Telenovela Star
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Telenovela Star

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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Whats A Telenovela?"

When I give you my money / I wanna hear you say what I want you to /
And act like you mean it baby / or I won’t believe you /
Telenovela Star – Le Plum Deux

I was not paid to write this review. It might seem that way because it’s glowing, but the truth is I really dig this record and I think you will, too. Now, most local bands I find intriguing see me at virtually every show they perform. Not so Telenovela Star. In the two years of their present incarnation, I’ve seen them twice; once at their debut in the trash can that is the Siberia club’s basement and once this past January at The Delancey, a wonderful club that also just happens to be in a basement.

Four years ago, when you could still enjoy a musical revue and a cigarette at the same time, I caught the previous iteration of the band, Telenovela. At the time the trio was two scruffy dudes on guitar and drums, and a chick with her hair in her face on bass. By the time I grabbed a friend for that Siberia show, two years had passed, they’d tacked “Star” onto their name and dropped the dudes. Here now was Telenovela Star with bassist and vocalist Hanna Klein, Nikkie McLeod beating the skins, and Maggie Argyros on guitar and vocals.

This past January, with a free Saturday in my pocket and braving arctic temperatures, I caught their Delancey show. There, one year after its release and directly from the band I received my first hard copy of their music: The Telenovela Star EP. Since then those tracks have accompanied me everywhere I go. I’ll tell you why.

Their vocal stylings aren’t spectacular and they’re not a flashy ensemble with themed outfits at every show or musicians who spout some bullshit concept when asked about their music. But, Telenovela Star is the epitome of “band.” Each member is a talent in their own right. No, they’re not virtuosi, but they are incredibly good. Few groups, live or recorded, possess their ability to play together, to sound like one instrument with purpose.

At the same time, their songwriting and musicality enable them to showcase one another individually. They’ll give the guitar space in one song, or emphasize the bass-percussion unit in another, or blend the instruments and vocals in such a way as to highlight the best of each. In many ways, each woman as an instrumentalist takes the styles of music prevalent around them and carries those styles forward in startling directions.

Often current guitarists are boring and uninventive. With this beautiful modern history of amazing players to learn from, you still don’t often hear great melodies or a good riff. Modern rockers present neither adaptation nor ornamentation. If you want to go local and find out for yourself, just search the rock section of MySpace, or turn to your favourite major music outlet and listen to what’s popular. It’s pathetic.

Maggie is none of these things, plus she’s from my own neighbourhood of Astoria. It’s sad that technical ability would be something notable merely for its presence, but I find it truly impressive. She’s not flashy, but her style is perfect both in and out of the context of the band. Her full-on guitar lines are hard and always to the point. And another thing: distortion. She doesn’t overdo it, she does it just right. I love distortion done just right.

Her solos and vocals are, however, thin in relation to the rest of the work evidenced on the EP. Certainly one doesn’t need a Joe Satriani playing when the band breaks it down, but the songs in which she’s out front don’t display the same level of creativity found in the rest of her work. The singing rather just requires some more power. Techniques not a big deal here, but power is. On “Same Mistake” you can hear her get there a few times and I’d love to hear more of it.

Now, I’ve been listening to rock for many years, and in that time I’ve heard many an amazing percussionist. I’ve also heard a lot of competent ones, and by that I mean they’ll meet the obligation of providing rhythm, but go no further. Coming from a background as a jazz musician, I’ve played with a lot of heavy drummers.

I would gladly jump on stage to play with Nikkie McLeod. She lays down complex, heavy, and completely rock rhythms. Easily adaptable, she moves elegantly through song forms more variegated than verse/chorus/verse/chorus, which are themselves a testament to the songwriting of the band. When you need a straight up, four on the floor rhythm though, there she is dishing it out with no compunctions whatsoever. She and Hanna, with a couple of exceptions on “A Plum,” are also tightly integrated, acting more like a rhythm section than separate instruments.

Speaking of the bass, what you usually find is that it is there for harmonic coherence and isn’t something to be noticed. Often it just backs up the guitars, droning on and on with the root of the chord. That has its place, but few people seem to step out of those shackles and provide something interesting to the ear, add - Axes and Alleys Magazine

"Telenovela Star Returns with New CD, NYC Gigs"

Music News

Telenovela Star Returns with New CD, NYC Gigs
by Kilian Melloy
EDGE New York City Contributor
Monday Oct 22, 2007

The female trio that are Telenovela Star are set to spring their first full-length album on the world, and New York will see the ladies live in action twice in early November.

Formed in 2004 by way of Craig’s List and a fortuitously well-meshing complex of musical tastes, Telenovela Star’s debut EP, Telenovela Star, gave rise to The Car Song, which was promptly adopted as the theme for the N! Channel’s drama, Beyond the Break.

Now Hanna Klein, Maggie Argyros, and Nikkiesha McLeod are back with Love, Lust, Sci-Fi, and Monsters, a ten-track CD with five additional "B-sides" included on the disc for 15 songs in all.

Described as "manic" and "diverse," the new album has drawn comparison to The Pixies, PJ Harvey, The Cure, and Veruca Salt, among others. Songs like Vampire, Fluff, and Planet Cuckoonuts are already stirring up chatter.

Telenovela Star is scheduled to appear in Brooklyn at NY Southpaw at 8:00 p.m. on Nov. 8, then to perform at NY Fontanas in New York City, at 8:00 p.m. on Nov. 16.

As the press release has it, "Telenovela Star is a quintessential New York band. It maybe a melting pot cliché, but then again that’s why this city works."

Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary for EDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.

Copyright © 2003-2007
EDGE Publications, Inc. / All Rights Reserved
- Edge Publications

"The N Soundtrack Review"

Music Review: The-N's First Soundtrack
Written by: CallmeMaddy
Published August 26, 2006

See also:
» Music Review: Vader - Impressions In Blood
» Music Review: Material - One Down
» Music Review: The Alexander Quartet - Ludwig Van Beethoven Complete String Quartets

A lot of teenagers' lives revolve around music. I will be shocked if I don’t see at least five people in every class at school listening to their iPod instead of the teacher. (Even though it’s against the rules.) This, of course, was never me. Okay, maybe it was sometimes me, but only when I was forced to watch Spanish soap operas

The-N, a MTV-like network for teens, is reaching out to their main audience by releasing their first ever soundtrack with music from shows like Degrassi, Instant Star, Beyond the Break, South of Nowhere, and Whistler. It is due out August 29. The soundtrack features eleven songs and comes with bonus scenes from the hit show, Beyond the Break. I did not get to see the video, which makes me depressed, because I have the press sample. So now I have to figure out if it’s worth it to buy the CD for the sneak peak.

Track one is the extended Degrassi theme song. I liked how Degrassi theme is finally available. It started out good. The chorus was awesome... but then they started rapping. I hate rapping. I don’t care what you say, it’s not music. So, I demoted the song from good to stick to the shortened version.

Track two is “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield. To be perfectly honest, I didn’t like it. I’m not big fan of Natasha Bedingfield. Her voice sounded hoarse. The lyrics were okay, but not enough to save the song.

Up next, track number three, is “Not Even Close” by David Kopatz (Degrassi: The Next Generation). It was very fun to listen to. The beat was very catchy and the song immediately grabbed my attention.

Featured next was “What You’re Missin’” by Cheaza (South of Nowhere). It’s a good song, but totally not my style. I like pop, rock, even country... not this. I can’t stand Hip Hop or Rap or whatever this is.

Lucky number five was “Do What You Do” by Drake (AKA Aubrey Graham, Jimmy on Degrassi: the Next Generation). Aubrey Graham should stick to acting. I don’t know what that was. I think it was an attempt at rap. Moving on...

Next was my personal favorite, “The Car Song” by Telenovela Star, Theme Song of Beyond the Break. Want to know the reason I gave Beyond the Break a chance? I was planning not to watch it, but the theme song came on and Degrassi was over, so I turned it on. That’s right, the show gained a viewer because of this song. It's awesome. I love it. Easy to dance to. Loved it when I first heard it watching Beyond The Break and loved listening to it now.

Number seven is called, “I Don’t Want to Know (If You Don’t Want Me)” by The Donnas
(South of Nowhere) This grabbed my attention immediately. I don’t watch the show, so I’ve never heard of this. Now I’m tempted to watch South of Nowhere because of their good music.

The-N picked “Ordinary Day” by the Dirtmitts as track eight. “Ordinary Day” is the theme song of the new show, Whistler. It was pretty good. I think the nice melody won me over. Although, the singer certainly helped.

“24 hours”, track nine, is by Alexz Johnson, star of Instant Star. The reason I don’t watch Instant Star is because, from the commercials, it seems like Alexz Johnson is a horrible actress. But I gotta hand it to her, she nailed this song. I was shocked, because I didn’t want to listen to it because I thought she was going to be a horrible singer. I was wrong. I will now bow down to Alexz.

Two more to go. Track ten is from Beyond the Break. It’s called “Goodbye” and it’s by the Sansaysas. Hmm...I don’t know about this one. It’s not particularly bad, but it’s not the kind of song I would put on my iPod.

The final song to make the cut is “Hold On” by South of Nowhere’s Mandy Musgrave. The song’s okay, but way too slow for my taste.

I was upset they didn’t feature some of the songs of the stars of Degrassi (besides Aubrey Graham’s lame attempt at rap). Degrassi has many stars who can sing and have sang on the show. Jake Epstein, Craig, does a lot of singing for the show. He is incredibly good and I wished they would have put him on. Another example is Lauren Collins. Lauren plays Paige on Degrassi. Her character gets raped, and, after, her band writes a song about it. She sings the song (called “Poor Thing”) and does a great job. My sister and I own that season on DVD and we like to fast forward and watch only that part. It would have been cool for her to be on the disk.

If you have mixed feelings about buying the CD, you can go to the-N and sample the songs. The main thing I found was that the songs are very different. There are some songs I liked and others I want to erase from my memory because they were so bad. For this reason, I would suggest buying some of the songs off iTunes and buy songs depending on -

"EP Review"

Telenovela Star EP review
By Mary Ann Naylor

Super Fantastic

In another instance of fate transacting on Craigslist, this NYC tri-borough trio united through the online institution.

Hanna Klein (bass, vocals), Magdalena Argyros “Maggie” (guitar, vocals) and Nikkiesha McLeod “Nikkie” (drums) met in the spring of 2004 at Smash Studios, and right off, they knew they would create something special together.

Their individual backgrounds are truly diverse and bring a rare mix to indie-rock. Maggie was raised all around Queens, though her history is on the isle of Corfu, Greece. She dabbled a little with guitar when she was just 16, but put it away to make a go at stage acting. 12 years later she picked up the guitar again and hasn’t turned back! Maggie discovered her love of songwriting after joining her first band 5 years ago, where she played rhythm guitar, synths, and began singing backup vocals.

Nikkie was born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago. She moved to the US at age 19 and promptly started a 6 year career as a punk rocker in the DC/Maryland area. She started drumming at 9, and went on to be part of a steel pan orchestra of 100 players when she was in Trinidad. It’s Nikkie’s beats that are the foundation of Telenovela Star, changing the flavor from chill R& B, Funk and hop-hop undertones to innovative alt-rock beats.

Hanna was born in Transylvania, and through a “lucky government deal” she found herself in Baton Rouge, then in Massachusetts, then to Japan, and has reluctantly settled in NYC. Hanna was required to play piano as a little girl, and got her first bass at a pawnshop for $900, which her mother got her - perhaps as a thank you for enduring the many years of forced piano playing. She has been playing in bands for the last 6+ years at venues around NYC.

Telenovela Star is, simply, hot! The thunderous drum beats, cool guitar riffs, and sassy, strong and coolly commanding vocals set them apart from many indie-rock acts. Le Plum Deux features Romeo Void-esque guitar elements, which immediately endeared us to the song, and months later, it remains on our list of one of the hottest songs of 2006 to date.

Their EP was recorded in December 2005 and within a few weeks of sending out promo’s, “The Car Song” was chosen as the theme music for a new series on a Beyond the Break, a major cable network show about competitive female surfing that started airing last month. The band has plans to return to the studio later this year to begin work on their first full length album, and will continue performing in NYC and all around the Northeast. We can’t wait to hear what’s next for this impressive all-girl FORCE!

By Mary Ann Naylor + Church of Girl
16 May 2006

"LIVE Review"

Live Review:
Telenovela Star 6/20/06
Beg Your Pardon #2

first up is telenovela star, a power trio in the vein of mid to late 90s lady rock a la throwing muses. you remember those days, if you were a girl you were so psyched because it was something that YOU might be able to do, & if you were a guy, you found yourself thinking: "girls playing guitars. look good. sound nice. drool." or something like it.

but lest you think that telenovela star are some kind of nostalgic throwback thanks to this lazy reference point, keep in mind that singer/guitarist maggie t-star's vocals, coolly levelheaded whispered threats/self-reproachments, are paired with a biting guitar style that sounds nothing like her singing. & since usually with singer/guitarists it's the aural equivalent of dogs & their owners in that they resemble one another, I'm curious to see how this fantastic duality works live. go check out a plum on their my space page. - Soft Communication


Telenovela Star
Self Titled EP
Released: December 2005

Tracks listing:
"Le Plum Deux"
"Car Song"
"A Plum"
"It Was Ugly Most of the Time"
"The Same Mistake"

Telenovela Star
Love, Lust, Sci-fi & Monsters"
Released: July 2007

Track Listing:
"Dr. Who"
"You're All Over Me"
"Come Over"
"Antonio's Home"
(Side B's)

EP Radio Promo 2006:
Radio San Francisco, CA #12
CFUR Prince George, BC #19
CILU Thunder Bay, ON #16
CKXU Lethbridge, AB #22
KCSU Fort Collins, CO #15
KSUA Anchorage, AK #14
KSVR Seattle, WA #5
KTCV Yakima, WA #18
KTRL Dallas, TX #9
KWCR Salt Lake City, UT #12
KZFR Chico, CA #19
WCKS Grand Rapids, MI #16
WCWP New York, NY #17
WFPC Boston, MA #20
WIDB St. Louis, MO #15
WLCA St. Louis, MO #9

In addition, added to over 70 college stations



A simple ad on Craigslist brought Telenovela Star (T*, T-star) together in Spring 2004. Their complex backgrounds and musical interests instantly clicked, creating a sound that immediately appealed to all three. They share a deep passion for merging genres Ð loud indie rock, hip/hop, r&b, and syncopated jazz rhythms, under catchy, smart, angry and at times sad melodies.

In December 2005 Telenovela Star released their first record, a self-titled EP. Within a few weeks of the release, the intense, upbeat track "Car Song" was selected as theme music for "Beyond the Break," a new drama on The N! channel about competitive female surfers. The show aired June 2006 and has continued into a 2nd season. The song was also included on "The N Soundtrack" released in Fall 2006.

Their current full-length release "Love, Lust, Sci-Fi & Monsters", is a wildly diverse follow-up to their EP. Check out the powerful 1st track "Fluff", the soulful "Vampire", and the party favorite "Sucker".