Under the influences
If musicians are architects, then the members of Dainesly are building a house for themselves—with room for whoever wants in. They’ve crafted a sound that’s different from their respective past projects for their free album, Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory, slated for release in February. With most of the members involved in other projects and tours throughout the year, they prefer to focus on the music and not sweat the details—even when it comes to the band name.
“With touring, Alex and I would always do coffee dates,” said guitarist and frontman Bryan Daines. “He would always go, ’Well cheers, Dainesly,’ as his little joke or whatever.” The name stuck.
In 2015, Daines, formerly of the Dead Winter Carpenters, met with bassist Alexander Korostinsky to record tracks for a planned EP that was put on hold until Daines formally left the band earlier last year. Those songs, recorded to eighth-inch cassette tape and mixed by Korostinsky, would eventually make up one half of Dainesly’s debut album.
“I kind of wasn’t getting all the songs I wanted to play with Dead Winter Carpenters and the ones I was getting through—it’s just a different style of band, so it was first just an outlet to go in a different direction,” Daines said.
After completing the lineup with Aaron Chiazza on drums and Shawn Tamborini on pedal steel last year, Dainesly recorded the rest of the tracks to four-track, quarter-inch tape with mixing input from local musician Mark Sexton. The band played its first show as a band at the album release party earlier this year.
“I think there’s like two big benefits to it,” Chiazza said of the decision to record to tape. “One is like the quality of it. It’s cool sounding. It’s gritty. It’s a sound that a lot of people want. And there’s a part of it too that it simplifies the process because we’re engineering our own album.”
The band’s sound is an amalgam of tastes and influences. Daines was raised on the likes of Grateful Dead and Pink Floyd and is inspired by bands like Wilco. Korostisnky and Chiazza draw more from the funk and soul realms. They hesitantly subscribe to the genre of “alt-alt-country,” but even that is up for discussion.
“I’ve always liked the label ’alt-country’ because I think I like to pull from that sonic palette of the twanginess,” Daines said. “But not necessarily have the classic country song structure and subject matter and stuff like that.”
Indeed, his country influences are evident in his rollicking guitar solos on tracks like “Bury Me Nameless” and “Streets.” Korostinsky’s boppy basslines find a steady progression against Chiazza’s rattling snare patterns, while Tamborini’s distorted pedal steel fills any gaps with a shimmery, synth-like veneer.
“I think it makes it interesting because if I’m trying to listen to stuff that sounds like Dainesly, I can’t find it because Aaron and I are so naive to the genre that we’re just pulling from our history as musicians and bringing that to the sound,” said Korostinsky. And that sound has some serious breadth. During the NYE Reno Prom, members of Dainesly plan to team up with Failure Machine for a soul-style tribute to the Misfits.
“We’re going to call it DAINEZIG,” Daines said.