A few years ago I was sitting in my apartment flipping through the channels on the television when I heard a wonderful noise. I stopped flipping, and realized I was on MTV. This was a surprise for many reasons, the biggest being they were actually talking about music on the channel that had turned its back on the form in favor of reality tv.
The band being discussed was a group of teenagers, kids really, out of Brooklyn that called themselves The Hysterics. The music was 60’s psychadalia all the way, and it was great. I couldn’t believe how amazing this band was, and they were only 15 and 16 year olds. Imagine the future these guys could have!
Well, imagine was all I could do. There were three songs released on a music blog (the first time I had really heard such a thing was possible) and I downloaded them immediately. “Mostly Untitled,” “Uptight Staircase,” and “You Tell Yourself It’s Easy” are the only songs I ever heard by the band.
In March of 2008 there was a full-length album released featuring 12 tracks. You can hear all of them on their MySpace page.
I was reminded of these guys because a lot of music I’ve been listening to is of the same ilk. The Beatles, The Animals, dozens of great bands from the 60’s inform bands like The Poison Control Center, Smith Westerns, The Redwalls. For whatever reason The Hysterics split up, and I feel it’s a great loss to all of us who were looking forward to hearing what came next.
After thinking about it, I googled lead singer Oliver Ignatius, and I’m happy to see that he’s still making music, now under the moniker Ghost Pal. Bass player Josh Barocas helps out on some tracks featured on Bandcamp, but not the other two members of The Hysterics.
If you enjoy this type of music, I recommend first checking out Hysterics proper, and then hitting up Bandcamp to hear some interesting work by Ignatius. This track in particular caught my ear. It’s a bit sad, but that John Lennon affectation in his voice gets me every time.