Band of the Week: Pronoun

MEET THE BAND: Alyse Vellturo (vocals, guitar, drum programming, bass programming)

AN EMO-ROCK-POP HYBRID: Vellturo grew up listening to lots of hip-hop before gravitating to indie rock. "My transition into rock was the Strokes," she says. "I worked at a record store, and they would pay me in CDs. I used to grab all the rap albums. But the first Strokes album had just come out and the cover caught my eye. I then started to listen to bands like Dashboard Confessional and Third Eye Blind and stuff like that. It was emo-rock-pop."

FORMALLY EDUCATED: Vellturo attended Berklee College of Music prior to starting her band Pronoun. "It was super interesting," she says. "Everyone there has to audition to get in. Your prerequisites are classes on harmonies and things like that. No matter what you were majoring in, you had to do jazz theory and classical theory. I hadn't had any formal training. I had no experience recording, and I learned about microphones and how to record. It was great." About four or five years later, she started writing and recording as Pronoun. Her first EP, there's no one new around you, came out in 2016. "If you listen to it, it's pretty simple," she says of the EP. "It was fun to make. To me, the coolest thing that has ever fucking happened is that it even came out." She followed it up with this year's i'll show you stronger, another terrific release of synth-pop indie rock.

FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES: Chris Carrabba of Dashboard Confessional recently tweeted about her, and the two have become friends. "I got a Twitter notification on my phone, and he was calling out new emo music he likes and mentioned me. I internally freaked out. He is a pretty big story about why I wanted to start making music. I sent him a message and said, 'Thanks.' I played Nashville recently, and he came to the show, and we hung out."

WHY YOU SHOULD HEAR HER: "You're not trying at all," the synth-driven opening track on i'll show you stronger, features layers of beautiful vocals that almost give it a Cocteau Twins feel, and shimmering guitars bring "run," a song that finds Vellturo adroitly alternating between singing and speaking, to life. Vellturo's raspy vocals on "Sadie" recall the Psychedelic Furs' Richard Butler, and the undulating "some people" features whispered vocals. "The lyrics ended up pouring out but it took a while," she says of writing the songs on the full-length. "In some places, I don't think it sounds as good as it could. I think that's part of what makes it different ... so I'm happy with how it came out. It took forever and then came together quickly in the end. It's not really a breakup album, but the songs are about finding yourself after a breakup and getting on with your life."


WHERE YOU CAN SEE HER: Pronoun performs with Real Friends and Keep Flying at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 30, at Mahall's 20 Lanes in Lakewood.