New Single “What We Do Is Public”
Taken from album Wolves of Want
Out 11 March 2016 on Slumberland Records
“Boston’s premiere indie rock outfit, Bent Shapes, admittedly contribute to the smartphone-obsessed culture, but on their single “What We Do Is Public,” they don’t hold back their resentments about it.” – Spin Magazine
LISTEN TO “WHAT WE DO IS PUBLIC”
“‘What We Do Is Public’ is a takeoff on “What We Do Is Secret” by The Germs, which I always assumed was about preserving punk rock and the underground music scene as a haven for misfits who felt more comfortable there,” explains Bent Shapes frontman Ben Potrykus of the Boston band’s newest single from their Slumberland Records debut, Wolves of Want out 11 March. “You can’t go to a show in 2016 without seeing someone who is so focused on documenting the event with pictures and videos they’re seamlessly uploading to the internet that they don’t seem to be watching or listening to the show as its happening.”
In the case of Wolves of Want, Bent Shapes were wholly focused on the event at hand, opting to record completely analogue with engineer Elio DeLuca of Titus Andronicus. The result is a cohesive collection of post-punk full of meditations on mental illness, the struggle to bring goodness into the world, and faith in humanity as a renewable resource.
The first vinyl pressing of Wolves of Want is on bone-and-pink color vinyl (or black vinyl, available directly from Slumberland only). All LPs include a code for a free download.
Bent Shapes – Wolves of Want
Release Date: March 11, 2016
Label: Slumberland Records
For fans of: Jonathan Richman, The Feelies, Ted Leo
1. New Starts In Old Dominion (listen)
2. 86’d In ’03
3. Third Coast
4. USA vs POR
5. Realization Hits (listen)
6. What We Do Is Public
7. Xerox Voids
8. Samantha West
9. Beton Brut
10. Intransitive Verbs
ABOUT BENT SHAPES…
Since forming the group under the name Girlfriends in 2009, principal songwriters Ben Potrykus and Andy Sadoway have largely ignored indie trends leaking from the “industry cities” in favor of churning out earnest, expertly-crafted pop and post-punk laced with “some of the tightest punk poetry around” (Liz Pelly).
2013’s Feels Weird (Father/Daughter Records) offered a glimpse at the discomfort and desperation of youth, with self-reflections on personal growth and decay. Over a year of critical acclaim from outlets as diverse as Maximum Rocknroll and Pitchfork, a tour with John Vanderslice, and shows with Fucked Up, Ted Leo, and The Bats followed, culminating with the addition of guitarist Luke Brandfon and bassist Jenny Mudarri.
Bent Shapes spent early 2015 recording Wolves of Want with Elio DeLuca (Titus Andronicus), although Potrykus and Sadoway began writing what would become their second album long before Feels Weird was even released. “The basic format for how songs came together was the same: Ben would write a guitar riff or vocal melody along with some chords and then we would hash out the arrangement in our rehearsal space,” explains Sadoway. The band took their biggest risk in the studio, electing to record Wolves of Want purely analog with 16 tracks. “Even with a relatively small number of tracks, we were able to bring in some additional instruments that we hadn’t added to our palette before: cello, trumpet, trombone to name a few,” says Sadoway. “My favorite part of tracking was when Luke and I got to play a Steinway grand together during the outro of ‘New Starts in Old Dominion.’”
Thematically, Wolves of Want is an album full of meditations on mental illness, the struggle to bring goodness into the world, and faith in humanity as a renewable resource. These themes are particularly personal to Potrykus who was diagnosed with multiple anxiety disorders after experiencing acute symptoms on-and-off for years. “I talk about it openly, because what helped me when I felt isolated and alone was reading books and listening to interviews by comedians and writers that had dealt with the same thing. The mainstream perception of a given disorder isn’t always accurate, and I don’t want anyone to feel like I did when things were at their worst,” explains Potrykus. “Writing about it was cathartic for me, as well — documenting how I was feeling gave me a way of contextualizing a personal crisis that made it seem like something I could overcome.”
Wolves of Want will be released by Slumberland Records on March 11, 2016.