The Rhodes
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The Rhodes


Band Rock Pop




"Cafe Chronogram / Muddy Cup Kingston - The Rhodes"

"The Rhodes Music
Kingston’s cavernous Muddy Cup will become Liverpool’s legendary Cavern Club when 2007 Woodstock Garage Rumble winners The Rhodes hit the stage in support of their wonderful new debut album, Modern Sounds from Northern Towns (Independent). Comprised of singer-guitarist Derek Daunicht, bassist Nick Imperial, singer-drummer David LaViola, and guitarist Rob Sciortino (all of whom are around 20 years of age), The Rhodes write and play great, well-crafted tunes that shamelessly, unmistakably, and infectiously evoke the lilting harmonies and raw energy of the early Beatles—something that’s clearly a hit with the High Falls-based quartet’s sizeable following of screaming and fruging young fans. Bet you’ll look good on the dancefloor, too!" - Patrick Winfield's Blog

"Time Warner Cable Channel 6, Featuring The Rhodes"

A video clip of Time Warner Cable Channel 6 news coverage of Garage Rumble 11.11.2007, with footage of The Rhodes, is available at: - Garage Rumble

"P.i.X. talks to Derek Daunicht of The Rhodes about MODSOU"

The P.i.X.= You've recently been recording your album "MODERN SOUNDS OF NORTHERN TOWNS". What was the experience like?

The Rhodes = It's interesting to sit back and hear our songs, without having to actually lift a finger. We can finally hear what our listeners hear. It's almost unbelievable. You sit around asking, 'wow, do I really sound like that?' You can sometimes make yourself crazy, listening to your own voice on record. "Ah, that's not how it sounds inside my head when I sing." And at some point, you have to come to terms with it and say, "Well, that's how it sounds. That's how I pronounce the word "morning," And we're proud of the record. We're glad to get these songs recorded, because after you've recorded them, it's like closure. You stretch. Ahhhh, now, clean slate. Let's make the next one even better. We've been playing these songs for a long time now, so it's nice to be taking the next step, which is to put 'em down on tape. It really is fantastic. None of the songs sound the same, there's no filler material, and there's a lot of variety in our music. We make that a point. I always hated it when I bought a record and majority of the songs sound the same. Can't stand that.

Q=You have a lot of energy when you play live. Was it hard to translate that energy on record?

A=Well, when you're on stage playing music, you are truly living for the moment. Your blood is pumping, and you see others out there enjoying themselves, and it just feeds back and forth. But a record is a whole different story. It literally is a permanent record of the noise you're making. And people don't see you singing or playing, and can't see visually if you're into it or not, so it's all about the sound, and the perception. Now that we've spent a good amount of time in the studio, we've learned things, it's more like... more like painting audible pictures than anything else, really.

But, even all the intention in the world doesn't mean shit, because the songs grow on their own. Songs you thought were softer songs, or downers, suddenly seem wild and you never really have too much control, or you sacrifice what comes naturally. You just do your parts, and with each part comes another piece of the puzzle. And after all the frustration is over with, after all the tedious hours, you've watched these songs grow from nothing into little artworks, it's a fantastic feeling. Like I said, we never really get a chance to sit back and listen to ourselves, so it's really fascinating. We sit around saying, "Wow, that's a great bassline!" or, "Man, that's a bitchin' drum fill." Things you never really thought of before. One thing people do on records to make up for lack of live-energy is to add effects, sounds, more instruments, different instruments. We did a little experimenting, but we were careful not to go overboard on our first serious record. As we mature as a band further, songs may take on more elaborate arrangements. You know the drill. We don't know where we'll end up, but our recorded history starts with this record, and we think it's a step in the right direction.

Q=Where did you learn all of your sweet dance moves?

A=Anything that appears to be a sweet dance move is probably just a lucky mistake. We move a lot, so, for every ten crazy movements we make, someone's bound to like one of them. But when no one's around, I do watch Motown groups perform and emulate them. Thanks, Jackson 5!

Q=How much does where you're from and where you grew up influence your music? What's it like living in Upstate NY?

A=We were raised on the rails of the Hudson River. A place where the fish wash up on the shore covered in chemicals and filth. Where nights are still, and you can see the glow of the bigger cities in the East, and you hear the distant, metal moan of another train passing through. Most people here never leave. And if they do, they just end up washing back up onto the shore again. A place where the criss-crossed phone lines over the town build a black spider's web from which nothing escapes. Anyone who aspires for greatness is pitied or laughed at. Our hometown is filling quickly with SUV-driving soccer moms, and things we had loved in our youth are being leveled by pavement as we speak. That's all there is here. Broken trees and roadkill and gravel and DWIs.

Q=What are your songs about? What inspires you lyrically? They seem to be mostly love songs...

A=Appear to be love songs. I mean, sometimes they are, but for the most part, they're antithesis love songs, or whatever you'd like to call them. Some songs just seem to write themselves. Most of the songs comment on the tendency of people to come and go constantly, which is something relative for us all. But The Rhodes don't call just to say we love you. "MODERN SOUNDS" is mostly about loss. Loss of love, of someone, of time, memories. And wanting to leave it all behind.

What really gets my rocks off is one of two things: saying something familiar in a way you've never heard it before, or, saying something you've never heard before in a familiar way. Songs like "Sweet Shady Lady" and "Against the Tracks" are two songs I'm proud of lyrically and musically. There are three types of songs in this world: songs to make you think, songs to make you feel, and songs to make you move. I'm proud to say that we can get away with all three.

Q=What would be the ultimate compliment someone could say about The Rhodes?

A=I always thought great music should give people some sort of hope, feel like they're not in it alone. Especially nowadays, when the music industry is akin to a room filled with a million people screaming at the top of their lungs, each trying to get heard. So a great compliment would be, "The Rhodes came around just in time; when there's nothing but radio bullshit as far as the eye can see, The Rhodes gave me hope." That, Karley, would be a fantastic compliment. - P.I.X Magazine (London, UK)

"A Trip Down The Rhodes Less Traveled"

A light yellow mini-school bus packed with amps, guitars and a drum set arrived to pick me up for my interview with the terrific local band, the Rhodes. I jumped in and joined all of the guys in the band.

The bus pulled out, blasting Aretha Franklin and the four members of the band, David LaViola (drums and vocals), Rob Sciortino (lead guitar), Derek Daunicht (rhythm guitar) and Vince Apuzzo (bass guitar) waved to the onlookers who stared at the weird bus.

The Rhodes, who are all between the ages of 18 and 22, struggle on a daily basis with the aspects of trying to run the band as a business as well as a creative endeavor.

Sitting in the basement of LaViola’s house, the Rhodes played their guitars, laughed and began talking about the trials and tribulations of the music business.

“Unfortunately a lot of good music is starting to die out and we are just trying to modernize it to keep it around,” said Sciortino.

Their music, influenced by artists such as Ray Charles, the Voidoids and James Jameson, is well written, soulful, rich and filled with lots of reference to the musical past.

“It’s a cross-pollination of all great music. That’s what our music is,” said Daunicht.

The band, which has been together for two and a half years, is continuously working to sustain itself and at the same time attempting to live normal lives with girlfriends and families who pull them in different directions.

“I don’t see any other bands in the New Paltz or Hudson Valley area that are on our level or that work as hard as we do gigging, and then on top of that write great material, deal with the accounting, the merchandizing, the graphic design, getting photos,” said LaViola. “We do everything that you could imagine for ourselves.”

Musicians today are constantly fighting to get noticed, and as the music industry becomes more fragmented, The Rhodes are struggling, too.

“The Internet is changing the music industry,” said Sciortino.

“It’s not changing for the better,” said LaViola. “It’s not changing it for the sake of the music. It’s changing it for the sake of the people that are Internet savvy and they are getting the attention of certain record companies, and I feel like that’s just bullshit.”

The Rhodes also struggle with the feeling of being outcasts as a band because of their unique sound and style.

“It’s difficult, we have no one alive to help base anything off of. The closest we get is the Libertines and we’re not even like them, we just like them. We are the only ones,” said Daunicht.

Their independence, perseverance and unique style has separated them from many other local bands in the area. - The New Paltz Oracle, Sarah Fine

"Band Of The Month"

Who: The Rhodes

What: A new rock band with an old time sound.

On the Web:

Sounds Like: The harmonies and soul of the Temptations with a modern, indie vibe

Standout Single: “Shakedown”

Reviewed by Deborah Singer
- Hear/Say: America's College Magazine

"Ferry 'Cross The Hudson: The Rhodes"

The band on stage is four fresh-faced young white men, all dressed in black, playing tough R&B and jangly, minor key ballads and chirping out scrappy-but-earnest four-part harmonies. It's textbook Merseybeat, and the audience is overwhelmingly high school-aged students swilling coffee, jumping around, dancing like their feet are on fire, and screaming along with the choruses. Is this the Cavern Club in 1962? Try again. One of the hundreds of U.S. teen clubs that sprang up in the wake of the British Invasion? Closer, but still off by more than 40 years. This is New Paltz, 2007 and the youthful quartet is The Rhodes, winners of this year's Garage Rumble.

"Yeah, we love The Beatles," says drummer and singer David LaViola. "But we actually listen more to the artists that influenced them: Sam Cooke, Little Richard, Ray Charles." You read right: These likely lads will take classic rhythm and blues over mall-bait emo any day.

"It's about timeless music," says singer and rhythm guitarist Derek Daunicht. "All great music should withstand the test of time, right? Stevie Wonder, Dylan, Johnny Cash, that's what we relate to. Much more than music by modern indie bands, even though I guess we technically are an indie band. You just got to have soul." Daunicht also cites Tom Waits as a favorite, while guitarist Robert Sciortino is a fan of Syd Barrett and The Libertines, and bassist Vince Apuzzo loves Charles Mingus and James Brown.

Ex-Highland High School students and area natives all, The Rhodes got together in 2006. "[LaViola] and I had been in a prog rock band before that," says Daunicht. "But after a while that music wasn't very fun to play."

"Or for the people in the audience to listen to," adds LaViola.

After testing the waters locally and recording a demo CD, the ambitious foursome set their sights on the Big Apple. Using a one-room apartment in Jackson Heights as a base, the band played every bar or club gig available at night and busked on the streets by day. The experience was humbling, to say the least. "In Queens, we mostly played for the drug dealers that were working the block," Daunicht says. "And in Thompson Square, some crazy squatter guy tried to break the drums." After months of urban reality the group moved back up north, reclaiming its slot on the local circuit and periodically trekking down to New York for gigs.

Last November the band performed in Woodstock's illustrious Garage Rumble, an annual battle of the bands organized by tireless musical matriarch Kristin Garnier and featuring mostly teenage players. Competing against eight other promising young groups, The Rhodes were crowned the best band, winning a session at Nevessa Studios in Saugerties and an appearance on Time Warner Cable's "Poughkeepsie Live."

"I think we played really well and the whole experience was really great," says LaViola. "And [Garnier] deserves a lot of credit for putting it together, she's a real powerhouse," offers Daunicht.

Not a band to rest on its laurels, The Rhodes have kept busy since the win, adding more and more shows to their itinerary and preparing to wax their debut disc. "It's time for us to make our own classic album," says LaViola. "And to show people what we think rock 'n' roll is all about."

The Rhodes will perform on January 25 and the last Friday of every month thereafter at the Muddy Cup in New Paltz.
- Jan 2008 issue of Roll Magazine, written by Peter Aaron

"CD Review: The Rhodes Modern Sounds Of Northern Towns"

The Rhodes Modern Sounds Of Northern Towns
(Independent , 2008)

If Hudson Valley quartet the Rhodes’ debut CD, Modern Sounds of Northern Towns, was programmed with LP surface noise, you would not be faulted for thinking it was a lost collection of circa 1965 Merseybeat gems. Unlike most bands who wear their influences on their sleeve, however, the Rhodes sound as if they are one-upping their Liverpudlian heroes with particularly swooping melodies, offbeat chord changes, and unpredictable, rich harmonies. The 10 tunes—which clock in at just under 32 minutes—amount to a bracing debut that sounds remarkably fresh, crackling with energy and boasting top-notch tunesmithery by guitarist Derek Daunicht and drummer David LaViola. Although, like their British Invasion antecedents, this band sounds weaned on the tight harmonies of the Everly Brothers, the pulse of Motown, and the mischievous ’tude of Chuck Berry, there is a modern, feral rawness that comes across on Modern Sounds.

“When Your Baby’s Gone” and “Shakedown” are full-on Cavern Club rave-ups, while the snaky, minor key “Sweet Shady Lady” and the mournful “Oh Angie” are delivered as only romantic 20-somethings can do. All four members sing with impressive chops and no song is without a seamless harmony (often two), even jokey ersatz country ditty “Joe, Johnny, or Jack.” Props go to producer Jon Stern, who knows songwriting like this doesn’t require additional bells and whistles. The fact that the Rhodes—all born in the ’80s—have put together such a committed, infectious addition to the power-pop canon, free of sampling, pitch correction, and other modern conveniences, is a marvel.

—Robert Burke Warren - Chronogram Magazine


2010 - untitled acoustic (LP)

1) Sweet Shady Lady (tape)
2) When She Ghost
3) She Had To Leave
4) Lauretta
5) After It's Over
6) I'll Be Around
7) How Long? / Conclusion
8) Don't Be Late


1) All You've Got To Do
2) How Long?


1) When Your Baby's Gone
2) She Had To Leave
3) Sweet Shady Lady
4) Shakedown
5) When She Goes
6) Against The Tracks
7) Oh Angie
8) Joe, Johnny Or Jack
9) Call On Me
10) Don't Be Late



THE RHODES are a blast from the future. They are the music of tomorrow... but even sooner.

Countless musics have shaped The Rhodes' tastes; some notable influences are Of Montreal, Atlas Sound, Elliott Smith, The Kinks, Richard Hell and The Voidoids, T. Rex, MGMT, and The Velvet Underground.

Their lilting four-part harmonies, minor key ballads and jangly rhythm and blues make the Rhodes a new link in the future of American music.