Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Band of the Week: Soft Copy 

MEET THE BAND: Skylar Keffer (vocals, guitar), Paul Ryan (guitar, vocals), Matt Novak (drums, percussion), Mike Abbadini (electric piano, keyboards, vocals)

A HIGH LONESOME MIDWESTERN FOLK THING: This Cleveland band formed a few years ago and the lineup has shifted over the years. Keffer originally joined as a guitarist and only recently became the band's principal songwriter. "We've all played in bands around Cleveland since we've been teenagers," he says. "We have a lot of influences from '90s rock. I like Jason Molina and some of the early bands on the Secretly Canadian record label. I really dig the 'high lonesome Midwestern folk' stuff that came out of that era." The band put out an album a couple of years ago, but Ryan wrote all the songs for that album. Keffer wrote all the songs on the band's new album, The Big Quiet.

A 'SUPER CREePY' SPACE: The band spent the past year recording its new album, The Big Quiet, in a former medical clinic building that Keffer says is "out in the sticks." "It was awesome," he says. "The building is super creepy. It's this old medical building. It's super isolated out there. We recorded the drums in the X-ray room, which has lead walls, so it has really wild reverb. It was a weird place to do it."


WHY YOU SHOULD HEAR THEM: "Passion Flake," the opening track on The Big Quiet, features listless vocals and immersive guitar solos as it creates a Dinosaur Jr.-like wall of sound. "I'll Get Used to It" features a spacey mid-song bridge that shows off the band's psychedelic side. The droning "Another Planet Earth" has a Smashing Pumpkins vibe to it. "Paul [Ryan] brings the texture to the songs," says Keffer. "I bring things to the band in a standard classic singer-songwriter kind of way and Paul layers wonderful things over it. I write on acoustic guitar and bring the song to the band, and everyone just absolutely fucks it up, and I love it."

WHERE YOU CAN SEE THEM: Soft Copy performs with Factual Brains and the Swimfan at 9 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 19, at the Little Rose Tavern.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 21, 2020

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


Staff Pick Events

  • Open Turntable Tuesday @ The Winchester

    • Tuesdays

© 2020 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation