One thing alt-rock cry-or-say-die boys Brand New are not is tame. Loitering in the empty space where their red hearts should be is a darkened disquiet; a kind of naturalness that belongs only to the dramatically disheveled, the darlings of heart-break and self-inflicted evolution. It is because they continue to transcend themselves both musically and emotionally that they have been able to outlast three separate record labels and the demands of the music industry without losing face.
Born out of a basement in Merrick, N.Y. (a Long Island suburb), the foursome has been together since 2000. Prior to their union, the band had ties to the Long Island post-hardcore/alternative music scene as the bulk of the band - bassist Garrett Tierney, drummer Brian Lane, and lead vocal/guitarist Jesse Lacey - were former members of The Rookie Lot. After that band's demise, the three began a new project and eventually added a second guitarist, the 17-year-old Vincent Accardi.
A few new songs and a lot of suave sordidness later, Brand New released their first studio album under Triple Crown Records in 2001. Your Favorite Weapon brought with it a national tour alongside bands such as Taking Back Sunday, Finch and Incubus. By 2003, with the release of Deja Entendu (French translation: "Already Heard"), Brand New was being played all over American radio waves. Successful singles off this album included "The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows" and "Sic Transit Gloria…Glory Fades," which aided to push the band from national supporting act to headliner. The band's sound was leased out to Australia and Japan in early 2004, making them an international success. They would go into seclusion after a tour until 2006, when they released their most recent album, The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me.
Highly anticipated, the album was released under the Interscope label. Unlike Your Favorite Weapon, which they consider to be their adolescent and unskilled phase, Devil and God contains most of their best music to date. Banded together with a hollow dejection, the album acts as haunting memoir to the band's own musical progression. In such tracks as "You Won't Know" and "Sowing Season," there is an absolute chaotic ingenuousness, like a rolling winter wind that starts soft, then hits hard, then fades into nothing.
Considerably, Brand New is one of the best bands at building anticipation then doling out a shotgun blast on high-energy rock. When Brand New comes to Geneseo on April 20 for the Spring Concert, expect a sound that is as brazened and bold as the sun, but as dark and daunting as the moon.