Who are Beware Fashionable Women (aka: BFW)?
I could give a brief lecture on the band's origins -- who the members are, how they met, and so on and so forth. But I won't.
For one thing, BFW is a new band, set to release their self-titled debut this summer. More importantly, though, the band wants to steer away from explaining themselves through your typical band bio -- so says lead singer/guitarist, Barak Shpiez.
Instead, BFW lets their music do the talking. "Right now, we're trying to hook people with our music," Barak says. "We'll leave BFW's biography in the hands of history." For now, the band is content to make music that touches people deeply, much like Weezer's Blue Album seemed to hit an enduring chord with kids coming of age in the early nineties.
"We're just a couple of dudes making music for people who love music as much as we do," Barak says. And people do love their music. Already, BFW has a small, but growing, legion of fans eagerly awaiting their debut LP. And that's just how the band wants it. "We want to be the kind of band that has a small niche of loyal fans who buy our music and come to our concerts."
Chances are you'll get hooked to BFW, too, if your into early Weezer (ie: The Blue Album and Pinkerton), the complex vocal harmonies of The Beach Boys, or the pop-punk mishmash of The Violent Femmes. And let's not forget the dark, yet hauntingly beautiful music of The Eels.
Barak credits The Eels as one of the bands that shaped the band's sound. "All my favorite bands create a contrast between upbeat pop music on one hand and dark, emotionally-charged lyrics on the other," he tells me. "The music punctuates and accentuates the lyrics."
BFW's most impressive quality, though, beyond their knack for weaving different genres of music together, is how open and accessible they are to their fans. For instance, if you message the band on their MySpace page will receive a prompt response from one of the band members. Email them and you'll get some songs from their album, free of charge. "We want to give as much to our fans without devaluing the music," Barak explains.
This music-centric philosophy underpins everything BFW does. Take their album cover, which depicts Audrey Hepburn's beaming face, a la Breakfast at Tiffany's, beckoning to passersby. Barak explains: "We wanted to connect our music to an evocative visual, something that would stick in people's minds and encourage them to listen to our music."
The band's debut album will be available for download in a few weeks on iTunes and Rhapsody.com for $10. If you attend one of their concerts, however, you can purchase the album for $5.
If you can't wait, though, you can purchase their album directly by visiting www.bewarefashionablewomen.com.
Interview by Robert Pyon ©2008