AOTM Interview: Shy Beast

Posted by admin Category: Artist of the Month

In 2017, Shy Beast introduced itself and offered its complex and appealing music. In the latest single, “My Stride,” it demonstrates its power. Shy Beast hails from Austin but plays to the entire world.

The music showcases Mariclaire Glaeser’s immense vocal range and tones of diamond clarity.  Her voice is feminine but also liberated and absolutely commanding of the songs.  The guitars of David Tenczar and Andrew Bennett are undeterred in growing the forest of melodies in which Glaeser sings. Drew Silverman’s unmistakable drumming guides us through the musical abundance and back again, all hits, no misses.  Farther down in the sonic underworld, Jay Cesak’s bass rhythms don’t wait for verses, choruses or instrumental breaks.  They continue to call until we become the monster and dance with the beast.

We are working closely with Shy Beast through our Artist Development Program and are excited to feature them as the November Artist of the Month. Look out for their new EP coming November 24, and celebrate with the band that night at Spiderhouse Ballroom.

Photos by Dorothy Megan Bennett

First of all, congratulations on being selected as the AMF Artist of the Month! How did you guys first get involved with AMF and what does being the ‘Artist of the Month’ mean to you?

I first met Einar Pedersen in a consultation meeting at AMF. We talked about different ways to “get out there” as a band. This was before we changed our name to Shy Beast. It was super helpful getting some outside perspective from someone with as much experience as he has in the industry. I approached Johnny Goudie at an AMF Q&A last year at Empire Control Room. I wanted to introduce myself and let him know that my band had re-branded and had new music to release. After that, the band hopped on an episode of his podcast. Ever since, I’ve stayed in pretty close contact with AMF and was happy and delighted to learn that we had been chosen to be a part of their Artist Development Program. Monthly discussions with industry experts, as well as one-on-one check-ins have been extremely valuable to me. Being selected as Artist of the Month, was a happy surprise for us. It’s nice to know that what we are doing (being our weird selves) is working, and that we have the support of the distinguished music movers and shakers of AMF.

How did you guys meet one another and eventually become Shy Beast?

I met David Tenczar (vocals, guitar, keys) and Jay Cesak (bass) when I was about 7 years old. They have been friends with my brother Evan since middle school, and have both played music together for years. Andrew Bennett (guitar, synth, vocals) and Drew Silverman (drums) I met a few years after graduating college. I approached David and Andrew about joining forces with me, and Drew and Jay joined not long after.

Can you talk to us about the transformation from being ‘MCG’ to ‘Shy Beast’? What sparked your decision for the name change and rebrand?

MCG was a placeholder name for a band that had no clear branding or direction. We had fun and played good tunes, and had some local support, but it was clear that changes needed to be made. We all sensed the need for change, and after a meeting with a friend/advisor, it became clear that we needed a re-birth. Hence, Shy Beast was born and our pre-mature self remains as just history.

How has your experience been in the Austin music scene? What do you like most about the creative community here?

Austin is a great place to play music, obviously. It feels like just about everyone I meet is involved in some element of live music here. It’s a great community, and I’ve been here for over 12 years. At first, it was intimidating, but now I run into friends and comrades just about everywhere I go. I feel supported. I feel inspired. I love to see so many bands putting in the work, yet also finding time to support each other.

Tell us about one of the coolest shows you’ve ever played.

I gotta say, my favorite show was at the historic Scottish Rite theatre for a Black Fret event. I felt like I was sent back in time. We played in front of a beautiful mural, hemmed in by luxurious curtains. The audience was the most supportive of any we’ve ever encountered to date. I was very emotional. As a musician, you work so hard, and then, every now and then, are surprised and taken aback by the amount of people who want you to succeed.

We love your latest single, ‘My Stride’! Would you tell us a little more about the song, and your creative process?

I wrote the first verse of the song sitting on my couch, and then the chorus in the shower. I thought that maybe a change of scenery might help the creative process and give the song life. The song is about realizing all the different possible futures that are out there, and choosing to walk in a direction, even if you are unsure. To be crippled by choices is not an option to me now. The universe will ensure that you find a way (or at least that’s a pretty thought). Sometimes we co-write, or someone else in the band will present a song. A lot of the exciting stuff happens in the practice space though.

On your website it says that “changes are coming rapidly.” That’s exciting! Can you elaborate on what that means?

We are releasing a new music video and our 2nd EP “Leave Me/Let Me” this month! Stay tuned!!

Ideally, where would you like to see your band in five years?

I’d love to see us recording a full album or two, touring Europe, having dolls accurately designed after our likeness…I want us to still be as excited about writing new songs and performing live as we are today. There are few other things that make me feel so alive.

Lastly, how can we support you? Where can we buy your music and see you next?

You can support us by coming to Spider House on Nov. 24th! We are having a big release show with friends: GO FEVER, SMiiLE, Magic Rockers of Texas, and Duncan Fellows. You will be able to buy and stream our EP everywhere on Nov. 30th. Also, follow us on Instagram at @shybeastmusic and follow and steam us on Spotify. Share our music videos. Buy our merch at shows. Tell people about us if you like what you hear.

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