Self described as “a pop band with schizophrenic urges for the avant garde” and “dark orchestral rock music for the slightly demented,” New York City based spazzy indie rockers KISS KISS will release their sophomore album, The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left, on July 7th via Eyeball Records.
Written at a dark period of time in singer/keyboardist/mastermind Josh Benash’s life, which included bouts with depression, a vocal polyp and a vocal node (doctors said he probably wouldn’t be able to sing again), he spent lots of free time at his alma mater of SUNY Purchase, locked away in a practice room writing new songs on the piano. Unable to speak, Benash mimed all his ideas to his band mates and wrote thoughts on a black board for FOUR months before the band even hit the studio. The band spent two months in a guesthouse in the woods of Upstate New York with no heat or running water to record The Meek… with Dan Goodwin (Nora Jones, Murder by Death, Thursday, The Number 12 Looks Like You). Goodwin also recorded band’s critically lauded debut, Reality Vs. The Optimist.
With drums, bass, guitars, basic keyboards, live pianos, a string quartet and brass choir recorded on to two inch tape, and then transferred to Pro Tools at the studio, Benash recorded vocals and tweaked the songs in a rented room in a Saugerties, NY house over a four month period.
“This is the way we do each album,” says Benash. “We record what we can’t do on our own and then really focus on vocals on our own time. I also used a lot of home made instruments I wouldn’t have the pocket to sit around and fiddle with in a $1,000 a day studio, like circuit bent drums, modified guitars and many analog keyboards.”
In the face of crippling health issues, “17 or so line up changes,” and the better part of a year spent on production, Kiss Kiss has recorded a 45-minute album full of beautiful string arrangements (“If They Only Knew”), eastern-European flavored freak-outs (“Innocent I”) and pop songs gone awry (“Plague #11”) that is both intimate and epic.
Kiss Kiss is Benash, Rebecca Schlappich (violin), Michael Pat Abiuso (guitar), Patrick Southern (bass), Jared Karns (drums)