Courtesy of Cindy Grote
The members of grunge rock band Friendly Faux might be longtime friends, share hometowns and even musical influences, but each of them add an individual flavor to the band’s sound.
“It’s pretty much just all of our musical influences that we have and we just put it in a blender,” said drummer Brandyn Morit. “Like a banana, strawberries, a little bit of pineapple. And then we just have like a power smoothie.”
The Columbus-based trio met while attending Hayes High School in Delaware, Ohio, and although they were all graduated by 2006, they didn’t get serious about assembling a band until last summer.
But before coming together as Friendly Faux, the members were all part of separate bands, Off the Beaten Path and The Seasonal Help, which they remain involved with, said bassist and vocalist Charis Yost.
Yost and Geoff Spall, Friendly Faux’s guitarist and vocalist, are in Off the Beaten Path and Morit and Spall are both in The Seasonal Help.
“We stay in the other bands because we love making and playing music, and each band is a different outlet,” he said.
Yost also said forming Friendly Faux was a chance they jumped at to play together and mix styles.
“We wanted a more tight-knit three piece, that’s kind of what we went for,” he said. “Off the Beaten Path, that’s a little bit more spacey, and The Seasonal Help, that’s a little more mellow and calmed down. So we wanted something edgy (with Friendly Faux).”
“I kind of think of it as a small, faster moving band,” chimed in Spall. “And it just functions like a power trio punk band would. Influenced by grunge punk rock, we grew up with that music so that kind of fits our attitude.”
Spall then mentioned most of the band’s influences stem from various punk bands such as Queens of the Stone Age, Nirvana and Arctic Monkeys.
When it comes to attitude on stage, Morit said they just try to “rock hard and be as tight as possible.”
“I think our presence onstage is very natural, yet intense in the same aspect. Controlled chaos,” Yost said.
Spall’s favorite live show was something he called a “cornfield kegger” in Mansfield, Ohio, last summer, and he said playing at house parties is always gratifying.
“We enjoy playing house shows the most. It seems like it’s a less controlled environment than a club or a bar,” he said. “We’ve played a lot of cool house shows with a lot of very cool people and most of the time with house shows you reach people who don’t ordinarily go to shows, so you connect with them on a different level than with people that are out judging seven bands at once. They see your band and connect with you personally.”
Yost agreed and said seeing fans so connected with the band at previous performances is the most rewarding part for him.
“When you see someone from the last show and they’re front row center waiting to see you again, that’s what makes you feel good about it,” Yost said. “I think that would be a thing that keeps me going.”
Yost also said his favorite show was the Worst Kept Secret Fest on Oct. 5 at Dude Locker on East Hudson Street, and he is looking forward to the second installment April 20.
“Last time we had like over 200 people there, sold out with four kegs, so we’re really excited about getting our hands involved with that and being able to be a part of that a second time around,” he said.
Friendly Faux released an EP in early December, and Yost said the band is looking to add a few more songs and finish the CD in the next few months.
Spall said his longtime goal for the band is to make an impact on its audience.
“I want bands like us, and young people, to be inspired by rock ‘n’ roll again, and that’s my goal in music,” he said.
Friendly Faux is scheduled to perform Friday at Bethel Road Pub at midnight. There will be a $3 cover.