by Frank Ippolito
So, I’m sitting in a bar, after a World Cup match, and someone I know walks up to me and says, “Hey, you really need to check out this band…” And that’s how you find out about a band you really need to hear – a hidden gem.
Day Before Plastics, a brand new outfit from Phoenix, comprised of Travis Snowberger (guitars/vocals), Dominick Provenzano (bass/vocals), Chris Zagami (drums), and Tim Provenzano (keyboards), deliver a very unique and solid five song EP.
The first track, “Girl Named Faye” starts off with a very simple guitar riff, alt country really, but then when the guitars and keyboards enter the fray, it turns into a terrific rockin’ Tom Petty-esque tune that delivers on music and lyrics. That’s when I said to myself, “Self, here’s a sound that I haven’t heard lately, from any band, and yeah, let’s keep listening.” Yep, that’s what I said.
“Waste” is dark and moody. The understated lead guitar provided by Snowberger is straight out of the 70s, the good part of the 70s. “We are wasteful, we are warm, we’re not hopeless, we’re just bored” are the lyrics that weave in and out of the beat of the drums and when we get to the bridge, the lead guitar riff comes out of nowhere, furiously ripping across a couple of bars punctuating the frustration and apathy of Millennials, the focus of the song.
If “Wiggle” isn’t a great tune, I don’t know what is. It’s got a little bit of rock and country and the lyrics are fantastic. As I was listening, I played the “Who do these guys sound like?” game, and I couldn’t come up with a name, and that’s what I truly dig about Day Before Plastics. It’s as if these kids built a TARDIS, (nerd alert), traveled back in time, spent some time in the studio with bands from the 60s and 70s, came back and put it down on tape.
“Watch You Walk Away” find the boys with girl trouble. And while the elementary guitar/bass line that starts the song is well, “elementary”, the vocals have this wonderful, “sing talking” feel to them (you know, the kind “The Replacements” used to the fullest degree), then a surprising Spanish Flamenco lead is the perfect accent to overcome any shortcomings the beginnings may have had for me.
The last track, “You Don’t Know Me”, is an instrumental with narration over it, and honestly, I think it tries too hard to be unique. I really was into the music, but why oh why do that with all the lyrically rich songwriting that came before it?
That song notwithstanding, Day Before Plastics has a very, very unique sound and voice and I’d highly recommend seeking out the EP for a listen. It’s not out yet, but they are having CD release party so you can catch them live at The Rogue Bar on July 18th.
BTW, if you know of a “Hidden Gem” – a band, musician, et al, who isn’t quite out of the closet yet, but you feel is worthy of attention, send it to email@example.com and I’ll be sure to give it a listen.