Ravenous
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Ravenous

New York City, New York, United States

New York City, New York, United States
Band Rock Punk

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"STPP on Ravenous"

I am a big fan of ‘90s indie rock. It all began in 1991 with a cassette tape of the Pixies’ Doolittle. From there, I jumped onto Pavement, Built to Spill, Guided by Voices… you know, the stalwarts of lo-fi and American indie rock. The band Ravenous reminds me of those glory years. To be more precise: if Sam Coomes of Quasi fronted for Ultimate Alternative Wavers-era Built to Spill, you would know what this band sounds like.

Splendid is a fun, fuzz-soaked and rocking trip back to my beloved era of indie rock. If the blurb about Sam Coomes puts you off (many of my music friends cannot take his unique nasally delivery), you are missing something special. The vocals grow on you. Trust me.

After a short intro, the fun begins rather quietly with “Hiway, Holmes” but the track quickly spirals into a beautiful calamity of guitars and a jam-worthy rhythm. The dramatic shifts that Ravenous employs with great effect in their songs keep you guessing, and ultimately keep you listening.

“Miami Viceroys” is a beautifully off-kilter song. It resonates in that familiar ‘90s indie rock guitar sound that Built to Spill made famous. The same can be said for “WWBMD” (What Would Bill Murray Do), a punchy and lurching song that captures the feel of BTS but morphs into a stunning and screaming guitar explosion that would be quite welcome on an Archers of Loaf record.

I have name-dropped a few of my favorite ‘90s bands; therefore, I will not be bucking the trend when I compare “The Dock” to a Robert Pollard song. It has the rocking atmosphere and characteristics of some of Guided by Voices’ more rollicking and drunken tunes. It is a rock and roll anthem that chugs along and makes me want to grab a beer. High praise, indeed.

Ravenous delivers a wonderful homage to my favorite era of indie rock. I am looking forward to what they do next. - Sweet Tea Pumpkin Pie


"Fuzzy Logic on Ravenous"


Times are tough out there, and for many of us buying music has become quite an indulgence (albeit a necessary one). Happily, there are some lovely musician folk out there that have offered up some fruits of their labors to the masses, free of charge. Free For All celebrates these wonderful people, and you, dear reader types.

DC is one heck of a transient place, so it's not at all unexpected to get an email from bands formerly of the area and now of distant lands. One such band to holler at your girl of late is a little band called Ravenous. Introducing themselves as "Pavement/Flaming Lips/Modest Mouse rager" makers, I was instantly intrigued. Right away the Pavement thing is evident, the transplanted Brooklynites putting forth much of that tasty, jarring noisiness and Malkmus-esque vocals to pair nicely with all that big bite.

All three songs on the Irony Gymnasium single are appealingly off-kilter, loud as you want, and entirely pleasing to the ear. Ragers, if you will. They might have left DC, but those Ravenous boys are still pretty rad. - Fuzzy Logic


"The Sound of Confusion on Ravenous"

Music often goes in cycles. What's deeply unfashionable one minute will most likely be de rigueur in a few years time. Just look at all those hideous 80s synth-pop acts that suddenly we're allowed to like again. In the past couple of years that cycle has jumped ahead a little to the 90s. Not Britpop or the boring bit at the end, we're talking early 90s, particularly the US alternative scene; grunge, college rock, sludgy guitars, plaid shirts and unkempt hair. This debut album from Brooklyn-based quartet Ravenous doesn't so much look back on that period for inspiration, it may as well have got lost in the mail for twenty years, handily resurfacing at just the right time to dive head first into the revival.

It's as if Pavement, Beck, The Beastie Boys and Sonic Youth spent a laid back week jamming together and buried the tapes in a time capsule. It feels more like a relic than a throwback, and surely this is to its credit; while others use Evan Dando, early Flaming Lips and Sugar as references, these guys use them as a blueprint and their recreation is, indeed, 'Splendid'. It's an album loaded with discord with vocals so American it could only have been made on that side of the Atlantic, as could some of the song titles ('Miami Viceroys', 'Irony Gymnasium'). Guitars are set to 'squalling sludge' and the drums are set to 'just thrash the hell out of the bastards'. The lyrics are witty and surreal but never cheesy or goofy.

They almost trick us into thinking a ballad is on its way on 'Ugly Fish' before a cacophony of noise routinely interrupts the slightly ironic talk of fishes and cats. Slacker anthems abound, with 'Miami Viceroys' being particularly effective. 'The Hardest Blues' almost finds Ravenous being contemplative and introspective. To the tune of feedback and cymbals being assaulted of course. On 'We're All Fucked' they actually manage it, and the relentless scuzz is broken briefly, before 'The Dock' kicks in and provides a real highlight. It's not just the sounds that these guys have learnt to master, they know how to write a tune too. It may be a blast from the past, but the important fact is that it's just a blast full stop. - The Sound of Confusion


"Sirens of Decay on Ravenous"

Noise can be many things. Annoying, beautiful, relaxing, eerie – it can literally set a mood and change it. This is nothing any sane person doesn’t already know. Noise is also used in the creation of the greatest thing (in this blogger’s opinion)…rock. For those who are about to listen, prepare yourself for some serious noise.

Have you ever heard of Ravenous? I hadn’t either. Their e-mail introducing themselves was about as colorful as you would expect – particularly when you check out their cover art for Splendid, their debut album. I always have a soft spot for those unorthodox intros though; they catch my eye and get me to listen, that’s for sure. Ravenous are a half Brooklyn, half DC band which seem to combine the grunge I grew up with, the garage rock I love now, a bit of pop sensibility and the reckless abandon you’d associate with people who swallow fire and fly trapeze.

In summary, Ravenous are not going to sound like anything else you’ve heard on this blog and probably not much like any other indie music blog submission.

“Miami Viceroys” begins with wailing vocals and riff that will both remind you a bit of The Pixies, but the guitars have this weird twang that could be anything from whimsy to southern drawl inflected on a guitar. I honestly don’t know. I’m not a guitarist. What I do know is it sounds excellent. Later on, there’s even a breakdown that is a bit more conventional for those of you who like that kind of thing.

Also on Splendid is the interestingly titled “Summer Stench”. It sounds more grimy than summery, but when the chorus does hit it can give you a bit of that summer vibe…if grunged out surf rock is your kind of beach soundtrack. As I listen to Ravenous I can’t help but wonder what exactly the songs are discussing, while simultaneously realizing that not only am I not a guitarist, I’m not a lyricist either. I’ll just sticks to what sounds good and hope you’ll agree. It’s worked out so far, right?

Ravenous are definitely worth a look if you want a change of pace from your regular sound niche. I’m pretty sure you’ll find them splendid. I guarantee they are having more fun than either of us, and if you look past the chaos of these tracks (or into it) you’ll find some good tunes you might just love.

You can pick up Splendid on the band’s bandcamp page for any price you want to pay…or free! Also, Ravenous can be found ravaging timelines on Facebook. - Sirens of Decay


"The Deli on Ravenous"

Sitting comfortably in that noisy space lying between Modest Mouse, Flaming Lips and Pavement, post-punk trio Ravenous takes the hard knocks of life head on in delightfully named tracks like 'We're All Fucked.' After getting through this undeniably catchy number, I've no doubt you'll agree: this kind of grimy, slacker alt-rock vibe is pretty much the only way to sing a song like this properly.

Like their peers before them, the band excels at remaking life's suckiness into something infinitely more enjoyable. Though they reside in DC now, the band must miss their lonely hearts days in Bushwick, as this seems to come up quite a bit in their fantastic new Irony Gymnasium EP.

But don't expect to find any love songs here. The band makes that abundantly clear in the bottom-heavy album opener 'Irony Gymnasium:' "I don't write any love songs, cuz love don't rhyme with me." So be it. Lucky for us, the band has plenty of crap to make fun of to keep the anthems rocking for a long time to come. - The Deli National


"YVYNYL on Ravenous 1/2"

"Just got passed some great demos from the band and this song grabbed me instantaneously. Talk about summertime soundtrack music! Some of the best Pavement inspired lo-fi noise pop I’ve heard in a while. If this Maryland-based group keeps stirring things up like this (also be sure to listen to the track “Highway, Holmes” on their myspaces), I’m certain we’ll be hearing a lot more about them. Kudos, boys."

- YVYNYL


"YVYNYL on Ravenous 2/2"

Ravenous! Highly recommend you checking out these Silver Springs, MD bros. Been a fan for a while… I included the B-side of this 7” “Saltwater Taffy (The Dock)” on my Handstands mixtape and the A-side is just as killer. Rock n’ fuckin’ roll, kids. - YVYNYL


"Dingus on 7in"

I didn’t realize how absolutely gross pop rock could sound until I put on Ravenous’ ‘Miami Viceroys’ single, but I’ve learned my lesson in the intervening minutes. Initially just thankful that they weren’t a death metal band, I very quickly came to appreciate Ravenous’ brand of low end, caustic pop. There are certain effects that you get off of different instruments, usually from recording directly into a digital interface as opposed to recording through an amp and microphone, and Ravenous play off of this sonic catastrophe quite nicely. Certain sound effects and ambiances will come through with almost overwhelming clarity, and guitars will often sound as though they’ve been digitally parsed into neat little jangles and left to muck about somewhere in the background. Ravenous take this underwhelming aural feature and turn it into outright, bombastic nastiness.

But it’s sweet, too. Given any more salient a treatment, this single might not be much more artistically viable than late-’90s pop punk, but the relative mainstream appropriation of the songwriting is offset quite jarringly by almost hardcore noise ideologies as far as recording and mixing are concerned. This is not to say that the songs themselves sound overly standard: ‘Saltwater Taffy (The Dock)’ is undercurrented by one of the most severely post rock guitar continuations, itself vibrantly offset by a post-Halen solo that manages to escape the confines of fidelity in order to creep around in your headspace, almost choking you with guitar pop goodness.

Vocally, Ravenous kind of play off the self-assuredly not hip-hop lyrical vibe that picked up in the late ’90s and early 2000s and probably made a lot of people uncomfortable. The almost They Might Be Giants-attuned vocal stylings jut uncomfortably against the Pixies-level squeal of the guitars, and this discomfiture helps the low-end production pop into full, touchable frame. I don’t know much about Ravenous, but I can tell you that they love the ’90s, and I can guarantee that this isn’t a bad thing.

get physical if…
-you were really affected by the Dynamite Hack version of “Boys in the Hood”
-you’ve been pitching a sludgerock/noisecore Toadies cover band for years
-You still smile when “Eruption” comes on 104.3

just stream it if…
-You prefer the guitar stylings of one Yngve Malmsteen
-You think Pavement counts as “lo fi”
-Ravenous sounds like the name of a band you would eagerly listen to

I’m going to call this…
“The 90s, Forced Through A Jet Engine”
- Dingus on music


"Reader Rec: RAVENOUS @ Galaxy Hut"

Flyin’ first class into Galaxy Hut on Monday is the Silver Spring band Ravenous, whose edgy sound and spry antics will leave you hungry for more.
Their debut show at the Red and the Black last month had fans spilling over into the stairway, eager to infuse themselves with energy from what promises to be a solid addition to the DC music scene.
The newcomers – Alex, Ben, Mattson and Taylor – bring a raw, unpolished sound that harkens toward Spoon and The Rentals. Their angular, angry rhythms are reminiscent of Weezer; they give way to introspective, playful lyrics.
“I lit a candle for a saltwater sage,” Ravenous sings in “Saltwater Taffy (The Dock).” “He mixed cocktails from a martian; everybody got laid.”
- Brightest Young Things


"Ravenous"

"Most of the time sifting through my e-mails is a labouring and ultimately unrewarding task of "deleting" viagra order forms and contemplating whether to send my amounted wealths to "Mr. Okereke" in exchange for even more amounted wealth once Mr. Okereke gets his hands on all that oil he's been sitting on for years.

Sometimes though, it's refreshing to see that someone doesn't want to make my penis larger and more effective or make me a rich bastard. Sometimes someone just has a bit of music that is a bit good.

Like Ravenous.

Ravenous got in touch and sent me some of their songs. A few of which I thought i'd share with you. Just because unselfishness is a virtue.

These boys are from Silver Spring in that big America place, which apparently is near Baltimore, where the geezerest geezer aka. Stringer Bell used to live

Anyway. I really like their song 'Saltwater Taffy (The Dock)'. Check it out. For some crazy reason it really reminds me of 'Tranquilize' from The Killer's collaboration with Lou Reed"


- Andygoesdowntochinatown


"Ravenous"

"Ravenous are pretty sweet. Straight out of DC, they make jams I can only describe as sludgey, slimey lo-fi classic rock in a sunny swamp. Think Cloud Nothings if they had been listening to a lot of Boston. Coincidentally 'Highway, Holmes' sounds like something you'd listen to on a hazy sunrise as you're driving along the highway on the first five minutes of yr epic road trip. Good noise bros."

- Honolulu Dreams


"Two Cool New Bands: Left & Right and Ravenous"

"Ravenous are from Brooklyn, though only recently so, I believe. This band sounds like your older brother’s high school band. I don’t mean to come off negative here- just hold on a few more sentences- but the singer’s voice pushes the tolerably-whiny envelope, all the parts are a little sloppy, and some of the guitar parts rely really, really heavily on cheesy effects pedals. I don’t think these guys are your typical Bushwick arty-hipsters-in-residence. But seriously- these aren’t bad things. Remember how awesome you thought your older brother’s band was when your were a freshman and he was a senior? Remember how triumphantly fun and un-self-conscious those songs were? Well, Ravenous is sort of like that, but all supported by very good songwriting that’s way more experienced than an 18 year old’s. Take a listen to “Saltwater Taffy (The Dock).” That is an excellent song. It’s got the perfect kind of build that makes me want to burn it onto a cd a bunch of times in a row and drive around for an hour aimlessly. I think this band is still searching for their own sound, but they’ve got a lot of great influences in there (I hear a lot of Pavement and a lot of Weezer), and I can’t wait to see how they progress." - New York Rock Market


"SXSW - Lights, Camera, Dancin' (Pt.1)"

"Ravenous @ Casa Chapala

Ravenous are a three piece band from Brooklyn, NY. Mattson Ogg’s vocal range is as original as Isaac Brock’s from Modest Mouse; it fits perfectly with Alex Becker’s percussion and Taylor Bragg and Ogg’s own guitar/bass. I can't say I've heard such creative lyrics since Okkervil River's Black Sheep Boy album. Much like Foe Destroyer, these guys seemed to instantly attract a lot of people to their music and bring them in off the street." - CJLO


"Listening Party: Ravenous."

I've heard a lot of things about Ravenous: "They're DC's answer to Pavement!", "Ben Field-Pickering is such a babe", "They're the best local band you've never seen", and "Oh Ravenous? They have the most outstanding band tumblr in the history of the world."

We thought it was time we give you a listen and gently remind you that Ravenous opens for the Capstan Shafts this Wednesday at DC9.

Here's Ravenous' very own Mattson to break down their Miami Viceroys 7"' that came out today. - BrightestYouthThings


"Ravenous"

"if the flaming lips were hanging out with weezer and then going to a party that guided by voices is hosting but THEY'RE house sitting for neil young. and that this all took place in the 90s...and neil young put out his teeth into a jar on his bedside table...and just when he closed his eyes these guys stole it...and went to a party where they play the guitars with his false teeths"

http://alleveryone.blogspot.com/2010/04/ravenous.html - All, Everyone, United


Discography

Debut Full Length LP: Splendid
Irony Gymnasium Single
Miami Viceroys 7inch vinyl single

Photos

Bio

Ravenous is a noisy Sludge Pop troupe originally from outside DC now living in Brooklyn. It’s the sound of friends and pop catharsis. Notes are layered methodically, but messy. The details are in the noise and the amps are full blast. 6 pack heavy. Why make it complicated? This is what fun is. Just hit the notes as hard as possible can and let the feedback do the rest. If they weren't doing this they'd be hanging out drinking beer together. Why not do both?