Pinc Louds may describe themselves as an “imaginary band,” but the type of imagination to dream such a group up is one that is incredibly memorable. Formed about one year ago, the trio consists of Claudi Ausbury, Ofer Bear, and Rai Mundo, and together they play songs that are a magical, whimsical blend of anti-folk, rock, punk, and something wild and theatrical. Though their rather outlandish and colorful appearance could lead some to see them as just a fun concept, their “hardcore acoustic doowop” music is equally transformative, seamlessly going from kind falsetto ballads to a shrieking, raucous number and back again, all while providing fantastical lyrics, and interesting stories.
They got their start playing mostly in the Delancey-Essex subway station, and while they’ve “graduated” to playing shows in actual venues (including a weekly stint at Williamsburg spot, Naive), they still consider the (literal) underground their sort-of home. Trains come and go, but that doesn’t mean they can’t carve out a more permanent spot for themselves in the world. To do so, Pinc Louds is in the process of recording their first-ever album, and is having a party this Saturday to help raise funds for it.
“We started this band so that others would’t have to do it. In the last decade, there’s been a lot of pressure on young people to start a band called Pinc Louds that plays jazzy punky songs about roaches and lost love,” explains bassist Ofer Bear (named after the bear head he wears, of course) when I ask their origin story. “No one wanted to do it, which I understand completely. It’s not an easy task. But we got tired of hearing about it and here we are: Pinc Louds.”
Their look, which could be described as something like a toy store and child’s dress-up box found inside of some fantasyland’s trash can, is “a natural symptom of spending so much time in subway stations,” Ofer Bear said. “I think being submerged in these fluorescent lights almost 24/7 messes with your head and you begin to see Watermelon Gods and talking garbage cans and such.”
Playing in the subway stations, naturally, will give you a more colorful group of spectators than any “normal” venue would. I ask the group what their most delightful, memorable, or strange experience they’ve had while playing in the subway is.
After Rai mentions a mirror being placed in front of the band and Claudi says she “get[s] a lot of old men who bat their eyelashes at me and tell me they love me,” Ofer inerjects. “What about the dildo guy?”
Claudi explains: “One time a guy sat down next to me and started sucking on a giant dildo. He sucked on it for the entire duration of Last Chance at Love,” which, by the way, is a song that’s nearly six minutes long. You have to appreciate the commitment to the task at hand, and such an activity isn’t exactly out of place in the wild world of tunes, trash, and creatures that Pinc Louds has brought forth into the world.
Why, they’ve already created a musical about “the wonders of eating from the garbage.” In this musical, “Mr. Garbage and I sing a really pretty song about all the things you can find inside him,” Claudi recounts. “Then, once we convince the audience, we open a garbage food restaurant at the Delancey St. Station. The waiters and waitresses are all rats and roaches and they also tell stories and dance and stuff.”
Those who might attend the band’s album fundraiser show on Saturday night at Bizarre Bushwick will be treated to a busy night indeed. Perhaps the rodent cast of the musical will make an appearance, or a nearby trash can will become sentient and join in a dance.
“All the Pinc Louds characters are going to be there,” says Claudi. “Daddy Long Arms, Mr. Garbage, My Teeth, Watermelon God… We’re going to be playing all the songs we’ve made since the band started. Also a lot of Pinc Louds games, prizes, Pinc Louds stickers, drawings, poems… There’s going to be two DJs, five hats, seventeen battery-powered battery chargers.”
“And love,” adds Rai. “Lots of it.”
The Pinc Louds album fundraiser party is Saturday, October 22 at Bizarre Bushwick, 12 Jefferson Street. 9 pm, $10 suggested donation.