Mixing the stomp and swagger of a rock ‘n roll band with the danceable drama and rule-breaking spirit of pop music, Pet Fangs bridge the gap between old and new, raw and refined, organic and digital.
The band members call their sound “garage-pop,” pointing to a range of influences — from Prince to T Rex to Let’s Dance-era David Bowie — as wide and varied as the group’s own material. All four members of Pet Fangs hail from South Louisiana, where brothers Joe and David Stark first attracted an audience as co-founders of the swampy rock band Baby Bee. Signed to Republic Records, Baby Bee launched as a duo and steadily expanded into a larger lineup, with Jory Cordy and Ben Alleman joining the ranks. Cordy, Alleman, and the two Stark siblings were all songwriters and multi-instrumentalists in their own right, each having logged time in touring bands and as session musicians. Together, though, they were something more: a tight-knit, democratic unit of musicians whose new songs were bigger, bolder, and broader than anything they’d created before. Looking to move outside of the rules they’d placed upon themselves as a rock band, they dissolved Baby Bee and launched a new band. A band with bite. Pet Fangs was born.
From the start, Pet Fangs embraced change. The guys switched instruments often. They switched recording studios, too, looking to chase down different sounds in a string of ever-changing environments. In doing so, they approached their new music like a rock group. They focused on hooks, grooves, and riffs, playing organic instruments along the way. Then, once the basic blueprint for each track had been laid, they abandoned the rule book altogether. Real instruments were sonically manipulated. Live drums were joined by programmed loops. Synthesizers and vocal effects were added to the mix. It was a no-limits approach to pop music, blending the influence of older decades with current sounds and rules-free experimentation. Joining them throughout the studio process was producer, engineer, and honorary “ghost member,” Justin Tocket, who manned the recording console and collaborated on new material during its earliest stages.
Pet Fangs’ music represents something new. It’s equal parts attitude, atmosphere, and adventurousness, glued together by four songwriters whose rock ‘n roll pedigree lends edge and electricity to their spacey pop music.
Joe Stark of the band shares of the cultivation, “One of our favorite studios is Dockside Studio in Maurice LA. There’s a TV above the console and we always put up some crazy old movie while we are working. I remember Jory our bass player put up ‘Barbarella’ starring Jane Fonda. It’s a really wild film visually and when we got out of the session, I came home and wanted to try out my little 4-track cassette recorder. I had a fuzzy guitar sound and just played two notes in a fast strumming pattern. When I went to come up with lyrics – Barbarella was everything that came to mind.”
RELEASE FULL-LENGTH ALBUM
PREMIERED VIA BIG TAKEOVER
GARAGE-POP, NEW ORLEANS-INFUSED RECORD FEATURES SINGLES
“SHE’S A KILLA”
LISTEN TO ULTRA DELUXE:
August 16, 2019 – Garage-pop group Pet Fangs have released their full-length album Ultra Deluxetoday. The album includes a ton of singles including their heavily-streamed hit “Afterglow,” the “grungy” (Ones to Watch) “Bitch, Baby.,” their latest track “Problemz,” as well as ton of previously unreleased new songs from the quartet. Ultra Deluxe premiered this week by way of the legendary publication The Big Takeover, who called the album “a wildly lively and fun ride through a number of cool music genres.”
“Problemz,” is the perfect midsummer jam; the song stems from a conversation between songwriter Joe Stark and his wife talking about the proper balance of drinking, partying and playing it safe. Stark explains, “We wrote ‘Problemz’ on the back porch of my house in Louisiana. My brother Dave was playing a bass line and we were all just sitting around drinking cervezas. I was thinking about my girl asking me the week before if I thought she had a problem because she wanted to drink wine on nights after work. Of course I said, “absolutely not” and lyrically, I just kind of went off the deep end with that idea. I do believe in moderation of substance but to be quite honest, but it’s also good to have some safe fun!”
Ultra Deluxe juxtaposes life and comedy, exploring everything from relationships and parenthood, to drinking habits and hard hitting topics like immigration, all with what HuffPost calls an “alt-dot avant garde flavor,” continuing that they’ve got “cool vibes, a contagious throbbing melody and goosed up resonant vocals. It’s sensual, dangerous and exotic, all at the same time.” The Pet Fangs gang have a sound that’s all their own, perfectly meshing rock and pop, with tinges of ’80s-themed zest.
Their music represents something new. It’s equal parts attitude, atmosphere, and adventurousness, glued together by four songwriters whose rock ‘n roll pedigree lends edge and electricity to their spacey pop music. As their new album nears release, fans can expect a fresh, evolved sound that encapsulates everything the band has experienced together.
In addition to a slew of new tracks that will have fans turning up their stereo to finish out the summer strong, Ultra Deluxe is jam-packed with all of their hits, like the aforementioned “Bitch, Baby.” which spurs a conversation about gender roles, and its companion “Candy, Baby.,” along with “Racquet Skirt,” the Jane Fonda inspired “Barbarella,” “She’s Alright,” which Northern Transmissions said “will definitely [make] you want to pour a summery beverage,” and “She’s a Killa.”
Now that Ultra Deluxe is here, it’s time to throw a summer porch hang and throw a couple back to Pet Fangs’ New Orleans-infused rock aesthetic that adds a new and vibrant texture to the current pop genre.
To celebrate Ultra Deluxe, the band is hosting an album release show at House of Blues in New Orleans on Friday, August 30th (info and tickets on Facebook here). For more information on Pet Fangs, visit petfangs.com and follow them on social media @petfangs.