The band plays their infectiously catchy songs on tour with the legendary, Billy Idol
“Da da do do do do do do do do do do do do do da da da do do do do do do do do do.” If you haven’t heard BRONCHO’s new hit, “Class Historian,” the lyric above means nothing to you. If you have heard the song, you’re probably cursing this article for bringing the catchy chorus back on repeat in your head.
Ryan Lindsey cements himself on stage, taking the shape of a slacker rocker—baseball cap and loose sweater dragging down to a low-hanging guitar—but within this static slacker figure is a musical mind, gifted with a natural aptitude to flush-out pop hit after punk hit. Perhaps a dead giveaway of the genius behind Lindsey, who languidly chews gum between lyrics, are his furrowed brows and determined angry eyes aimed at the back of the room the whole set through. Pairing melody and lyric comes effortlessly to Lindsey—like a dream.
“I have these recurring dreams of the town I grew up in, but it’s really squished together. Like all the main parts of the city are really close to each other and you can just walk everywhere, like from my house to downtown to my friend’s neighbourhood. Everything is almost cartoonish—how close it all is. Those are my favourite dreams to have about growing up, because it’s this different version of the way things happened. They’re always kind of dark, and it’s always at night, the temperature’s always perfect.”
The distorted dreams of Lindsey’s youth in his native town, Norman, Oklahoma, creeped their way into his psyche while writing the band’s second album, Just Enough Hip to Be Woman.
“When writing [the record], I never was consciously thinking about this being a record about all these things. It just kind of happened,” he said.
Lindsey’s childhood revelry is tell-tale of BRONCHO’s sound: the songs have soaked-up the fleeting moments of the songwriter’s childhood. They’re quick, upbeat, and bottle the badass attitude of a kid at a punk show. The songs also meet youth with nostalgia; one of the slower songs on the new album, “Stay Loose,” pulls at your heart strings by means of the minimal guitar riffs hitting the saddest and happiest notes of your past.
“That’s a song on the record that really hit a certain tone with the nostalgic past,” he said. “It kind of connected some dots between where we were going and where I wanted the record to end up going from our first record to our second record.”
Whatever elixir Lindsey draws from his dreams and injects into his tunes has been picked-up by big names in sales and shows. Lindsey’s songs have been used by Starbucks, Old Navy, and even a Payless commercial. The band’s song, “It’s On,” was also featured on the HBO series, Girls. The excitement a BRONCHO record induces in a listener can’t be cast aside. Can’t Get Past the Lips, released in 2011, is an album you can pick a fight to—or, at least, fuel a small rebellion.
“We almost got kicked out of our hotel the other night because we found a way onto the roof,” Lindsey said. “There was a phone on the roof, and [Ben King] used it to try and order pizza to the roof…. it was the front desk and they said they didn’t have any pizza. And then they asked if we were on the roof, and [King] said ‘no,’ and they sent a guy up there. So we went up there a few more times, and the last time, the guy came and said ‘no way. You guys gotta get off this roof. No way. Uh uh. Uh uh, guys.’” Lindsey paused for a moment, and concluded with, “Ya, I think we like to have fun.”
Currently on tour with the legendary Billy Idol, BRONCHO has been warming up the sold-out crowds and getting people “feeling good and loose and comfortable.” Idol, whose hit songs have surfed the airwaves for decades, has not yet partaken in any of the band’s parties or pizza-ordering endeavours. “We haven’t had a good ‘Billy hang.’ I really hope it happens,” Lindsey said.
BRONCHO plays Metropolis Feb. 3 with Billy Idol.