Two Cheers is singer/songwriter Bryan Akcasu’s music project based in Los Angeles. Bryan writes, records, and mixes exclusively in basements, bedrooms, and closets instead of studios. It’s mostly sparkly, beat-laden early 90s-esque “indie” music that calls to mind Real Estate, The Cure, Wavves, Young The Giant, and increasingly, Bjork. Bryan’s lyrics are chaotic, poetic, deeply personal, often tragic stream-of-consciousness vignettes.
Two Cheers began as a solo project in Los Angeles in 2014 with a self-titled record of slick, catchy, Cure-esque soft rock with deep beats and sparkly 90s flourishes. Guitarist Mitchell Dill and bassist Al Aguilar joined Two Cheers for 2015’s Splendor and 2016’s singles “Black Hole” and “Condos”, which gained praise from the blogosphere for their infectious energy, vivid lyricism, exuberant vocals, and intricate-yet-rocking guitar work. Bryan reformed Two Cheers in Detroit for 2016-2017, culminating in a performance at Detroit’s famous Dally In The Alley festival and a record release show tie-in with Corktown STRUT for 2017’s Rollick. Rollick was a collaboration with the new band and featured lusher production, glittering guitars, soaring synths, and darker moods, and owed its sound and sorrowful themes to the death of Bryan’s mother that year. NPR used the band’s acoustic version of “Splendor” to promote the Tiny Desk Contest. Around this time Bryan also appeared in The Unknown Tour documentary and lended vocals to the soundtrack. After a few years of playing shows around Detroit, Bryan decided to break up the Detroit iteration of Two Cheers, take hiatus, relocate back to Los Angeles, and re-imagine his music career. “I’m not sure touring and playing a lot of little shows is for me. I love performing, but everything else that goes into it really bums me out, and life is too short for that. Having a bunch of bandmates was fun for awhile too, but all I want to do now is write some poems, play around in my studio, and call that Two Cheers.” Bryan began writing and recording a massive amount of new material in 2018, beginning with the forthcoming Rearview, and a handful of further releases for 2019.
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PREMIERED ON BUZZBANDS.LA
LISTEN TO “FUTURE CONSTELLATIONS”:
“There’s an unfiltered emotionalism in [Two Cheers’] songs. The confessional indie artists of the late ’90s and early ’00s come to mind.”
– Kevin Bronson, Buzzbands
“It’s easy to fall for Two Cheers.”
– Mitch Mosk, Atwood Magazine
“Two Cheers spews heartfelt lyrics with 90s pop-esque riffs, the two elements blending together without a hitch. [They] bring to mind diverse influences like The Cure and Real Estate.”
– Virginia Croft, Impose Magazine
June 20, 2019 – Following a brief hiatus, today the neon acoustic Two Cheers return to the music scene with the latest track “Future Constellations,” a sentiment that boasts loss and longing, but also a bit of cosmic hope. The new song by Los Angeles-based frontman Bryan Akcasu premiered earlier this week on Kevin Bronson’s tastemaker publication Buzzbands.la.
Over the past couple of years, due to a few of life’s traumas in combination with the basic challenges of adulthood, Akcasu took a break from music to put the focus back on his other career as a vegan skin care formulation chemist so that he and his wife could move back to their adopted home of Los Angeles from Detroit and start a family. Now, with a renewed semblance of stability, good California vibes, and a very little bit of extracurricular time, the focus is back on Two Cheers.
“Future Constellations,” though, like all songs on the forthcoming Rearview LP, takes a look at the inescapable past that ultimately led Akcasu to come back to music on his own terms and “to rekindle the chemical reactions in Two Cheers songs. And there are many.” (Buzzbands.la)
Akcasu shares, “‘Future Constellations’ is about a night under the stars in Michigan’s wild and chilly upper peninsula, longing for something or someone never coming back: I wrote this song because back in Detroit, I had a terrible sense of loss: I missed my friends who spread out across the country, I missed my life in California, I missed my mom and grandma who had both just passed within a few months from each other, and I had the feeling of losing my innocence too, especially seeing my once happy family in so much pain and having so many hopes and plans shattered.”
“So, while I can’t pinpoint the subject of the song; I just had a longing for a lost world, lost people, lost hope, and I wanted to believe I could relive it all and see everyone again. During those days, before we left Michigan, I used to visit my aunt’s cabin on Lake Superior and just kick around on my own. One night on the lake, I started thinking about the constellations changing shape over millions and billions of years, and how the arrangements of stars we know now are just a snapshot of the universe at this time. They’ll scatter over time, but maybe if enough time passes, stars will eventually end up making the same shapes, and the constellations we know could reform. It seemed like the right metaphor.”
For more information follow the band @twocheers on Instagram and Facebook and @TwoCheersMusic for Twitter.