The NYC riot grrrl band’s EP is a three-track confession—an expression of paranoia, exploration of ongoing struggles and a coming to terms with one’s toxic traits as a means to move forward
According to a quick google search, the religious tradition of confession goes back thousands and thousands of years. However, as a more casual sinner who grew up in a less holy household and instead worshipped at the hallowed church of TRL (afternoon service, five days a week!), I prefer to trace the concept back to 2004, when Usher’s “Confessions, Pt. II” came out and we as a teenage society of MTV-addicted millennials collectively realized the real benefits of declaring your misdeeds. Bonus points if it’s a banger.
Jokes aside, there is something inherently human about wanting to get our transgressions off of our chests. To share our secrets, bear our baggage and acknowledge that there are actions we’re not proud of, characteristics we’re ashamed of and behaviors that aren’t in line with who we see ourselves to be. Who we want to be. A desire to air things out and let things go in hopes that it will help us start fresh and move forward.
That brings us to the art of admission—or rather, admission as art, which is a perfect way to describe the killer new EP from Bad Static. Over the course of three fast and fierce songs, the bandmates lay themselves bare, displaying an intense vulnerability while sharing their faults, fears and demons as they sing of self-destructive tendencies, toxicity and being haunted from both people from the past and voices from beyond the grave.
From the NYC Riot Grrrl Punk band, this is Cherry Cyanide.
Ahead of the release, Bad Static lead singer and rhythm guitarist Nicol Maciejewska sent over some intel on the band’s brand-new EP and the difficulties, frustrations and personal craving for honesty and self-improvement that inspired it.
“I created the Cherry Cyanide EP as a way to express my feelings of paranoia that have been residing within me. The track ‘Reanimation’ has been about my struggle dealing with death and feeling like the other side has been communicating with me. It’s about moments when you feel like you’re going crazy and sometimes I just need to scream about it. I think the bigger picture of the EP is about being able to acknowledge that toxic behavior deep within you and instead of hiding it you let it be known. We’re all imperfect and acknowledging that is your first step to be able to grow and be a bigger person.”
The band also sent some intel on each of the tracks, sharing broad strokes on the songs as well as individual input from the members of Bad Static, which in addition to Nicol Maciejewska includes Kelsie Williams as bassist and back-up vocalist, Mario DiSanto as lead guitarist and Demetrio Abikkaram-Ricardo on drums.
CHERRY CYANIDE—TRACK BY TRACK:
“’Cherry Cyanide’ is about being the toxic person in a relationship. Sometimes, you get lost in the chase for someone, and once you finally have their full attention, you don’t want them anymore. You know it’s going to happen, it’s a vicious cycle. The lyrics suggest that when you kiss someone they become your victim because they ingested the poison—the poison being your interest at first glance, but leaving them hanging…dead. The song is an ode to ‘70s bands like The Runaways and The Anemic Boyfriends with its retro guitar sound.”
“I wrote ‘Cherry Cyanide’ because I found this video of somebody making cyanide from cherry pits,” Nicol added. “I thought it was a really cool name so naturally I wanted to turn it into a femme fatale style song.”
“’Ectoplasm Nightmares’ is about feeling haunted by people from your past and going to drastic measures to try and forget. The fuzzy guitars bite right through the thundering rhythm section. Supported by harrowing vocals that push you through the song.”
“The chorus for ‘Ectoplasm Nightmares’ was written back in 2019 after my longer term relationship ended,” Kelsie shared. “It was challenging to get over because we decided to still be friends so naturally romantic feelings still lingered. I was willing to destroy myself to keep them in my life. Although this song makes me sad, it’s a great reflection that I’m in a much better place and one day the hauntings do stop.”
“’Reanimation’ is inspired by necromancy. The lyrics discuss hearing voices of the dead inside your head calling you to bring them back to life. The overarching theme is mental illness—are these things really happening or are you going mad? With its repetitive punk riff and haunting vocals, it’s become a fan favorite.”
Under ordinary (what’s ordinary?!) circumstances, this would be when we’d tell you not to miss Bad Static TONIGHT at Arlene’s Grocery, buttttt as the city and scene are sadly, though wisely, riding out the rest of 2021 on pause, instead we will advise you to sit tight and stay tuned for your next opp to catch the band live—
Bring your own sins and be prepared to collectively bear, share, and shed some serious shit. It’s gonna be one hell of an exorcism.
Feature image (provided by the band): Max D’amico