Nic Engel

Nic Engel

 Albany, New York, USA
BandFolkAcoustic

The quirks that everyone has and the fundamentals they all share, realized through music.

Biography

Nic Engel is admittedly impulsive. He likes things done his way and he doesn’t wait for a second chance. Sometimes it’s a vice, other times a blessing, but it is always him. That impulsiveness made him the first non-original member of a college arts group, where he organized an acoustic showcase that is now five years strong. It made him hold late-night concerts in building stairwells that dozens of listeners would evade campus security for. It’s what led him to create and coordinate an arts & music festival that brought some of the top hometown talent together. It is what will lead him on a tour across the country, mere days after completing his Master’s Degree in audio array signal processing and boasting an unconventional PA system he designed based on his research.

None of that even touches upon his music.

“I place no artificial restrictions on how I write. In fact, I listen to fairly little acoustic music myself, which naturally causes me to draw inspiration from other genres. With a full month free for composition, I can’t even imagine what will happen…I just know that it’ll rock.”

Nic's style expresses his eccentricities as well as he could himself. It’s a New York City-esque melting pot; acoustic rock with some folk, or perhaps singer/songwriter, plus some funk…even prog elements. His live show, not surprisingly, blends all of these styles with the occasional Disney cover, yet somehow remains genuine.

“There will always be a natural inclination towards writing about what depresses you,” Nic remarks. “I have an intrinsic drive to be simultaneously honest and positive. “That means that I try to present both an experience and the faith in one’s self that is needed to grow from that experience. Lyrically and musically, my goal is to create something people can relate to, without deception. There’s no sense in using fiction to promote a good self-image.”

The music is varied, as expected. “Can You Relate?” is a quirky folk tune with a driving outro and a blunt application of Nic’s ideology. “Ravager” is a darker offering, while “New Year” (from his recent “An Evening at North Pointe” live CD) boasts a California-inspired, calming demeanor. Together, these songs readily illustrate Nic’s diverse influences while maintaining the lyrical precepts of self-empowerment he so strongly believes in.

Slowly but surely, Nic's conviction is earning results. He's performed in cities all over the Northeast, including NYC, Boston, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Cleveland. His music has been aired on WERW (Syracuse) and WRPI (Troy), where he has also performed live. Currently managed by Todd Stevens of Boondock Productions, Nic’s played for over-capacity crowds [North Pointe Cultural Arts Center, RPI’s “GZ Basement”] and was awarded Boondock Productions’ “Best Solo Artist” award for 2005. The perpetual optimist, asking Nic what’s next only garners the same response as earlier: he doesn’t know, but he knows “it’ll rock”.

Lyrics

Can You Relate?

Written By: Nic Engel

burnish your immaculate rendition
how noble! but why are you so dirty?
what matters now cannot be what mattered then
lest you fall apart again

so your great wall collapses, but what of your strife?
will it fester and burn away your lonely life?
i’ve never been strong enough to admit what i’m not;
maybe that’s what i need you for

once pagan, twice stubborn, now you’ve evolved
first impressions become second thoughts
tell me your dreams, have they come to pass
then don’t sanctify the past

mixing ruth and your apathy sets nothing at peace
remember what your memory will not let you see
vying will never give you release

you
maybe that’s worth fighting for

maybe that’s what i need you for
(you don’t need anyone in your life)
maybe that’s worth fighting for
(you don’t need anyone by your side)
has he cut out your heart and more?
(you don’t need anyone in your life)
maybe that’s what i need you for
(you don’t need anyone by your side)
maybe that’s worth fighting for
(you don’t need anyone in your life)
maybe that’s what i need you for
(you don’t need anyone in your life)
know that you are worth dying for
know that you are worth dying for

New Year

Written By: Nic Engel

in my life, i have seen the ice of your eyes when you look at me
and the quiet smile and the reservation
for once in his life, fire underneath

he wants and he waits and he worries
as strange as it may seem, his loyalty's to her

and where he goes, he's never walked before
his legs are out of control
and he's following me but says i walk too slow
but he's lost without me

don't stress yourself out
there's plenty of time
you say i'm wrong, well,
i've never been right, no reason to start now

in sensing a private outburst, i build myself
my rooms, my heat, my power's you
i'm not safe and if you happen to change
it's nothing new

show me your world, a rose-tinted point of view
i'm staking a claim on your head
cause you're seemingly hostile, but baby, i'm scared, too
and i'm fighting me everyday

and where he goes, he's never walked before
his legs are out of control
and he's following me but says i walk too slow
but he's lost without me
show me your world, a rose-tinted point of view
i'm staking a claim on your head
cause you're seemingly hostile, but baby, i'm scared, too
and i'm fighting me everyday

i'm claiming a stake in your head

Ravager

Written By: Nic Engel

i'm constantly deceived; tell me what you do
what book shows you how to fool me?
raise your right hand and tell me the truth
you're blunting daggers and honing what i see

what do you want from me...

what do you want from me?
pull that doubt-ridden IV needle
you're nursing, you're healing
but are you just playing games?
innocence mired in beauty
a misfit is still different
if you want one anyway, then take me

watashino shinkonwa nemui desu
my soul is sleepy and it may not awake
given enough time, a prison is home
give it enough time, a prison is home
break me out

what are you doing to me...

what do you want from me?
pull my doubt-ridden IV needle out
if i say, if i say "leave me be"
i'm lying
what the hell are you trying to prove?!
you're nursing, you're healing
but are you just playing games?
innocence mired in beauty
a misfit can still listen
a misfit is still human
i am innocence mired in fallacy
there is not much time left,
so if you have to leave, then take me

Discography

Stairwell Demo (2005)
Mark Irish Demo (2006)
An Evening at North Pointe (live, 7/1/2006)

Set List

Ravager
New Year
Blasphemy
Jinkobah Funk
Can You Relate?
Highland Ave
I Hate Girls
Static
The Whoregon Trail