Beecher’s Fault, an Astoria-based indie pop/rock band, has released its second EP entitled Misbehavior. Similar to bands like Local Natives, TV on the Radio, and The New Pornographers, the members of Beecher’s Fault are not content with the current landscape of pop music; they want to refine and redefine “pop” by creating carefully crafted, thought-provoking songs that are as intricate as they are catchy.
While the band’s first EP was strong, Misbehavior shows clear development in their sound. “We definitely feel like a more cohesive unit now,” vocalist/guitarist Ben Taylor explains, “the tracks on the last album sounded very different from one another, mainly because we were experimenting with different techniques. But now we feel like we’ve gotten into the groove a lot more and developed a unique sound.” Ken Lamken, keyboardist/vocalist adds, “We understand our respective roles in the music we create and Ben, our new drummer Max and I definitely feed off of each other better than ever before.”
The music on this album articulates the cohesiveness they mentioned. Each track is thoughtfully construed and provides variation without sacrificing the core hook or melody. However, none of it feels superfluous and the placement of every note and lyric is quite deliberate, proof that “pop” doesn’t necessarily just mean four chords, a chorus and a bridge.
“Wall Street” is amongst the album’s top tracks. It cleverly juxtaposes a hip-shaking melody against a social critique of the greed and callousness that has become synonymous with New York’s Wall Street. An intoxicating four note keyboard riff and a wry, slightly sarcastic undertone in Lamken’s crooning gives the song all its needs to capture your attention and perhaps the attention of those that it speaks to. “I wrote the song a long time ago,” Lamken describes, “it was my own personal take on what was going on in the financial industry in this country. And then the whole Occupy Wall Street movement started so we thought it was appropriate to include on the album.”
Beecher’s Fault goes one step further with their social commentary on their title track “Misbehavior”, weighing in on society’s ills and the frustration of being unable to comprehend them. “I got the idea (for the song) when I was at a deli. These guys walked in all suited up and started boasting about their paychecks and it got me thinking about this lack of accountability in our society. We’re all sort of minding our own business and collecting our paychecks instead of really examining how our actions affect those around us,” Taylor explains to me. The full-bodied harmony of the track features a playful exchange between the keyboard and drums, layered over Taylor’s falsetto vocals. The special ingredient in this track is its unpredictability, as it introduces elements like the tambourine and acoustic strumming at just the right moments.
Beecher’s Fault show their softer side on “Say Something”, a clever self-reflection piece that is anchored by an anthemic chorus line and a roller coaster of a keyboard riff that contracts and expands around Taylor’s vocals.
Misbehavior is a great leap forward for Beecher’s Fault. The first album told the world that they existed; this album shows us who they are. The band was able to produce the album thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign that ended up surpassing its original goal. “The experience was amazing,” Lamken tells me, “we saw such an incredible outpour of support from family, friends and our fanbase. We loved how transparent the process was, too. People knew what they were funding and what they were getting in return. So, we couldn’t have been happier with the result.”
With a new drummer that has joined and a new and impressive arsenal of songs to play, Beecher’s Fault hope to continue touring and building their following.
To purchase Misbehavior or learn more about Beecher’s Fault, visit the band’s website: http://beechersfault.com/