1811 14th St. NW
Washington, DC, 20009
Bent Knee is a band without frontiers. The Boston-based group seamlessly connects the worlds of rock, pop and the avant-garde into its own self-defining statement. On its Cuneiform debut release Say So, the band focuses on the sound of surprise. It's rock for the thinking person. The group's lyrics are dark and infused with themes focusing on the emergence of personal demons, unwanted situations and the difficulty of conquering them. Its mercurial sound matches its subject matter. It's a thrilling aural roller-coaster ride with arrangements designed to make listeners throw their arms up in wild abandon as they engage with them.
"Say So resoundingly demonstrates the increasing refinement and confidence of a group that doesn't quite fit any conventional pigeonhole, with emphatic crunch, a knack for complexity, mixed with lively wit," said Steve Smith of The Boston Globe. "Live, the band projects visceral glee, exactingly harmonized and wholly infectious."
Founded in 2009, Bent Knee is a true collective. The band operates as a democratic entity with sky-high standards and a determination to push boundaries. Frontwoman and keyboardist Courtney Swain's acrobatic, multi-octave vocals are nothing less than extraordinary. Guitarist Ben Levin morphs between the hauntingly melodic and extreme, dissonant sonics—sometimes within a single verse or passage. Bassist Jessica Kion and drummer Gavin Wallace-Ailsworth deliver deep and thunderous grooves, full of engaging, intriguing ornamentation. Violinist Chris Baum's driving melodic overlays and atmospheres further take the band's sound into wild territory. And all of it is brilliantly processed and produced by sound designer Vince Welch.
Bent Knee has remained on a skyward trajectory since forming. Its last two albums, 2014's Shiny Eyed Babies and its self-titled 2011 release, have been celebrated as significant art-rock achievements by important music publications, including Wall Street Journal, Consequence of Sound, The Needle Drop, Innerviews, and Eclipsed. The group has performed more than 300 shows across the U.S., Canada and Japan to date and will embark on its first European tour this year. They've also performed at major festivals and venues including The Lincoln Center, ROSfest, Tulsa Center of the Universe, and Campbell Bay Music Fest.
Progressive, forward thinking rock music (Subba-Cultcha)
Indie psyche sludge post-punk (The Deli Magazine)
Twisted psychedelic metal (DC Rock Live)
Absurdly muscled über-psych (IndyWeek Raleigh)
Bluesy, sludgy classic rock (Space City Rock)
Literary, political, sci-fi post-punk (Caught In The Carousel)
Full-fledged psychedelic hard rock (KSCR, USC Radio)
Uniquely brainy hard rock, heavy yet clever in a Torche meets Dismemberment Plan kind of way (The Onion AV Club)
Ted Nugent banging away with Jilted John, or Henry Rollins in a sitcom with Emo Philips (Unpeeled)
Smart, intricate and surprisingly complex hard modern rock (LMNOP)