NASHVILLE, TN | JUNE 15TH, 2018 - Based in Nashville, retro alternative duo John & Joe visit nostalgic 80’s influences in their new single “Honeyman,” out TODAY. Started with a simple bass line written by band member Joe, the song acts as an homage of sorts to English guitarist Honeyman Scott of The Pretenders, a band John & Joe were heavily influenced by on this track. The track, intermixed with indie elements, tells the story of two people who engage in romantics, but ultimately don’t want to form a commitment, a mirror of sorts to modern society. Moving to Nashville also played a role in the inspiration of new music. Moving from Washington state to Tennessee pushed the duo to perfect their craft, which led to the creation of a 3 song EP, due out this year. About “Honeyman,” the band states:
“We had been waiting to see when living in Nashville would start to influence us musically and it really comes out on this song. The guitar hook and solo especially show the influence this city has had on us so far. The song is about being in your early 20’s when it seems like nobody is interested in committed relationships yet feels very lonely most of the time. It’s about the ever changing belief of who your ideal partner is and the countless conversations we have with each other about that, hoping for clarity but usually never finding it. The song tells a story of two friends who end up becoming romantic but aren't interested in committing to each other at all.”
John and Joe have been in bands together since they were fourteen years old. They hail from the great Pacific Northwest and recently relocated to Nashville, even though the move first meant seven months of sleeping on a floor. John and Joe left their days of playing at Portland's Satyricon Theater but brought with them their never-ending love of 80s and 90s music, knack for writing guitar hooks, and tight, energetic live performances. John and Joe's music has been featured on MTV in both commercials and series, coloring the likes of "Teen Mom" and other beloved shows. The dream lives on in Music City where John and Joe are fine-tuning their style and connecting with other talented artists. “Honeyman” is available on all digital platforms NOW.
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LONG ISLAND, NY | JUNE 8TH, 2018 - Long Island indie pop/rock band Persona find their footing in their new single “Indie Cowboy,” out TODAY. Released with a corresponding music video, the quartet explore various elements of indie rock, pop, and alternative on the track, while simultaneously sounding rather seasoned and crisp. Recorded at ZIN Records on Long Island, the new track is a strong representation of the band’s upcoming EP, due out at the end of this year or early next year. Although just a single, you get a sense of perseverance from Persona, who collectively as individual members have overcome quite a few trying feats. Taking those unique pains and applying it to Persona’s creative process, the result is an indie mish mosh of triumph. About “Indie Cowboy,” the band states:
“Indie Cowboy” has been a long time in the making. The intro guitar riff was written by singer Tom Spartinos nearly ten years ago! It wasn’t till about 4 years ago, where the band actually started to put it together. Musically the song came together after CJ Kostaras joined the band and took the drums to a whole new level. Lyrically, the song was written within the last 6 months by Costas Themistocleous and Tom Spartinos. “We are by no means a political band or band that’s really in touch with politics, but we wanted to write a song about current events and where we feel we fit in such places.” States Tom Spartinos. “Indie Cowboy is an indirect shot at the racism, division, & state of the current world and its affairs. I believe everyone needs to lay down their pride and just remember that we are all human beings,” adds Costas Themistocleous.
The adage that states “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” hits home for Long Island Indie/Pop rock quartet Persona. Prior to the band’s foundation in 2011, the members spent the better part of the decade not only developing their craft, but becoming one with the character, reality and imagination that makes the band who they are today. “We write songs about events that have happened in our lives. Our songs are about overcoming are struggles, they are literally who we are collectively and individually,” states singer Tom Spartinos. Indeed, the struggle has been very real in past years with a car accident nearly taking bassist Sam Trestmans’ life, a fire destroying guitarist Costas Themistocleous’ home as well as the band’s home recording studio and various battles with demons and addiction. “The ups and downs of life in general have solidified a strong and sacred bond between us that has reflected in our music,” explains Themistocleous. Indeed, the layered indie-rock sound that Persona has cultivated shines in the band’s debut release, “Take Me To The Mon”. Released in late 2012, the EP is rich with crisp harmonies and nostalgic melodies. “Mayday, We Crashed” was the sophomore EP produced by Gary Cioffi (Transit, Four Year Strong) at Maximum Sound Studio in Danvers, MA. Upon completion of “Mayday, We Crashed”, Persona ultimately crashed and went under the radar. Little did they know it would be a few years before they shared their music with the world again. “After we got home from touring and the release of “Mayday, We Crashed” we burnt out, we all felt it would be best to take a few weeks to ourselves, little did we know how long that few weeks would turn out to be” explains Tom Spartinos on the band’s state after “Mayday, We Crashed.” “We just needed a break. We needed to grow individually to get to the next chapter of our lives. I honestly can’t say it didn’t hurt me every day, but Tom and I kept writing when we had the chance and jamming full band when available,” retorts Costas Themistocleous. In the spring of 2017, Persona released the single and lyric video for “Say What You Say,” followed by former bassist Will Suraci departing from the band and drummer CJ Kostaras (Giants at Large) becoming the back bone. The band is currently set to release 3 new singles and videos before they hit the studio in November 2018 to record their 3rd EP and are planning numerous local and national tour dates for 2018 and beyond.“Indie Cowboy” is available NOW.
“Indie Cowboy” music video
“Indie Cowboy” stream link
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What was the writing process like for your new single?
The writing process for Indie Cowboy was rather natural and smooth. The initial riff in the song was written by Tom previous to the bands formation and was revisited in 2014 during a dark and gloomy time. It transitioned seamlessly between us into what you hear today. Due to situations and circumstances in our lives,we took a step back and became isolated and I think the anger and hurt reflects within the song.
How does it differ from the band’s previous releases?
We believe that it is a more mature, grown up version of Persona. Our previous releases reflect on what is to become and I think this song is a good representation of that.
What are your follow up plans for the single? Any upcoming tour or record to support it?
We are releasing a few more singles throughout the summer accompanied by music videos in preparation for recording our third EP this November at Zin Records. We will be playing at Revolution in Amityville, NY with Stickup Kid June 30th and we will be hitting a couple cities within the North East this summer.
In terms of your style, do you think “Indie Cowboy” is the best representation of Persona?
Persona has never really stuck with one sound or dynamic Our songs are influenced by several different sounds and are catered to heal several different emotional states. Indie Cowboy is a great representation of a darker, more progressive side of the Persona spectrum.
When you release music, does everyone in the band have to be 100% sold on the music? Have you all ever disagreed on certain tracks?
Our final version of the song has all our agreeance. While writing the songs we can disagree, and spew ideas back and forth until all 4 members are appeased. We believe this brings out the best in our craft.
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What made you decide to record an all-acoustic EP?
There’s an honesty with acoustic music that can get buried or covered up with a full band. When TiF started I was by myself playing acoustic shows at cafes and arcades, so it’s cool kind of going back to that vibe for this one.
Do you think stripping down these songs changed the vibes of each one?
Yea, definitely. There’s a punch that drums, electric guitars, and belting vocals creates; taking those elements away we wanted to see how everything felt. Not to sound too cliche but going from full band to acoustic, you can definitely hear/find a different story or vibe in each song. Sometimes sad, sometimes more honest and empowering.
Out of all the tracks on this record, which do you think translated best acoustically?
Both Zax and I agree that “Sunshine” came out really well. When we wrote/tracked that song for the Self Titled EP last year, for me, it was all about finding my strength and honesty from an upsetting time. With this, listening to it on Acoustic, the atmosphere around the song is much more calm and accepting. It’s more soothing than conflicting.
What plans do you have to follow up this record in 2018? Any touring or more music?
Definitely shows this Summer and into the Fall! We’ve been wanting to be on the road but after our April tour we’ve had to take time rehearsing new music, we’ve got plans to be in the studio for a few days this Summer as well. More of everything for sure.
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