LVL UP

Barboza Presents

LVL UP

Cende

Friday 9/22

7:00 pm

$13.00 - $15.00

This event is 21 and over

ADA SEATING: (not wheelchair accessible)
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LVL UP
“Hidden Driver,” the opening track of LVL UP’s third album and Sub Pop debut Return to Love, never stops moving. What starts with unassuming guitars and vocals adds new lines, depths, and intensity, until its unrestrained, triumphant finish. “God is peeking, softly speaking,” repeats the chorus, working through the relationship between spirituality and creative inspiration, and introducing a band that is always pushing further.

LVL UP -- guitarists Mike Caridi and Dave Benton, bassist Nick Corbo, and drummer Greg Rutkin -- is a true collaboration, a band that takes the stylistically distinct ideas of four members and brings them together into something new. Caridi, Benton, and Corbo write and sing equally, bringing their work to the group to be fully realized, resulting in an album built on different perspectives but a common drive.

“We have very different inspirations across the board,” says Benton, noting his own admiration for the writer and documentarian Astra Taylor, Corbo’s interest in the mystical and the occult, and Caridi’s attention to personal storytelling. The music itself grows from a shared melodic and experimental sensibility, as well as a nod to iconic influences like Neutral Milk Hotel and Mount Eerie. But each songwriter has a different vision every step of the way, and there isn’t always alignment--it shouldn’t make sense, but in the end it does.

LVL UP was formed in 2011 at SUNY Purchase as a recording project between Caridi, Benton, and their friend Ben Smith, with the original intention of releasing a split cassette with Corbo’s then-solo material. They instead released that album, Space Brothers, as one band, and Rutkin joined shortly afterwards for the group’s first show. Smith left the band for personal reasons just before the release of second album Hoodwink’d, a joint release on Caridi and Benton’s label Double Double Whammy and Exploding in Sound. DDW also put out records from other artists in the tight-knit community that launched the band.
Cende
Cende was born halfway through a laundry cycle in the year 2013. Cameron Wisch, Dave Medina, and Greg Rutkin had all just graduated from Purchase College and moved into Brooklyn house venue David Blaine’s The Steakhouse. Bonding over their mutual admiration for punk band The Marked Men, the trio began performing at DBTS and other local venues. They were soon joined by friend Bernard Casserly and became a more serious project after the self-release of their first EP in 2015.
The band centers around the two principal songwriters of Wisch and Medina. Wisch’s infectious melodies and meticulous song structures are complemented by Medina’s raw and highly energetic punk anthems.
Expanding on the catchy, power-pop songs of their debut EP, Cende’s first full-length album, #1 Hit Single, sees the band experimenting with more varied instrumentation and detailed production. The album was spearheaded by Wisch, who spent over a year carefully sculpting the album alongside producer, engineer, and friend Ronnie Stone. The end result is a compact and emotional batch of songs that draw influence from personal relationships, bizarre dreams, and the experiences surrounding the members’ lives during three years of living downstairs in a creative and chaotic DIY space. #1 Hit Single is out May 26th via Double Double Whammy.
Venue Information:
Barboza
925 E. Pike St.
Seattle, WA, 98122
http://thebarboza.com