The result of a two-year residency on the Lower East Side’s Delancey Street station, Pinc Louds pair together jazz ballads with broken bottles, doo-wop harmonies with drunk phone calls, and punk ditties with public announcements. With her sweet and raspy voice, lead singer Claudi sings a coming-of-gender story, a search for soul, body, and a man called Miguel Segura. She urges you to capture dreams, welcome werewolves, and let roaches in your hair, like you just don’t care.
Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum
“We never set out to start a band,” says Peter Yanowitz, one third of the avant-indie trio Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum. “It feels more like the band started us.”
Recorded spontaneously for the sheer joy of creation and collaboration, Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum’s captivating self-titled debut showcases the magic that can happen when three consummate artists commit themselves to fully inhabiting the present, to following their muse without boundaries or restrictions. The songs here are adventurous, with bold, experimental arrangements that incorporate everything from distorted synth rock and ethereal electronics to dreamy folk and R&B. It’s an intoxicating mix, one that transcends genre as it draws equal strength from the remarkably disparate backgrounds of its progenitors.
“We all bring something unique to the project,” says vocalist Michael C. Hall. “We’re a three-legged stool; we couldn’t stand up without all of us working together.”
While Hall may be the most recognizable face in the band—he was nominated for an Emmy for his work on the HBO drama Six Feet Under, won both a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors Guild Award for the acclaimed Showtime series Dexter, and was selected by David Bowie to star in his musical, Lazarus)—his bandmates boast similarly prodigious resumes. Yanowitz began his career playing drums in The Wallflowers before going on to co-found indie stalwarts Morningwood and work with artists as varied as Natalie Merchant, Yoko Ono, Andrew W.K., Allen Ginsberg, and Billy Bragg & Wilco, who enlisted him to perform on their seminal ‘Mermaid Avenue’ collaboration. Keyboardist Matt Katz-Bohen, meanwhile, spent the last decade touring and recording with Blondie, in addition to working with the likes of Boy George and Cindy Lauper.
The trio’s collaboration began innocently enough, with a series of late-night studio hangs fueled by a shared love of pushing art into uncharted territories. Taking their name from a phrase suggested by Katz-Bohen’s daughter, the group constructed an entire world for their music, imagining the Butterfly Museum as a physical space brought to life with the help of legendary mixer Tom Elmhirst (Adele, The xx). Delivered with dense harmonies atop a solemn organ pad, EP opener “Don’t” represents both an atmospheric invitation into the museum’s shimmering halls and an ideal introduction to a band that delights in toying with expectation. “Vicious,” for instance, begins as an explosive dose of heavy rock before dissolving into a classically-inspired interlude, while the hypnotic “Ketamine” builds from hushed intimacy to frenetic energy, and the sleek “Come and Talk to Me” blends pulsating house production with sparkling falsetto vocals. Keyboards frequently fill the role of guitars on the EP, but closing track “Sweet and Low” offers yet another twist, starting off with just a strummed acoustic. It’s a rare organic moment, one designed to gently usher you out of the museum and back into the real world.
“I came into the studio with fully formed lyrics for that song,” says Hall, “and the guys discovered the chord structure that would work underneath as I sang it. The first time we played it, it sounded exactly how I imagined it would. It was a magical moment.”
For Princess Goes to the Butterfly Museum, it was just the first of many magical moments to come.
Juno Roome could be America’s poster child for “Least Suspicious Egomaniac,” which is hilarious considering he printed 500 f*cked up business cards. He really wanted a much larger font. (Editor’s note: I’m very happy with the cards.) So that between the business cards and the new guitar, he could pull off subtly overcompensating with a hip aesthetic. Juno also powerlifts and subsists off chicken and vegetables, which makes him the nerdiest bro I know. And is honestly sad because he’ll never be truly accepted by nerds, or validated by bros. He is an art bro, a breed all their own.