The Men are releasing a krautrock-inspired LP as Dream Police

The two guitarists in shape-shifting Brooklyn four-piece The Men are putting out an LP of krautrock-inspired tunes with their label Sacred Bones. Nick Chiericozzi and Mark Perro are going by the name Dream Police, the album is called Hypnotized and it's coming out on November 11. Listen to "Pouring Rain" here.

The switch makes sense, since the band has never really kept a consistent sound from album to album. Leave Home got really fucking heavy at points, and then two years later they threw in blues and country while recording in the Catskills. They've also put out two solid "rock" LPs in between.

Dream Police isn't a new concept though. The project has been around since at least 2011, with a handful of shows and a cassette-only release. The two have been playing under the name "The Men" since 2008.

Here's a clip from "Let it Be", half of a 25-minute tape they put out as Dream Police before their Sacred Bones debut as The Men came out in 2011.That LP (Leave Home) ended with "Night Landing", essentially a Dream Police song pegged to a bipolar (and excellent) record by The Men. Read a 2011 interview with Nick from The Men / Dream Police here.


The Men's "Different Days"

[youtube]Have some pent-up angst? Let Brooklyn's The Men take it from here. "Different Days" is an ideal anthem for a love/hate relationship with youth, and just a really solid summer tune. It's off Tomorrow's Hits, which came out in March, and keeps the twang they've developed over the last couple years. Tomorrow's Hits may not pack the same punch as their Sacred Bones debut Leave Home, but it builds off the solid rock & roll they've been putting out in subsequent records.  They won't be in Montreal again until Osheaga, but until then you can read this interview from 2011 when they came through with Thee Oh Sees.

Rough All Over

With dirty distortion, spacey jamming and Stooge-esque ferocity, The Men somehow manage to sound like punk’s roots and its future at the same time.

They bang through rough, rocking numbers and intense verging-on-hardcore passages, bringing together elements of krautrock and shoegaze for a record that’s as brilliant as it is varied.

Their latest LP Leave Home brought them on their first cross-country tour this past summer, and a whole new audience heard their Brooklyn-born sonic assault.

“Depending on how we’re feeling we have what we call our ‘bangers,’ the punk, faster songs, or maybe we’ll start with the dronier, quieter songs that gradually get louder and end in noise,” said the band’s lead guitarist, Nick Chiericozzi.

“It depends on the night if we play the heavy stuff or the psychedelic stuff. The response has been good,” he said. “People have been saying they’ve been liking the slower stuff, along with the heavy stuff that Chris [Hansell] usually sings on.”

The trio added Rich Samis behind the kit after recording Leave Home, allowing for both Chiericozzi and Mark Perro to ignite their six-string power. On their forthcoming record, tentatively titled Open Your Heart and surfacing this spring, the band managed to discover yet another side of their sound.

“Now Mark and I can weave guitars a little more and double stuff,” said Chiericozzi. “We want [this time] to be able to discern different stuff that you couldn’t on the fuzziness on Leave Home, which was cool because it had its own personality, but we wanted to get things a little cleaner.”

The drums on all their released material (most of which you can download here) are played by Perro, Hansell and Chiericozzi, adding a simple, driving rhythmic wall for crunchy guitar and bass.

“When the three of us were playing drums, we didn’t really know what we were doing,” laughed Chiericozzi. “Which is cool because I like simple drums, but Rich can do that and he can also do other stuff that we couldn’t do. Not necessarily busier, but he’s able to pull more off.”

Pedal-steel and slide guitar find their way onto the new stuff, and they’re continuing their punk rock allusions, too. Leave Home shares its title with an early Ramones album, and the next record will likely give a nod to their forefathers, Iggy and the Stooges.

“If you look at the track order for Raw Power, we’re kind of thinking about mimicking that, where there’s the idea to have the song order on one side kind of match with the other,” he said.

Leave Home was recorded on tape, a first for the band. It was a perfect match for their building, brooding aggression, and Open Your Heart was done the same way, also engineered by Ben Greenberg.

“It was something we’d always wanted to do, but we never found the engineer we wanted to work with,” said Chiericozzi. “So we always went with the digital way. I think our sound just fits with the warmer tone of tape.”

It’s pretty evident when you experience the depth of Leave Home’s distorted haze and the crunch of its clipping drum tracks just how important studio environment is to this live production. Onstage, it transforms into a sweaty, powerful mass of punk fury with influence flying in from both sides of the Atlantic. With a full-time drummer, things will only get bigger.

“Mark and I always wanted to have the ability to have two guitars working together, to be able to build off each other,” said Chiericozzi. “So it’s really cool to be able to make that happen.”

Originally published by The Link Newspaper.