PREMIERE: Stream PONY’s Fiery and Sweet EP, ‘Do You’
Bratty ’90s jams from Toronto
Year after year, Toronto’s Buzz Records steadily climbs as one of the most exciting independent labels in the music scene. They’ve seen acclaimed releases from punk acts as Greys and Dilly Dally, an impressive push into viral stardom surrounding indie pop band Weaves’ latest release Wide Open, and dabbled with enthralling indie/experimental/pop groups as Twist, Casper Skulls and Fake Palms. Their roster is impressive, their discography is substantial, and today, the label shares with MASS APPEAL the latest release out of their collective of colorful projects: PONY’s Do You.
PONY is a quartet masterminded by singer/guitarist Sam Bielanski, joined with bass player Eva Link, drummer Matt Sandrin and guitarist Stephen Giroux. Their debut sound might’ve once been described as leftover sugary jam-outs from a faux-’90s teeny-bopper movie. Their Crushed EP showcased the band’s love of fuzz and catchy rhythms and lyrics, but at the top of the year, the group released the single “D.I.Y.“, pushing the group’s bubblegum poppiness to the forefront of their sound, through and Bielanski’s nearly bratty vocals.
Today, however, this stream for Do You showcases a different breed of PONY – mature, polished, mindful. Guitars sound cleaner this go-round, much groovier. Bielanski sounds more focused, confident, less harsh and more introspective. Songs like “Healthy Brain” and “Fingernails” call for singalongs and dancing, “I Don’t Know,” is heavy enough for a mosh pit, but polite enough for no one to get hurt. The EP ultimately shows off their range, band dynamic and promise for an upcoming LP.
Do You was recorded by Shehzaad Jiwani from Greys over the summer. Bielanski commented on the project for Mass Appeal:
“I spent a long time trying to be the kind of person that I thought everyone would like, and it almost killed me. Entering the later half of my 20s kind of made me spiral into this deep dark hole. I felt really hopeless and unmotivated, but mostly just tired and apathetic. I felt really ashamed that I couldn’t pull myself together, so I just watched a lot of TV and tried to catch up on sleep. Realizing that you are depressed, anxious, and struggling with an eating disorder at 26 is effing hard, but it was actually way harder to ask for help.
“I really wanted to write the kind of songs that people would want to jump on their beds pant less to, but that were also genuine and honest. (I know I’m not the only one out there quarterlife crisising.) I had to learn that it’s okay to struggle with your mental health, and its okay to be confused, and its okay to not like yourself because of it. Your illness doesn’t define you, and you shouldn’t give an uptown funk what anyone else thinks. Truly, the best advice I ever got was from some drunk guy who said “if you give 0 fucks, you’ll be unfuckwithable”. “do you” is basically the prequel to me becoming unfuckwithable. So stay tuned 😉
Stream the entirety of Do You up top, pre-order the project at Buzz Records’ official webstore.