MANCHESTER, NH — Mallory Weiss is your new favorite band that nobody knows… yet. After over a year of preparation, the group is gearing up to perform their first show with new band members at Concord’s Penuche’s Ale House on Feb. 2. An homage to the early 2000s pop-punk scene that paved the way for the genre, the band describes their sound as indie pop-punk. Fronted by lead vocalist and lead guitarist, Steven Chagnon, Mallory Weiss’ style sounds familiar.
“I want it to feel nostalgic, every time I’m playing,” said Chagnon of Bow. “There’s definitely something that sounds a little bit new about it but, I don’t really know what it is, but for me it’s all about nostalgia.”
In terms of their major influences, each member of the four-man group has a variety of favorites. Taking Back Sunday, Blink-182, Descendants and Foo Fighters, to name a few.
“There’s a lot of music between the four of us that we pull from,” said drummer Steve “Sven” Silvestri, Belmont.
However, it’s not just their music that makes Mallory Weiss a great band; it’s also the bond between them.
Noah Brochu, rhythm guitar/vocals, and Chris Rydel, bass/vocals, both from Concord, worked with Chagnon at a local pizza shop, Checkmate, for several years.
“We always joked about starting a band, and it’s kind of funny that we actually started one. We used to come up with the silliest names,” said Chagnon.
While Silvestri did not work at Checkmate with the others, Chagnon knew that he had talent.
“I found Steve on YouTube when was 15 years old playing the drums and I was like, I’m going to find this kid. I drove to his house, I told his parents that I was going to pick him up and take him, and they let me take him,” Chagnon laughed.
Given the subject matter of the three songs that will be released on their EP, it is clear why the group is so close. Anticipated hit, “Mission Hill,” was inspired by Chagnon after he spent a night wandering the Boston neighborhood. Along with “Diamond Cut” and “El Dorado,” fast-paced and seemingly upbeat songs, beautifully contradicted by dark lyrics, all the songs have a similar, overarching theme: struggle.
“A lot of writing comes from your own personal emotions. If you’re not with people you’re comfortable with, it’s not going to be genuine,” said Brochu.
They even drew inspiration from their personal strife to come up with the band’s name. Mallory Weiss (pronounced Mallory VICE) Syndrome or the Mallory Weiss Tear is a gruesome condition in which ulcers form in the stomach as a result of excessive drinking.
“I can actually take credit for that one,” said Rydel. “I used to drink way too much. Two years with the cork in the bottle now. I got to a point where I drank so much and did so much cocaine, I started puking blood frequently,” he explained.
“I think all four of us have been in a drinking hole at some point in our lives,” Rydel continued. “It sounds cool and has some history behind it.”
While jam bands and folk music previously dominated the scene, struggle and nostalgia is the driving force behind what connects Mallory Weiss to their musical role models of the late 90s – early 2000s.
“The music scene that we’re in now, I think it ties in with the music scene for our genre and our style, maybe 9 or 10 years ago,” said Brochu.
“I think local music is getting heavier and faster. There’s definitely a lot of new sounds being played around town,” added Rydel.
An ode to the musical trailblazers who came before them, a new sound for an aging generation, Mallory Weiss is a powerhouse band that lives up to expectations and beyond. But when it’s all said and done, it’s group of four friends who love to play music.
“We’re just a bunch of sad millennials who want their music back,” said Chagnon.
Can’t make it to the show? Mallory Weiss’ EP will be available on streaming services on Feb. 2. Stay tuned to their Facebook and Instagram pages for announcements, schedule, new music, and merchandise.