Carney, you abusive lover. Inviting me in with your initial soft cooing so close to the microphone, then smacking me hard in the face with your guitar riffs and screams, tornado of drum beats, wet strands of blond hair veiling your eyes singing that if I love you, I will chase you. I would.

Someone hands me a beer. I’m in the back room of Pianos for this private concert of a band called Carney. They are from California, and they are going to be the next big thing. Evan Rachel Wood plays an evil lion tamer in their “Love Me Chase Me,” video, while the lead singer, Reeve Carney, will be starring in a Broadway production of Spiderman with music written by Bono and The Edge. But all of that doesn’t matter now, because to be honest, compared to this live spin cycle mating of the human voice and several instruments, the band’s album and video are rather underwhelming. One must see them live, like some uncaged beast, Carney explodes on stage, sweating, screaming, eyes rolling in their sockets like some exuberant exorcism of rock and roll, liberated and talented enough to give birth to the most terrifying and equally poignant orchestrated chaos of noise.

You may say, what the hell do I know? But as once stated oh so wisely, art is in the eyes of the beholder. And did I behold? Yes – and thoroughly. My limbs demanded movement, I felt the way people must have felt when they watched Jim Morrison gyrate in those tight leather pants of his, ascending into some surreal cloud of weed smoke and musical paradise. Especially when Reeve Carney decided to sing the beginning of "Bohemian Rhapsody" under the soft blue lights, he took me back to my childhood when I didn’t speak English and mumbled random meaningless Freddy Mercury lyrics, loving him, and all the while not knowing that he would never love me back, for more reasons than I could understand at that age. Thank you Carney, thank you for your wild hair flying under the lights, your thin limbs shaking away, your drums almost splitting from the energy, your guitars melting in your hands like some weak willed woman, thank you for your music and your words, and for an experience no one will ever forget.

Check out the band’s website:

Carney will be performing in the Bowery Ballroom June 1.


  • Radiapathetic
    Radiapathetic on

    The website is actually and

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