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Activity are an avant four-piece featuring Travis Johnson, and drummer Steve Levine, both from the band Grooms, bassist Zoë Browne from Field Mouse, and guitarist Jess Rees from Russian Baths.  Produced by engineer Jeff Berner of Psychic TV, their debut forms a casually menacing framework for lyrical themes of paranoia, exposed character flaws, and the broader human capacity for growth when an ugly truth is laid bare.

Lead single “Calls Your Name,” establishes the record’s spectral aura with nauseated electronic bells, and a relentless Geoff Barrow-esque drum beat beneath a half-sung, half-spoken lyrics inspired by C.S. Lewis’s 1945 novel The Great Divorce.  In the novel, characters stuck in a grey, joyless conception of hell repeatedly deny opportunities to be taken into heaven, instead making excuses as to why they should remain in their embittered purgatory states.  Allegorically, this speaks to the kind of opportunity for metamorphosis and positive change that’s possible when the depths of disillusionment are reached, an idea which permeates much of the album.  Despite recurrent aches of discontentment, each track glows with radiant waves of catharsis while elegantly evoking jubilation and anguish within the same breadth, showing that the two are always around the corner from one another.


After talking about it for ages, Maxband began when Brooklyn musicians and longtime friends Max Savage (Parquet Courts), Patrick Smith (A Beacon School), Tim Nelson and Eric Read decided it was finally time to start making music together. After enlisting Doug Schadt (Maggie Rogers, Ashe, Wet), a mutual friend, to produce and mix their official debut release, the Top Of The Stairs EP was born.


“It’s rare to be in a band with your best-friends,” says Alec Alabado, bassist of the post-punk four-piece, S.C.A.B. “I think there’s just this underlying feeling that we’re like a family.”


That’s right—isolate the first letter of each member’s name and you’ll understand where the melodic, jangly outfit has taken its name. And yet, for as close as the band members are, it still took years before deciding to work together.

Frontman Sean Camargo, whose parents immigrated from South America as teenagers, was born in Elmhurst, Queens. His lyrics are colored with nostalgic memories of 90’s Bushwick, where his grandparents settled, alongside sardonic observations of the contemporary city where he landed again after stops in Maryland and Massachusetts. The four band members had circled in and out of each other’s lives for years, first as college friends in Boston and afterwards as roommates in Ridgewood, Queens. But they had never played in a group together until Sean was preparing to record the band’s debut album, “Beauty & Balance,” in 2019. 

Perhaps the delay was for the best. For if the band’s approach to their debut had been about supporting Sean’s first batch of S.C.A.B. songs, their latest effort shows them on a new path. Having briefly toured the first album in early 2020, the band had developed a more collaborative, collective vision (the band compare themselves to guitar-forward bands like Women, the Strokes and even Parachutes-era Coldplay.) In late 2020, after Covid-19 put the brakes on their burgeoning career, they headed down to rural Georgia to record their second, self-titled LP, which they engineered and produced themselves.

It’s the effort of four musicians, best friends, a tight-knit family: the kind of rare conditions that allow for such raw, emotionally-charged music. When the members of a band are this close, able to protect each other from the world outside it, they are a force to be reckoned with—and S.C.A.B. are nothing short of that.


Formed in 2018 in NY, Lip Critic is the electronic music project of Bret Kaser, Connor Kleitz, Daniel Eberle, and Ilan Natter. The band is comprised of two samplers two drummers and vocals. Their projects include “Kill Lip Critic” in 2019, “Lip Critic II” in 2020 and “Lip Critic: Truth Revealed” in 2021.

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TV Eye

1647 Weirfield St, Ridgewood, NY, 11385

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Activity / Maxband / S.C.A.B. / Lip Critic