Starting their music career on a high note in December 2005, the Ice Cream Socialists played their first performance ever at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, Ga., opening for Tegan and Sara. While the Ice Cream Socialists partly got that gig because their accordion player, Talia Bromstad, is a cousin of the Canadian duo, they say they "impressed the crowd with their melodic, rambunctious sound." The song "Zagnut's Revenge," found on the album Belles and Missiles, features their indie pop flair that weaves quirky vocals with piano, violin, guitar, bass, drums and, of course, accordion.
From Athens, Ga., the Ice Cream Socialists compare their songwriting to the Mates of State, Architecture in Helsinki and They Might Be Giants. The Socialists' music fits into "unabashed pop," they say, but they refuse "to be bound by traditional three-chord progressions." The band showcases Ben Austin on keys and vocals, Payton Bradford and Jonathan Pride on drums, Talia Bromstad on accordion and vocals, Stephanie Davis on violin and vocals, Brantley Jones on bass and vocals and Charlie Key on guitar, toy piano and vocals.
In early 2006, the band began working on their debut album, Belles and Missiles, with a local recording legend, Chris Bishop, who has engineered for bands such as Elf Power. The Ice Cream Socialists say "a glorious chaos ensues" in their music full of "unconventional song writing, anthemic choruses and layered instrumentation," and they advise you to "hold onto your head."