Progressive Youth Club
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Progressive Youth Club

New York City, New York, United States | SELF

New York City, New York, United States | SELF
Band Jazz Avant-garde

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""The complexities of these compositions seem driven by a kind of restlessness that has as much to do with grief and anger and love as it has to do with smart postmodern rehashes of musical forms.""

Progressive Youth Club
inhibited dance music of the machine age

The band's name seems to tell us a lot; a progressive youth club doesn't necessarily have much to do with music, and this band clearly has its tongue in its collective cheek if it's going to name its avant-garde aspirations so blandly; "music for the inhibited" seems to mean more wit and less emotion. Yet I didn't find myself smirking so much as I listened to these tracks. The music on this album is much richer than the title implies and it's not exhausted, trite or aridly intellectual. It's as if the composer, Qasim Naqvi, couldn't help himself; his own musical sensibility has set this album on quite a different course. The music here is surprisingly emotional. It's also hungry; the complexities of these compositions seem driven by a kind of restlessness that has as much to do with grief and anger and love as it has to do with smart postmodern rehashes of musical forms. There's a track on the album called "Bunny Engine". Naqvi finds it hilarious that, these days, everyone has a band name that includes an animal. But this piece of music is much more than a quip. Listening to it, I can't get the Energizer Bunny out of my head, but this bunny is tripping out, exhausted and lost on the outskirts of some vast city in the Midwest. It could be funny, but it's not, and you begin to feel for the poor thing, to root for him. I've always thought it a singular achievement in the performing arts to make an audience fall silent, mid-laugh, and this music comes close to that kind of experience. We become inhibited when we're forced to recognize our own desire not to be. The achievement of this album is that it sets up that confrontation for us. And I suppose you could get that in the title, but it wouldn't be as catchy. - Writer Jenni Quilter


"PYC always reminds me of that sound, the giddy and dulcet thud und drang of it all."

Whenever I hear PYC i think of my good friends Igor and Mickey. Former best friends and managers of a boxing seal act and a fugitive Afro- Klezmer orchestra out of Bushwick's Hope Garden Projects, the pair divided with enmity over who would inherit the golden torch embossed accordion of Mickey's former flame Minnie. This after she was unexpectedly laid to waste by a freak stampede of 300 wild peacocks down Bedford Ave. one wintry eve.
At the funeral Igor and Mickey clobbered one another with dueling Fender bass stocks until both in delirium came crashing down upon the aforementioned accordion. PYC always reminds me of that sound, the giddy and dulcet thud und drang of it all. The groups post-industrial dance party parry and thrust always makes me ask myself, Were they there? Were there recordings made of Igor and Mickey's postmortem musical fracas which I was never made aware of? The mystery and the berserk melody lingers on - Greg Tate, writer for the Village Voice and Rolling Stone


""Perhaps this is the soundscape where man and machine rock in unison.""

Do machines like to dance? According to the Progressive Youth Club, a group of upstarts from Calarts, maybe. Their music sounds like what the soundtrack would be if the robot from Metropolis were filmed preparing to go out for a night of dancing. People sure do like to make music with machines nowadays and yes people like to dance like robots. Perhaps this is the soundscape where man and machine rock in unison . - Kendra Ware, Cool Eh Magazine


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Recently born from the brain of bandleader and drummer Qasim Naqvi, Progressive Youth Club is a vibrant and emotionally charged instrumental ensemble, willfully trapped within the confines of a warped and scratchy record, sometimes in continues loop and sometimes nudged out of position. The Youth Club's primary mission is to evoke an atmosphere of interlocking parts, propelled by rhythmic development and minimalist concepts.

Stephanie Richards: Trumpet Ochion Jewell: Saxophones
Amino Belyamani: Keyboards
Red Wierenga: Accordion
Ryan Ferreira: Guitar
Keith Witty: Bass
Chris Dingman: Vibes
Qasim Naqvi: Drums/Composition/Leader