Prussia
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Prussia

Ferndale, Michigan, United States | SELF

Ferndale, Michigan, United States | SELF
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"Prussia on tour and taking pictures of people’s pets"

In a pizza place deep in Nashville is Prussia – on tour, sharing fries, living the life of a band that still have day jobs. They were originally called "Russian" but after the threat of legal action by 'this DJ Russian guy, we just dropped the N and added a P,' explained singer Ryan Spencer.

The band, currently travelling the country, is busy 'slogging around, playing some fun shows, sleeping on some amazing floors, and taking pictures of people's pets.'

"Some nights we'll barely make $20," said Ryan. "We create this kind of music because it's what we love. Obviously, it's not a good business plan because as I've expressed before, we're all broke as hell.

"But we still have souls!

"We all still have day jobs. I serve coffee two days a week, and then take time off for months at a time to tour. My job is really good about that stuff."

Money is not a determining factor, so what is it that drives the band?

"If you spread love and positivity, the end result will be a much happier and more satisfying life," said Ryan, extolling the teachings of one of the most influential people in his life, Phreddy Wiescheusen.

If you've never heard Prussia's music before then expect to hear some 'dark pop music.'

"The music is lighter and happier sounding, while the lyrics are very dark," said Ryan. "We sing about real things that are consuming us in real life, so each lyric is very relevant to us. It may not make sense to others, but I feel that people can relate to sincerity, and our music is most definitely sincere."

If the band wears their hearts on their sleeves then they also quite rightly dive headfirst into the deep end of the emotional spectrum too.

"An opportunity came up where we got to play for the first time live on New Year's Eve in 2007 so we took it," said Ryan. "We've been obsessed with playing live ever since."

"We are all involved in the writing process," continued Ryan. "I come up with the initial ideas, and the rest of the guys strip them down, and change them up until they're a much better and more fully realized song.

"We're constantly trying to write the best music we could possibly make. I truly believe that we're getting closer all the time."

The band might not have hit the big time yet but when you believe in what you do, does it matter?

"Success is sanity," said Ryan. "So far, we've been unsuccessful. I'm a nervous wreck, and an emotional basket case."

But you've got to admire a band that believe tonight's gig, 'will be the best ever – at least until tomorrow."

You never know, maybe tomorrow David Byrne will pick up the phone and propel Prussia to the top of the charts.



Prussia has just released their EP "Four for Attention" which is available for download from bandcamp. They have a new album in the pipeline and are playing live dates all across the States. - Gigape


"Band of the Week: Detroit, MI's Prussia"

Some groups just have it. That magical component that makes everything sound so effortless, polished and compelling. Whether its a highly specialized musical acumen, a keen eye for detail or just a persistent work ethic, there are just some bands that churn out first-rate music so easily, it’s just downright mind-boggling.
Exhibit A is Detroit quintet Prussia. On their slithery and enchanting “What Am I Going To Tell Your Mom?,” the group unravels a groove-based personal narrative that borrows on vocalist Ryan Spencer’s reedy timbre and a haunting landscape that’s akin to Broken Bells. The song is spacey and draws on strings, horns and guitars to construct a gauzy and languorous rhythm that helps push the song towards the heavens.
Second track “Bleeder,” is the epilogue to “What Am I Going To Tell Your Mom?” Another narrative that wears its heart on its sleeve and tells it like it is. Frankly, matter-of-factly and without shame. Even when offering up throwaway lines such as “All my friends are whores,” the organ-drenched effort still manages to find a way to seep itself into the psyche and latch on. In the end, that’s what good songs and good bands do. They find a way into the corners and crevices.
On the haunting and smoky “This House Boat is Making Me Sea Sick,” the Motor City quintet goes for something far more cerebral and subdued. There’s a teetering and lingering effect that mimics a boat out on the open water and its a charming device that very few could probably execute without failing. Prussia does however and the results are nothing short of stunning.
Four for Attention ends with “Girl Cops,” a quirky and eccentric exercise that anchors itself with a falsetto-laden chorus and a circular and sun-drenched landscape. “Girl Cops,” relies on loops, synths and the quintet’s inherent magnetism to do most of the work, but with a vocalist this dynamic, there’s not much effort needed.
And so it ends. Four short songs, four powerhouse statements. This is the kind of stuff that signals the arrival of a bonafide and breakout talent. Prussia is such a band. Let this blog post serve as the start of the Prussia bandwagon. Feel free to climb on board.
For fans of: Vampire Weekend, Broken Bells, Cold War Kids - Resident Media Pundit


"Detroit's Prussia Stops Off at Brooklyn Bowl"

etroit indie rock group Prussia has been getting a lot of attention recently, not the least from BestNewBands.com. Our very own Daniel Kohn interviewed lead singer Ryan Spencer back in January. They’re currently on tour, and stopped of at Brooklyn Bowl for a Wednesday night set.

The musical offerings at Brooklyn Bowl were slim; Prussia was the only band of the night. In fact, music wasn’t really the focus of the night. As I mentioned in my Via Audio show review, Brooklyn Bowl suffers as a venue due to its other attractions. The restaurant, bowling alleys, and giant T.V. screens on the walls (last night showing Planet Earth episodes and the original Star Wars) make the stage only one center of attention, and not always a convincing one. The noise makes it difficult to hear the quieter moments in any band’s set, and most people in the building have only a passing interest in the music. Which is fine, really. After all, the place is called Brooklyn Bowl, not Brooklyn Music. I’m just not sure why it’s such a sought-out venue.



Planet Earth at Brooklyn Bowl

Despite the sound problems, Prussia played a fun, tight set. Their music is a mixture of memorable melodic hooks, thumping bass lines, and tribal drum beats. Every song is groovy, danceable, and immediately infectious. Because of the space, it was often impossible to hear the anything in the mid-range, so the melody and the bass came out even more by comparison. Unfortunately, Prussia’s slower songs felt plodding and repetitive, since the guitar lines and synth gestures that give their music its specific character couldn’t be heard. Perhaps as a result, Prussia was at its best when they played thick, layered textures, especially with vocal harmonies. There were some really great call-and-response moments, and a cover of “Monkey Gone to Heaven” that would have made The Pixies proud.



Singer Ryan Spencer is a gawky guy, and flailed around the stage endearingly the entire set. This made his vulgar, forceful lyrics that much more surprising – and enjoyable. Sex was one main topic, as was the awkward aftermath of sex. More than anything else last night, the lyrics made me listen in to what was happening, and gave me an appreciation for the unflinching nature of the band. Any example I could give would be unprintable, so you’ll just have to listen to their music yourself to see what I mean.

It was a short night at Brooklyn Bowl, and probably not the best place to get a good feel for what Prussia’s all about. Luckily for the New Yorkers out there they’ll be coming back to the city soon! You can check them out at Cake Shop (my favorite!) on Sunday, April 3rd, or Death By Audio on April 4th. This is part of a big East Coast tour, so if you live anywhere in the area, check out their myspace page to see if they’re showing up at a venue nearby. - Bestnewbands.com


"After 2-year break, Detroit band Prussia returns with eclectic new album, 'Poor English'"

THE LOWDOWN: Back in 2008, Detroit rock-pop band Prussia put out the album "Dear Emily, Best Wishes, Molly." It was a raw release that vocalist Ryan Spencer now looks back on as a tad unpolished. "We would have totally unprofessional takes that sounded awful and we left them on the record. There (are) so many things about 'Dear Emily' that I like --I think there's a lot of charming things that happen in it -- but at the same time, it's definitely not a perfectionist's record," he says.

Prussia's style is tough to pin down. The band rocks out during live shows, but its recordings sound pop, sometimes even baroque. After a two-year hiatus during which the band kep a low profile while writing a bevy of songs, Prussia is back now with lots of tour dates and the soon-to-be-released "Poor English," which Spencer says is basically the total opposite of "Dear Emily."

"It's a song cycle. Some of the stuff is a little bit indulgent, but for the most part, I think we tried to do as much as we could with as little as possible and magnify some of our strengths."

THE LINEUP: Spencer, his brother Andrew and Brenton Bober are original band members. In the past year, they've added childhood friend Kasey Press and Illinois-bred Adam Pressley, formerly of Ohtis. He moved to Detroit because of his belief in Prussia's future. "We just became really good friends, and he expressed interest in joining our band as his other band was kind of ending. We'd always just kind of clicked and had a lot of fun with him and really respected him as a musician. It was just a really easy transition," says Ryan Spencer.

THE SOUND: Esoteric instruments -- African percussion pieces such as the kalimba -- mix with a standard guitar-bass-drum combos, and members play a little bit of everything. "Poor English" sounds fresh and accessible, but at the same time it was recorded, Prussia also laid down tracks for an upcoming disco-synth album called "Prussia Goes to the Disco." Tracks from each are available on the group's Bandcamp site as an EP called "Four For Attention."

Recording the "Disco" album "helped us open our minds more to both styles," Spencer says. "Obviously, I'm constantly writing music and we're constantly doing things with music, so to work on two different styles of music helps them bleed together a little bit more."

CD OR NO CD?: While the band has a booking agent and PR in place, they're still searching for the right label to release "Poor English." Of late, though, Spencer has found himself questioning whether Prussia should even put out a physical release. "It's like, what can a label do at this point? For indie rock, nobody buys albums. I don't buy albums. I feel terrible about it, but I download everything. Everybody does. Nobody has money. We're in a weird spot because we're total hypocrites," he says. "We don't exactly know how important a label is, but I guess we'll find out. We might put it out by ourselves. We'll see."

FIGHT SONGS: Spencer admits that the recording process isn't easy for Prussia. "We fight a lot," he says. "Poor English" was recorded with the help of rising star Josh Epstein (Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.), which Spencer says was much needed. "It was great having another outside source when we would be at wits' end with each other to have somebody else that's kind of removed from the writing process to say: 'Hey, maybe this is a better idea. Go with that.' It was almost like someone who could act as a mediator to getting our ideas across without us fighting for hours." - Detroit Free Press


"Prussia, Detroit The New Sound from Motor City"

Mention Detroit to a stranger, and visions of crime, grime and decay come to mind. Even the city’s most famous exports: Motown, The Stooges, Eminem and The White Stripes seemingly have abandoned the Motor City for sunnier skies and lower murder rates. But springing up from the urban blight and the skeletons of America’s automobile industry is Prussia, a band that has little to do with the city’s musical pedigree.

Built around a foundation of airtight harmonies, dizzying, almost Afrobeat-like percussion and jangling guitars, the band feels like a sporty and foreign alternative to the gas-guzzling rock of Detroit’s past.

“There isn’t a lot of that stuff going on anymore. Bands aren’t using that as the foundation as much as they used to be,” says Adam Pressley, a multi-instrumentalist for Prussia.

Pressley and his cohorts may not be the typical barre chord churning rockers from times past, but the band finds itself among a group of local musicians who are changing perceptions of what bands and artists from Detroit sound like.

“There’s a great DIY scene going on here. A place called Scrummage University brings a lot of great artists and bands into the area,” says Pressley.

While a venue owned by a collective hardly brings to mind the dark-and-dingy-room-with-a-single-light-bulb-swinging-from-the-ceiling image made popular in 8 Mile, the reality isn’t that far off.

“It’s an old toy factory that was abandoned that has been turned into a music venue. I guess in a way it’s like that scene from 8 Mile,” says Pressley with a laugh.

But the sound of the scene and the validity of the venue hardly matter unless the band is worthwhile. What Prussia excels at is less straightahead rock and roll and more of a jangly and psychedelic take on pop music. Harmonies pop up, instruments drop out, and throughout are off-kilter melodies that feature hooks so big that lead singer Ryan Spencer could land Moby Dick. Imagine Flowers-era Rolling Stones colliding with Animal Collective while hanging out at Vampire Weekend’s house and you’re on the right track.

“Our songs seem to dodge the typical verse-chorus-verse-bridge-chorus structure and repetition of a typical pop song, but we consider ourselves a typical pop band. We are big fans of pop music; we just try to put our own spin on what we think pop music is,” says Pressley.

The basic ingredients for Prussia’s brand of anti-pop are similar to the more traditionally minded groups, but it’s what the chefs do with those ingredients that sets the band apart.

“It starts with Ryan on the guitar or another instrument. He writes the chords or a vocal melody and then he sends that to the band, and we pick it apart, add parts, subtract parts and rearrange things. In the end, it’s something completely different than what was sent to us,” says Pressley.

"The sound of young America" may have packed up and left for Los Angeles 40 years ago, but the sound of what remains is every bit as exciting, and that sound is coming from Prussia in Detroit. - Flagpole Magazine


"BOBBY, Alex Bleeker & the Freaks & Prussia played our Cinco de Mayo show @ Knitting Factory (pics)"

Detroit band Prussia opened the show and impressed with high energy and strong vocals. To quote Flagpole, "Imagine Flowers-era Rolling Stones colliding with Animal Collective while hanging out at Vampire Weekend's house and you're on the right track." - Brooklyn Vegan


"The Members of Prussia Push Pop"

Wake up in the back of a van on a sweaty August morning at a fly-flanked Texan gas station and it's bound to get a band bonding. It's embellishing to tie the Detroit quintet Prussia's recent buckling-down for their latest album and their newest songs' intricate layers and honeyed harmonies back to the inevitable parking-lot pass outs and couch surfing endured on the road — but still ... when they returned from this six-week, self-booked cross country tour last fall, suffice it to say: they went to work.

"After spooning with these guys in a van," bassist Andrew Remdenok gazes around the front porch where singer Ryan Spencer and his brother Drew sit beside him, "I was ready to get as far away as possible." OK, so, first they took a quick break from each other and decompressed from the tour that supported 2009's Blessed Be EP. But guitarist/organist Brenton Bober had been home (school/family) all that time continuing to write songs, and the band's longtime friend (former guitarist of IL-based Ohtis) Adam Pressley joined soon after their return, and "Ryan never stops writing," Drew nods, "and Brenton was ready to go."

"Let's do it right," Remdenok says, echoing their sentiments before starting work on what would become this season's Poor English LP. "Let's make the album that everybody wants." Remdenok, who'd recorded and mixed Prussia's Blessed Be and 2007's Dear Emily, notes that "our albums didn't sound like our live show," which, as Drew put forward, was caused by irregular schedules.

Ryan puts it bluntly: "We wanted to make something really good. Before we were just having a lot of fun making music, but when we put this down we wanted to make something that you could listen to a long time from now and be like, 'Whoa, holy shit, how did we do that?'"

"We wanted to try to write in a new style," adds Drew. "We even talked about having no drums on this and just having African percussive instruments."

"Broke a lot of bongos," Ryan nods.

"We were all involved [this time]," Remdenok says. "[Other albums] had been people being together at separate times, recording, then combining the results." He later uses the word "experiments" to describe those past recordings, but not this one — which rendered "a nice balance" stylistically of past albums, in terms of sound and feel: a noisy pop classicism melded into experimental indie rock and dashes of rhythm-focused, dubby, tribal spook folk. More than before, Poor English sounds forceful, with a tightly-woven ensemble air, thickly layered with harmonies and gracefully jitter-stepped with intricate song structures and multiple change-ups.

Pressley says English, for Prussia, was "a big reinvention." What started as a winter's retreat to "get the album sounding like our live shows," (under the boardwork of Miko Mader and Joshua Epstein) led to "an entirely new Prussia altogether." They also made a summer disco mix-tape on the fly. Dig? | RDW - Real Detroit Weekly


"Rise of the Prussian Empire"

Last winter, Adam Pressley was living in Chicago, playing with Samuel Swinson's indie folk outfit, Ohtis. It was a good gig for the now 25-year-old guitarist. They made some beautiful tunes, as anyone can see online in the four quaint tunes recorded by music documentarians Single Barrel. But after band dynamics shifted from weird to rough, Pressley pulled a Mary J. Blige, said enough's enough, and looked east, to Detroit, where he'd made friends with fledging quirk-pop quartet Prussia.

That friendship happened, explains, Ryan Spencer, 25, Prussia's lead singer, by way of Woodbridge-based rust belt photographer Justin Ames' cantankerous musical taste. "Justin's my go-to guy for music recommendations," Spencer says. "He hates most new bands, hates local, Detroit bands — hates everybody. Not really everybody — you know what I mean. But he liked our band. And when Justin was living in Illinois, hating all their local bands, he really liked Ohtis. He hooked us up; we actually ended up liking each other."

"Liking each other" as in they eventually toured together and became friends.

So, the day after he quit Ohtis last February, Pressley rung up his Prussians comrades, who were on tour, letting them know of his recent escape from Ohtis and intention to immigrate. "I was like, 'Fuck this, I'm going to Prussia!'" Pressley recalls. "I pretty much told them I was going to join the band. Before I moved, we started sharing ideas. When I got there, we started playing. Recording came soon after that. Everything's happened kind of quick, but cool."

Having recorded two albums in 2008 and nothing since, the band was in need of something — or someone — to come along and shake things up.

One month after Pressley moved to Ferndale, into a house with the brothers Spencer (Ryan and brother-drummer Drew), the band started penning songs. Lots of them. Ryan Spencer, bassist Andrew Remdonek, 23, and multi-instrumentalist-vocalist Brenton Bober, also 23, handled most of the writing. Pressley proved himself an invaluable arranger and musician. "I suck at playing guitar," Ryan says. "Even just for playing out, it was awesome to have Adam with us because he can actually play it like it's an instrument."

Pressley busied himself with setting up Auto-tune Karaoke gigs — just what it sounds like — and he's developed a steady following for his gigs. But when he wasn't putting the T-Pain treatment on Journey for the drunk and the drugged, Pressley was working on producing beats for what would end up being last summer's Prussia Goes to the Disco: A Summer Mixtape, described aptly by the Mostly Midwest blog as "a viral digital release full of synth-y pop and notes of hip-hop." It's still available for download, but the 50 unique CDs distributed at a house party last August have, no doubt, been hoarded away by the same devout Prussian army types who recently packed the Old Miami, 300 strong, to catch a set by the band.

Whereas Prussia's previous releases — Dear Emily, Best Wishes, Molly and the follow-up EP, Blessed Be, Yours Truly in Spirit & Soul, both recorded in 2008 — are lush and instrument-heavy, Disco is cleverly constructed from electronic elements. The 14 cuts include what might become signature originals, such as "Girl Cops," "Annie" and "You Ain't No Sailor," along with unlikely covers of Joanna Newsom and Jonathan Richman, and a few sensible collaborations with Coyote Clean-Up.

But Disco was an appetizer.

Poor English is the record we should be talking about.

A song cycle — akin to albums such as the Beach Boys' Smile and Marvin's What's Going On?, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 and (to a lesser degree) Marilyn Manson's Antichrist Superstar — Prussia's yet-to-be released long-player achieves a bold audible cohesion. Tracks begin and end on the same notes, and, if listened to on a CD, the record loops. If not, it's a bookended experience. Either way, patience is a virtue. Save for Ryan Spencer's dexterous delivery of the words "fuck" and "fucking," Prussia doesn't do cheap thrills. What Prussia does is hard work.

"All the songs were recorded in B or B-minor," Ryan Spencer says. "We rewrote songs to fit that key, knowing that when we were in the process of recording we could find a suitable part of a song to end on that would blend in well with the beginning of the next one, which is also why there really aren't any singles."

And though an avid listener might argue the band has been working toward some sort of homogeneity since the nerdy psych-soul of Dear Emily, drummer Drew Spencer says otherwise. "I think trying for this kind of cohesion was a new thing for us," he says, looking straight at Pressley. "And I think our sound has changed, and the addition of different members has changed it."

"We wanted to sound distinctive in relation to everything else that's going on right now," Ryan says, of the disc produced by Joshua Epstein (Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. and the Silent Years) and mixed deftly by Miko Mader. "We also wanted to have all of our own musical fingerprints on it, so we could listen to it and say, 'Drew did that part, I did this, that part is all Brenton, there's Adam, and there's Andrew.' And we were really trying not to add things that weren't necessary. But we still ended up doing that."

Adds Pressley, "For this album — and I'm pretty sure even as the new guy I can say this — a first for the band was that, even while writing them, we were already thinking about how we were going to play these songs live."

Unlike some studio darlings, Prussia's an engaging live band, one of the most so in Detroit. And they play out a ton.

Upon finishing the record (this is before they'd retained a professional booking agent, publicist and manager), and out of sheer excitement, the band hastily, navely started e-mailing the record to anyone in the industry they could think of — friends, bloggers and perfect strangers. It was unconventional DIY publicity blitz worth applauding for its balls, even if it lacked sincerity.

"We had this plan where we'd kind of suck people's dicks for a bit, then give them the record," Ryan says. "I'd write to, like, the guy who runs My Old Kentucky Blog: 'Oh, I love your blog, man. I read it all the time.' That's total bullshit. So we sucked My Old Kentucky dick for a bit. Then I'd mention something like, 'I like Sufjan Stevens too! And did I mention I also write music and have a band? Here's the record. Seriously though, you don't have to listen to it. In fact, don't listen to it. But if you do listen to it, I'd love to know what you think.'"

In chimes his brother: "Then he wrote a blog post about the band, something like, 'Hey, these Prussia guys love me, they love my blog — and, also, they happen to make awesome music too.'"

The blog-dick-suck technique worked. But so did doing it the old-fashioned way, hitting the road, plowing through blizzards. The band hit the Midwest and East Coast twice last year, once this winter, and a spring tour is right around the corner.

In the meantime, they're shopping Poor English and already have six songs written for their next record, which Pressley says will sound more light and more folk. "We're just now latching onto the trends of 2005, when everything went folk," he says, fighting a smirk. "We're really just setting out to do something passé."

Prussia plays Blowout on Thursday, March 3, at the New Dodge, with Zoos of Berlin, Man at Arms and Child Bite. - Detroit Metro Times


"In Recognition Of Human Experiments Gone Wrong"

Prussia, in reference to the land mass formerly ruled by Frederick the Great in its glory days, is now just a word. It serves only historical purposes and ceremonious power in terms of its original state of being. It used to be a country. Then it was abolished by the Nazis before it was officially abolished by the Allied forces following the second great war, so now it isn't anymore and hasn't been for quite some time.

One thinks that the only reason that the Detroit, Mich., band of the same name adopted it as its own identity is as a sarcastic response to what the Prussians felt they virtuously stood for: perfect organization, discipline, sacrifice, rule of law, obedience to authority, reliability, tolerance, frugality, punctuality, modesty, and diligence. Prussia, the band, thinks of those things not so much, other than to expose their hijackings by real life people and characters devised in their leisure quarters. The band operates loosely, employing little regimentation in either music or language, instead crossing all of the wires, jumbling the tried and true ways of the pop song and hence bringing into the world a brand of noble creature that is left to navigate between a sundry of vacillating moral contortions and the stuffs of haunting dreams that end in incestuous rapings, and that's just the start of this nasally melodic world that Calvino would have been impressed by.

Lead singer Ryan Spencer takes very short and extravagant pilgrimages into the abstract passages of his thinker and ticker, taking a swift run through those zip codes and collecting all of the most concerning and dynamic, sometimes demented, little views that zip by like motorcycles. His lyrics lay rubber inside, those black and dinky earworms, throwing paint up on the walls of heads and taking on the roll of the houseguests who can't take a hint. Oh, but that makes these lasting images seem to be negative, which they aren't. It's more that you're walking around singing, "I got into words and buried my face in the earth/You must be fucking insane/Listening to you, Christ, you must be insane - fucking insane," and feeling caught up in "Placemats For Three," a song about - if our calculations are correct - no fewer than four maniacs and the devil really having a field day with the impressionable and the sleep-walking.

We're left with a feeling - or one CAN be left with a feeling - that there are many experiments gone wrong on both the good and the evil sides of the board game. There's a real sense that God (a name that is invoked often in Spencer's lyrics, not as a hero, but as a symbol and almost as if he's one of those maniacs) and the devil are fucking things up and maybe not taking as much credit for the carnage as they should be. There's Kwame Kilpatrick, the corrupt Detroit mayor, who Spencer imagines as a guy - like himself - who is uncomfortable being alone and, what's so wrong with that? Frequently, there's chaos in Prussia and there's something very, very nice about that. It's something the original Prussians would have turned beet red at the sight. They're all dead anyway so it's not a worry anyway. - Daytrotter


"Prussia // Mediator"

Wanted to hip you guys to a Detroit band we were just turned onto ourselves. Prussia are like a slightly more poppy version of SubEx fave Nurses, trading in some of the psychedelia for a sort of bedroom ivy league indie. Further tilting the needle in their favor is the fact that the disc was produced by Josh Epstein of Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr. We expect this one to really grow on us.

Check out/download the album's key singles here.

MP3: [listen] Prussia - Mediator

=w= - Subservient Experiment


"uh oh i like something"

If you’re a friend of my Facebook fan page then you know I very much enjoyed The Crofoot’s Halloween Cover Band Fest, particularly Marco Polio turning Cure songs into Marco Polio songs and Prussia absolutely nailing The Pixies.

[insert natural transition here]

A long time ago I had a conversation with Josh Epstein (The Silent Years, some NASCAR band) about a bunch of stuff and bands and Detroit and music and probably, like, hot girls and sports and some other things that might make this sentence sound less douchey than it did when I started typing it, but I know for sure one of the things we discussed was Prussia. I’ve been a fan of Prussia LIVE since whenever the original Scrummage University existed but, uh…I always had a problem with their recordings. They weren’t “bad” or anything, I just felt that they weren’t anything that actually represented the band’s live sound and they consistently gave me bummerface.

Anyway, I told all this to Josh and he patiently listened while I slurred my words and probably spit everywhere and most likely lost my train of thought a few times, but then he said “I know. I agree. But I’m producing their next album so calm down, bro.”



Prussia. “Poor English“. This album…I fucking love it. I’m not going to throw adjectives around because I don’t know that many and also because I don’t actually know how to write about music but this one person (me) on this one blog (mine) considers Prussia‘s “Poor English” to be one of his favorite albums of the year.

I’ve spent all weekend with this album on repeat, trying to figure out which songs to post so you can all weigh in with your expert opinions, but the whole album sort of flows as one movement. Sort of. I dunno. Like I’ve said before, using words to describe music really isn’t my thing so here are some examples. “St Elmo’s Fire Pt. I” and “II” are two songs that sort of illustrate the album flow so I’m gonna post those, along with “Sleeper” because I love anytime Ryan Spencer screams the word “allegory”.

UPDATE: Oops. How about listen to these tracks instead and then watch a strange video of vocals being recorded!

Prussia – “What Am I Gonna Tell Your Mom?”

Prussia – “Mediator”

So there are some things, but I encourage you to listen to the entire album when it’s out…whenever it’s out. When does this come out?

[If you can't wait to hear more from this album, Jon Moshier will be playing another track this Friday and Sunday on WDET's Modern Music with Jon Moshier. Actually, I guess you still have to wait because Friday isn't for a few days. Sorry for misleading you.]
- Eat This City


Discography

Poor English (To Be Released in September 2011)
Prussia Goes to the Disco (Mixtape, 2010)
Blessed Be, Yours Truly in Spirit and Soul (Internet Only, 2008)
Dear Emily, Best Wishes, Molly (Vinyl, Internet, 2008)

Photos

Bio

Prussia‘s music is energetic, poppy- and melodious. You feel like dancing, though there’s no way in hell you would describe this as dance music. Waltzes, African drum beats, acapella breakdowns, and the gentle ringing of sleigh bells all fit into their unique arrangements naturally.
The band formed on the first day of 2007, practicing in the A. C. Rich, a DIY venue in Pontiac, Michigan. Prussia later became connected with the legendary Scrummage University, a DIY space in Detroit that is interconnected with other underground venues across the country.
Fiery Furnaces, Quasi, Dr. Dog, Black Heart Procession, Thunderbirds are now, Islands, Beach House, tUnE-YaRdS, and Dent May are among the many well-known bands that Prussia has played with.
The band are currently finishing their highly-anticipated new full-length album, Poor English. Swaggering drum loops, intricate guitar compositions, and buttery vocal harmonies all support the sweet nasal crooning of singer Ryan Spencer on the new album. Stories of suicide, misogyny, sexual vacancy, and the crippling ennui of illusory love all weave in and out of catchy pop songs. Lyrically, it’s T.S. Eliot’s drunken scribbling on a bathroom wall.
While mixing Poor English, the band also created Prussia Goes to the Disco, a mixtape of all new electronic Prussia songs. The simultaneous creation of two aesthetically different, but highly listenable releases proves that this is an unpredictable band that is going to do exactly what they want to do and that this is definitely for the best.
Four For Attention EP is out now. Look out for Sophomore LP this year.