PEP originally began as the solo project of Starlight Girls drummer Karys Rhea. In the fall of 2011, after hearing Runaround Sue playing in a clothing store, Rhea became nostalgic and downloaded over 100 albums from the 50s and early 60s. Soon after that, she couldn’t stop humming those infectious doo-wop style melodies indicative of the era. These stylings are front and center on Stephen which MTV Hive described as “…the Brooklyn-based musician’s influences — ’60s girl groups like the Shangri-Las and The Ronettes — shine through on the track which could just as easily be found issuing from the radio of a 1967 Chevrolet Chevelle as from your iTunes.” If you’re fed up with the wind and rain, Stephen is sure to get you dreaming about the summer with its lazy, summer guitar melodies, soft drum beat and rhythmic finger clicking. The track has been recently released on Soundcloud, you can hear it here (and if you hang on until the end, the EP’s title track will also play).
Stephen can be found on the upcoming PEP EP, My Baby and Me, which has an updated release date of February 11 (pushed back from the original December 3 release date) on digital/cd/7″ vinyl. The EP features Emil Hewitt (Emil & Friends) on bass and was mixed by Jake Aron (Jamie Lidell, Grizzly Bear, Chairlift, Yeasayer). PEP has announced the first batch of live dates for the new year as well including the February 10 record release show at the Mercury Lounge in New York.
Karys began recording the album, My Baby And Me EP, in early 2012 while she was on a three-month tour of the heartland with Starlight Girls. When she returned to Brooklyn, the next obvious step was to assemble a band and bring these songs to life on stage. After a few initial line-up changes, PEP has settled into a tight knit act that includes Morgan Lynch and Ilana Webber on backing vocals and percussion, Eric Jackowitz on drums, Teddy Williams on bass and David Origlieri on guitar. In a live setting, the six piece set up truly breathes a vintage wind into PEP’s unique brand of indie doo-wop. PEP completes the picture with an army of back-up singers and choreographed moves reminiscent of 1960s girl groups who all clearly provide an inspirational spring board.
PEP will be playing various live dates in New York throughout 2014. Find out more here.
You can catch PEP live on the following dates:
January 22 – New York, NY @ BreakThru Radio
February 10 – New York, NY @ Mercury Lounge (record release show)