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The Yes Way makes headway to Columbus

Courtesy of Michael Weintrob

With two new band members in tow and a recently-released single, indie rock band The Yes Way returns to the underground Columbus music scene with a transformed sound.

As a self-described atmospheric rock group, the five-member band is scheduled to perform 9 p.m. Friday at The Circus Bar, located on the corner of 5th Avenue and High Street.

The show will mark the band’s third performance in Columbus and is part of its four-day mini tour, which kicked off Wednesday in Pittsburgh.

“Barcelona,” the recently released single from The Yes Way’s yet-to-be-named EP, hit more than 5,000 plays within the first few weeks of its release, but the band members said they have even higher aspirations for the future.

“It’s all about having a positive mentality – to saying yes instead of no. It’s about being open to surprises. That’s what the name of the group means and that’s what we’re all about,” said lead singer Aaron Mendelsohn.

Its EP is promising for a release in roughly two months. Ian Mellencamp, who plays bass for the group and is one of the newest members, whispered that its next single “Anchor” could even be released within the next few weeks.

Mellencamp has been rooted in the music industry for years.

He is the nephew of Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member John Mellencamp.

“Seeing my uncle in the music industry at his scale gave me a vision. It made me feel like I could do this – do music – for a living,” Ian Mellencamp said. “But our band doesn’t sound anything like my uncle’s. I enjoy his music and he’s definitely influenced me to pursue music, but we’re more inspired by funky rhythms and dissonant sounds. We’re still evolving.”

Zach Hume, production director for The Yes Way, agreed and said the band takes its own direction instead of being influenced by other artists.

“They don’t really follow any band of pop culture before them or sound like any other group,” Hume said. “They’re experimental and melodic and less poppy.”

The newest members of The Yes Way are Ian Mellencamp, who joined in October 2011 and Josh Rouah, who joined in the beginning of the year.

“It’s been a pretty big change for me and the band, but we already have a kind of tradition after every local show in Manhattan,” Ian Mellencamp said. “We go back to our rehearsal space and jam for hours on end – for what feels like forever. That’s the most fun that we ever have. It’s just a party jam session.”

While Mendelsohn said he can’t speak on how successful the band will be, he said he’s dedicated to making sure it is in some way.

“Everything in my life is shaped around pushing this band and making this band happen. We’re gaining new momentum. We’re excited about the future and the unknown. We’re ready to be on the road.”

Tickets are available the day of the show and cost $5 at the door for ages 21 and up and $7 at the door for ages 18 to 20.

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