent crash that follows. It’s also a play on the relationship between childhood and adulthood – “cherry on top” would have a different meaning in a childhood setting vs. an adult setting. As always, my lyrics contain multiple entendres and I prefer to keep some of the meaning purposefully vague.”

The duo, both working producers, generally work independent of one another, with Leavy spending a majority of her time in Germany and Robertson in the Utah area. In a way, it allows the pair to work virtually. And while that may not play too much into the unique sound they have designed, it does show how seamlessly they work together to creating music from across the world.

With “Cherry”, the second single in 2018, the fourth EP in New Shack‘s musical quiver is surely on the horizon and is expected to be released early in 2018. While we wait for the rest of the EP to be announced, check out the new single, “Cherry”, by New Shack on YouTube below. Also, do not forget to pick up the song on iTunes now! - Lemonade Magazine

"Popsugar Culture Interview"

GC: So, New Shack. What is sex?

New Shack: Sex is an individual thing, and you get to define it however feels comfortable and consensual to you. In a time when sexuality is more fluid (and also cybernetic!), it makes sense that its definition is more abstract.

GC: Do you think it's true that millennials simply don't place as high of an importance factor on sex?

NS: Maybe "importance" isn't really the right word here. Millennials don't feel the same stigmas around sex, which makes them treat sex as a normal part of their lives. It's not that it's less important, maybe just more normal.

GC: Why do you think that is?

NS: Because we're not as ashamed to talk about sex and connect with people on that level. Shame is totally still at play, especially if you're coming to terms with sexuality outside of hetero norms. But it's a way different playing field than it was for our parents.

GC: In a few recent studies, it was found that millennials are not having as much sex as previous generations at similar ages. The general consensus is that the millennial generation is more socially conscious about values, more career-driven, and has been taking less health risks. Do you find that hard to believe?

NS: Highly doubt that less sex is result of weighing health risks. Again, it's probably due to the normalization of sex. Sex is normal! You don't have to go at it all the time because you're scared your parents might find out and it's your only chance to get laid. So, yeah, maybe millennials don't feel the need to seek it out organically because they can get that form of stimulation easier online.

GC: Do people have sex to validate themselves?

NS: Absolutely. It's a pretty significant role if you're young and playing the field. We bring this up in our song "Cherry." When you're trying to conjure up an ideal version of yourself in your head, you want to see yourself as sexual and sexually desirable. Having sex can help cement our sexual illusions and/or delusions about ourselves. And yep — not only can we get validation everywhere, but we can get all forms of stimulation (sexual or otherwise). We are CONSTANTLY entertained. Sex as entertainment isn't as necessary. We can literally keep ourselves entertained by creating virtual worlds around our life and existence — it's all quite grand and fragile at the same time. - Popsugar

"NEW MUSIC: New Shack – “Ways and Means”"

Provo, Utah’s New Shack surprised us with the deeply groovy synth-pop of their latest single “Ways and Means.” Singer Cat Leavy expertly weaves her breathy vocals through the pulsing synth work and stuttering electro drums. “Ways and Means” is out now on Little Assembly, who hint at big things to come from the duo in 2018… Till then, be sure to get well-acquainted with “Ways and Means” via Soundcloud, Spotify, or otherwise.

New Shack also filmed a music video for “Ways and Means” – check that out here. - Buffablog

"Video Premiere: New Shack – “House Of Frankenstein”"

It’s never too early for Halloweeny moods. In fact synthscape pop duo New Shack was already dreaming up spooky ideas when they self-released this single back in late August. But now they’ve got a video for it. And while the song and the video aren’t technically that scary, there’s an austere creepiness to the clip.

The two appear mostly motionless, usually alone, in a house that does vibe like a secluded haunted mansion if set designed by a ’70s Fassbinder-indebted indie director. Plus, we love when a band confounds expectations, and while we’re not sure what one expects from a band from Provo, Utah, I’m guessing it’s not minimal, ethereal, electro-lulling, R.E.M.-sleep soundtracks like this.

New Shack released its first full-length, Shadow Girl, in June and have a show at Velour in Provo on September 26, otherwise no tour dates set. So for now, check out the video for House Of Frankenstein below. - CMJ

"Music from MTV's "Awkward""

New Shack – “Heart In The Rain”
Jenna and Lacey talk about Jenna going back to school

Myzica – “Wait Just A Minute”
Tamara and Patrick go out to eat

Fialta – “Baby, I”
Jenna babysits Morgan

Wonderful Humans – “Just What I Needed”
Matty holds Morgan

Farryl Purkiss – “In Apostrophes”
Matty Puts Morgan to Bed

Peter Sivo Band – “Love of No Return”
Tamara talks to Patrick’s friends at the clam bake

The Legends – “Keep Him”
Jenna talks to her mom on the phone

Haley Ross – “Fierce Love”
Jenna’s parents get home and check on Morgan - MTV Soundtrack

"Localized: New Shack"

Industrious and resilient, Provo-based synthpop duo New Shack have burst into a bright existence in the last year and a half. Recalling the gauzy, early-’00s indie pop of bands like Stars and The Postal Service, and at times veering into cerebral dream worlds inhabited by Cocteau Twins and Purity Ring, New Shack’s Catherine Leavy and Eric Robertson have hatched a glistening, vintage-inspired synthpop sound that’s all their own.

The pair formulated New Shack in 2014 during a period when they were living on separate continents. Though Leavy was living in Germany and Robertson in Provo, they collaborated virtually, each working on their respective contributions to songs. “I would make beats, songs and ideas, and then send them to her,” Robertson says. Leavy would respond quickly with vocal tracks for each song. “It was collaborative,” Leavy says, “but we would work separately. I would come up with some kind of story or lyric. I’d write vocals and send him back some kind of demo.”

Despite working across continents, New Shack was a perfect collaboration for Leavy and Robertson, who released an EP in November of 2014 and their debut full-length, Shadow Girl, in June of last year. “There’s been times where I’ve sent her a track and like, three hours later, she’s sent back a full demo, and we’d maybe change one thing, if anything, from that to the final,” says Robertson. Leavy’s ability to adroitly add lyrics to Robertson’s demos makes the band’s process quick. “Eric’s able to build these tracks that are so unique and so great,” Leavy says. “Usually, when he sends me an idea, the track is already [fleshed out]. I’m like, ‘Yes, this is exactly right.’”

New Shack – Shadow Girl
New Shack – Shadow Girl
Leavy, who now resides in Provo, contributes serene vocals and beatific lyrics to Robertson’s perfectly produced vintage-synth sounds. “Once I get a melody in my head, I tend to write songs in a kind of fury,” she says. “I write lyrics and poetry a lot—I keep files and files of it on my computer. Sometimes Eric will send me a track that really speaks to me, and I kind of start hearing a hook, and I might connect it to words I’ve already written, or I’ll write the words to that melody I hear.” Leavy’s airy vocals complement Robertson’s electronics, and together, they blend into a complete whole. “What I really like about New Shack is that I write the beats and she writes the melodies and lyrics,” says Robertson, “and we don’t really get into each other’s business too much. I think that’s why it works so well.”

The duo’s collaborative sound shines on Shadow Girl, a 10-track album of dreamy synthpop crafted with vintage synthesizers. Though the album has a gritty, analog-synth flair, Shadow Girl’s magic is in its flourishes of subtle, modern twists. “There’s definitely a modern edge to it,” says Robertson. Leavy agrees: “While there’s a lot of actual ’80s vintage sounds, I do think our sound is pretty niche—it’s pretty different,” she says. The album balances neatly between vintage-synth attitudes and contemporary leanings. Glossy synths and chimes color tracks like “Operation” and “Stereo Station,” while tiny beats, claps and samples skitter across the album, placing it on a forward-moving path. Pulling each track along, Leavy’s vocals shift to the tune of each track, one minute dreamy and ethereal, another, pulsing right along to the beat.

Shadow Girl’s forward momentum has brought them accolades here at home and abroad, including a nod on SLUG’s own Top 5 “Organic Free-Range Local Albums” of 2015. “New Shack really clicking and being successful so fast is really kind of unexpected,” says Leavy. “I recorded [New Shack’s] EP on cellphone earbuds, like, not even iPhone earbuds. It was really, really lo-fi.” Not content to coast on the wave of Shadow Girl’s success, Robertson has begun to incorporate guitar into their previously all-synth aesthetic for their new EP, entitled Eingang. “The tones on the guitar that I’m using now are pretty ’80s-sounding as well—ambient and big,” he says. Their August 2015–released single, “House of Frankenstein,” featured a chorus-saturated guitar hook, but Eingang promises to push the envelope further. “We’ve even gone farther from that with guitar and big drums,” says Robertson. “There’s less synth on the new one.”

Eingang will also be the first release on New Shack’s boutique label, Pleasant Pictures Music. Pleasant Pictures—which is also the name of the studio where Robertson produces music for select local acts, including Hive Riot and Static Waves—will release Eingang and other curated records digitally and physically on CD and vinyl. In addition to starting a record label, the duo also acted in videos for four of their tracks in 2015, ranging from the Mad Max–esque aesthetic of “Disassembly” to the minimal visuals in their “House of Frankenstein” video. They also play selectively in Provo and Salt Lake at hometown venues such as Velour Live Music Gallery, Muse Music Cafe, Urban Lounge and Club X.

You can see New Shack live at SLUG’s Localized on Feb. 18 at Urban Lounge. Purchase New Shack’s music at, and find them on Facebook, or on Twitter at @newshackmusic. - SLUG Magazine

"Top 5 Albums of 2015"

It’s been a hell of a year for Utah County, but probably not in the way most imagined the year would go. In a city filled with people still bringing bass drums to the front of the stage like Imagine Dragons ripoffs, a good portion of the scene felt vague and unimaginative, looking more at creating a show than actually producing fantastic music. In fact, depending on the night you went out to watch a show, it looked more like live theater than a concert. In the middle of all those rose a few acts that instantly connected with the audience, scoring points on their own as musicians first before they even hit local stages. The biggest of the bunch had to be New Shack, a synthpop duo made up of Catherine Leavy and Eric Robertson, who recorded their entire album over the Internet while in separate countries until they settled back into Provo. In June, Shadow Girl finally saw the light of day and blew away many critics with the use of their harmonic structure and laid-back pop lyrics. One of the biggest factors to their sound is that little of it is pre-produced, as the band meshes retro analog synth instruments with dark-pop vocals to create fantastic tunes you can dance to, as well as be the mysterious stranger in the corner to. Shadow Girl doesn’t try to hide in a sea of overly complicated compositions or layers of processed studio magic to get the message across—this is a beautiful album from start to finish that wants to whisk you away to better, dreamier locations in your mind. Considering how a lot of the music in Utah County this year missed the mark or fell flat, that’s a ride I’d be more than willing to take multiple times over. - SLUG Mag

"Albums of the Year 2015"

I was as taken aback by “Shadow Girl” as any local release I’ve ever heard. The synth-pop duo, composed of Catherine Leavy and Eric Robertson, have tapped into something truly special. Robertson’s soundscapes, full of lumbering, scratchy analog synths, undulate beneath Leavy’s sugar-coated, pocket-size vocals that conjure ingénues like Nancy Sinatra and France Gall. “Shadow Girl” is a striking album full of ear candy.

Favorite songs: “Disassembly,” “Shadow Girl,” “A Million Pieces” - Daily Herald

"Best New Songs"

There's not a whole lot of info around about indie-electro outfit New Shack, who apparently hail from Utah and describe their music as "synth dreams in a cyber world." 'Neptune' is a decidedly celestial affair with glittery synth showered around a whirring thrusters-are-go droning effect and the almost otherworldly distorted whispers of vocalist Catherine Leavy for a delicately balanced synth-pop gem sitting somewhere between Purity Ring and Broods. /MF - V Music Australia

"New Shack - Neptune"

With a spacey vibe featuring some fluttery synths, I just can't help but think about Beach House's breakout track "Norway." The synthesizer intentionally finds itself sliding out of key and back again creating a haunting effect, priming your ears as the track jumps to life with a dancey bass line and Leavy's reverbed, gentle vocals. - Indie Shuffle

"Impose Magazine Feature"

Provo, Utah’s New Shack dropped the analog glamor sense of sophistication mixed with sparse, sweet, and subtle sensationalism with their “House of Frankenstein” video. The Mark Leavy, Kyle Gibby, & Nick Rush video showcased the group’s hi-art sensibility that is delicately applied to the dream-scape worlds of fashionable poses, textiles, spacial set designs that keeps the fashion week phenomenon lingering a bit longer. The synth-obsessed twosome of Catherine Leavy and Eric Robertson began the collaborative correspondence while Leavy was in Germany where virtual audio transmissions commenced their synergistic process. Find this and more on New Shack’s recent album Shadow Girl available now via Bandcamp, and the two shared with us the following words on the making of their Shadow Girl album, and their “House of Frankenstein” video:

'It’s been interesting to see the evolution of New Shack from its EP origins to our most recent single, “House of Frankenstein”. In many ways our name “New Shack” has been a pretty good moniker for our sound and approach. We’ve experimented with all kinds of “new” sounds in a lo-fi way, mixing analog synth sounds that pop and slide with layers of crackly vocals. “Frankenstein” marks our first song recorded on a professional mic and also our first song featuring guitar and bass as the main instruments. It was unfamiliar territory, but it came together so fluidly—we immediately knew we’d discovered something special. We’ve never had a specific vision for our sound so we feel lucky to have found this thing that feels like what we’re supposed to be doing. We’re excited to continue on in this direction and see where New Shack goes.' - Impose Magazine

"BIRP! September 2015 Playlist Top Ten"

1.Beirut - Gibraltar

2.CHVRCHES - Never Ending Circle

3.Mutemath - Monument

4.sjowgren - seventeen

5.Wild Ones - Dim The Lights

6.Szymon - Medusa

7.BANNERS - Shine A Light

8.New Shack - House of Frankenstein - BIRP!

"Saturday Singles – “House of Frankenstein” by New Shack"

Bearing a title that would suggest something completely different than what the song actually provides, Provo, Utah duo New Shack’s 2015 “House of Frankenstein” single is absolutely sumptuous. Playing a bit like a slow-motion Chromatics song from the Kill For Love era and capturing the same sort of emotional resonance as any number of soft rock hits of yesteryear, the supremely relaxing, deliberately-paced song is built around a echoing drum beat and a very simple, reverberating guitar riff from musician/producer Eric Robertson. Catherine Leavy’s delicate, breathy vocal floats over the lust instrumental background, giving the track a truly wistful quality and becoming especially vibrant during a chorus in which the singer’s lines build a chugging momentum from one to the next.

Despite the glowing warmth of the single, there’s a sense of loneliness to it too – perhaps this notion is where the otherwise unrelated title is derived – and various scenes in the music video emphasize this element of the song. Moments of static like one would expect on a worn VHS tape work to create a nostalgic feel in this mostly uncomplicated but gorgeous video – indeed, the whole thing looks like something that would have popped up on MTV during the late ‘80s or early ‘90s. Arty shots of slowly revolving and shimmering mirrors and jump edits that change up Leavy’s appearance from one second to the next as she delivers her lyrics add some elements of eye candy to the mix, but I actually preferred some of its more straight-forward scenes. Long shots showing Robertson performing his guitar parts in what appears to be a barren factory or warehouse effortlessly relate the prevailing mood and tone of the song, and there’s something wondrous about similar scenes in which the guitarist is joined by a gently swaying and dancing Leavy. This whole quietly enthralling video seems a demonstration of how less is sometimes more – it’s photographed exceedingly well by Mark Leavy and is immensely pleasurable to watch, enhancing the best moments of the song it promotes. Highly recommended. - Band Jack


If you checked out New Shack‘s killer remix of DWNTWN’s “Stood Me Up” this past weekend, I’m pretty sure you were intrigued and wanted to hear more from the Provo, UT duo. There’s something in the water over in Provo – with Neon Trees and Fictionist hailing from there, both slaying us with the sexiest 80’s throwback feels – it’s quite evident that there’s a new movement coming. Comprised of Eric Robertson and Catherine Leavy, New Shack create a unique mix of retro analog synth instrumentals and dreamy pop vocals that carry dark and abstract lyrics. In other words, this is the stuff I live for. The band’s newest masterpiece, “House of Frankenstein,” is equal parts dreamwave bliss as it is haunting, giving off a darker Purity Ring vibe. - The Daily Listening

"Overlooked Albums from 2014"

Hailing from Provo, the duo of Eric Robertson and Catherine Leavy came together to make the alternative-pop project New Shack, and in the process created one of the sweetest EPs of the year. Their self-titled indie-electro venture feels like Phantogram, if Phantogram were stripped away all the pre-programmed elements and became a retro darkwave band. New Shack shifts from being a dance album to a lullaby on a dime but, commanded by Leavy’s vocal treatment, the tracks still sound like they belong together. - City Weekly

"Local Review: New Shack"

New Shack = Little Boots + Cocorosie
This Provo-dwelling duo is cutesy and fun—even their Bandcamp profile picture is a strip of photo-booth pictures. The album’s heavily synthesized female vocals are hauntingly catchy over the sounds of simple yet good electronic beats. The simplicity of the album is what makes it great—it’s not trying too hard to be an iconic piece of art like a lot of electronic artists are clearly attempting. Highlights of the album include opener “Little Boys,” the dangerously catchy-in-a-way-that-it-will-never-leave-your-head “Neptune,” and the down-tempo closing track, “Lonely Pocket Self.” The album is calming but entertaining enough to listen to in a wide range of situations. I’m listening to it as I prepare for bed after a long day. New Shack are another example of how, for reasons unbeknownst to me, good music is actually coming out of Provo. –Julia Sachs - SLUG Magazine

"New Shack - “House of Frankenstein”"

Make no mistake, this is no horror soundtrack but a beautiful piece of ethereal synthpop from Utah’s New Shack that is reminiscent of the Cocteau Twins, The Sundays, Julee Cruise and vaporwaved Ladytron. The soaring vocals, guitars and synths of “House of Frankenstein” pull you into a kind of feathery lull, causing you to believe in a love affair with this grotesque creature. “House of Frankenstein” follows-on from New Shack’s recent album Shadow Girl, also released via CT’s Future City Records. - Sound Friend

"'New Shack' infuses retro dark wave sound with a 'nostalgic' vibe"

PROVO — What started as transatlantic music collaboration between Eric Robertson and Catherine Leavy, turned into the synthesis of a new sound, unlike anything previously heard in the Provo music arena.

While described as darkwave, dreampop, retrowave and synthpop, hints at New Shack’s genre hardly capture the New Shack experience. -

"New Shack is back with another captivating song, and video, on "House of Frankenstein"."

It's a laid-back gem, especially considering New Shack's normally frantic pace, but a reserved approach allows (lead singer) Catherine Leavy's vocal abilities to really shine. It's something of an ecstatic vision, and that vision is never clearer than when the chorus gradually builds as Leavy blissfully sings from somewhere above earth before she comes "crashing down."

The dictionary defines ecstatic as "involving an experience of mystic self-transcendence", and that's exactly what we get with "House of Frankenstein". While the video seems to be an escape from time, as outfits, rooms and positions constantly shift, the color and costume themes root themselves in a dreamy past. Its use of mirrors, grainy images and pastels beautifully complement a song that triumphantly manages to simultaneously feel mellow and truly ecstatic. - Musically Proper

"The Poetry of New Shack: "Cherry" Video Hits the Internet"

New Shack projects a philosophical and darkly romantic spin on life... - Vie Magazine


New Shack EP - 2014

Shadow Girl LP - 2015

House of Frankenstein (Single) - 2015

Airplane (Single) - 2016

Eingang EP - 2016



"It’s never too early for Halloweeny moods. In fact synthscape pop duo New Shack was already dreaming up spooky ideas when they self-released [“House of Frankenstein”]… Plus, we love when a band confounds expectations, and while we’re not sure what one expects from a band from Provo, Utah, I’m guessing it’s not minimal, ethereal, electro-lulling, R.E.M.-sleep soundtracks like this." -CMJ

New Shack is Cat Leavy and Eric Robertson, a synthwave duo from Utah. Together they craft a unique blend of gritty analog synth tones and surreal, airy vocals. The two started collaborating while Leavy lived in Germany and much of their discography was created via virtual sound exchange.

New Shack is on all major sound platforms. 

Band Members