NPR logo Second Stage: Bad Sound, 'Beautica'

Second Stage: Little-Known Bands You Should Hear

Second Stage: Bad Sound, 'Beautica'

Bad Sound
Courtesy of the artist
Bad Sound
Courtesy of the artist

Sometimes, all you need is a song that makes you want to roll down your windows and shout along joyfully.

Bad Sound's "Beautica" is one of those songs. A bouncy pop tune with psychedelic synth lines, multipart harmonies and a scruffy garage-rock breakdown, it's the sound of longtime friends having a lot of fun.

Bad Sound
Courtesy of the artist
Bad Sound
Courtesy of the artist

Second Stage: Bad Sound, 'Beautica'

Beautica

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/142861119/142905808" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • from Bad Sound
  • by Bad Sound

Band members Connor Benincasa, Jacob Sachs-Mishalanie, Zeno Pittarelli, Nicole Rahn and Zach Marsh met while attending middle school in a suburb of Utica, N.Y. Today, the majority of the band attends various colleges in New York, while Benincasa, the youngest member, is still in high school.

"Beautica" exudes youthful enthusiasm, as well as a surprising amount of maturity and pop craftsmanship. The song's jubilant sound so effortlessly sweeps you along that you almost forget to listen to the words, which were inspired by a car bombing in Kabul: "I've got a car in my driveway / I've got a kid in my home / I've got friends with the spirits / So today I'm driving out alone / Girls, say goodbye to your fathers / Today we go northeast / Hopefully, we make it past the river."

Lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Zeno Pittarelli told us more about how "Beautica" came about:

Zeno Pittarelli:

"Beautica" was the first tune Jake and I wrote for Bad Sound. I wrote the words to the song after reading an article about a car bombing in Kabul. For whatever reason, the story stuck with me.

Ironically, "Beautica" was the last song we recorded. When working on the album, we focused a lot on instrumentation and arrangements, and as a result, "Beautica" was recorded many times over, in many different ways — more than any other song on the album.

Check out more from Bad Sound here.

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