The landscape of the heavy music culture in New York is deeply-rooted, robust, and incredibly prolific in terms of its contributions to aggressive music. The generations of artists that have emerged from the region are among the most important and most enduring.
Channeling that historic pedigree, Banshee are among the latest prospects to continue in the tradition of dynamic, nuanced New York hardcore. Embracing the spirit, the angst, and the energy of the subgenre, the band have debuted their recent EP, Events Occur In Real Time, in a showcase of their brand of heavy.
Ahead of the premiere of their latest video for the single, "Sunflower," the band's Nico Cafarelli checked in to discuss some of the details of the release and fuels the band.
The world is a pretty pissed off place right now. Is it a good time to be making aggressive music? CAFARELLI - I think it's always a good time, to be honest. Aggressive music is always welcomed by its fandom, someone could have the best day of their lives and still throw on a Slayer record you know? That being said, when it seems like the world's on fire and people are looking for something that makes sense and something that is consistent, music is always that constant.
Does the band use their music to address reality or escape it? CAFARELLI - I'm very selfish with my lyrics so I'm always singing about something that applies to me even if the line comes off as abstract or metaphorical, so it's definitely like a coping mechanism or a way to make sense of whatever's going on in my life whether it's themes of existential dread or death in the family or unrequited love or whatever it's always seeded in reality. And I'm not unique in that, people go through those same things everyday so maybe someone will get something out of it too.
The lines between hardcore and metal are getting more and more blurry. Do you feel like genre matters less for the newer generation?
CAFARELLI - I think so, you always read about times when metal kids and hardcore kids dont get along but I've never witnessed that first hand. I've always liked different genres of music, - I'm listening to Songs About Jane right now - so genre labels were never really a law for me. You need them, because labels define what's what but I don't think it's that big of a deal. Good songs are good songs.
Banshee walks that fine line between hardcore and metal. What about the band do you feel resonates with both communities?
CAFARELLI - For hardcore I feel like a lot of it is the vibe, the energy always feels like its about to shoot through the ceiling and with metal is a little more composed and its all about when that super big riff hits and you're looking at your friend and geek out over how heavy it is. I think we hit both spots pretty well but that's up to the listener to decide.
What are some of the artists that Banshee views as setting the bar currently? CAFARELLI - Oh that's easy. 110% Greyhaven from Kentucky. They put out this record Empty Black in 2018 the musicianship is completely out of this world and they write the sickest songs. Brent actually did the artwork for our EP.
What qualities do you hope that new listeners will attribute to the band? CAFARELLI - All I can hope for people will just play it loud and enjoy it however they like, in their headphones at work or blaring through their car, just have a good time with it. Any positive feelings will do.
Events Occur In Real Time from BANSHEE is available HERE.
Watch the premiere for "Sunflower" from BANSHEE below.