They sound like they’re crying, but really they’re loving life.
The vocals behind the Brooklyn-based rock group Motive have the grainy affectation of the Strokes’ Julian Casablancas. The lyrics often strike a melancholic, wandering note, such as, “Lost in the morning, now it’s night. I’ll be alright, I’m going” — but this very same song makes for a really great party mix.
To prove it, the band took a remixed version of the track called “It’s Illicit,” and went out to several locations in the city, including Coney Island, and shot a music video featuring New Yorkers volunteering impromptu dance moves to the song.
The rehashed tune, which has the upbeat sound of a Pheonix tune, is easy to dance to, though the addition of an electronic beat and synths only emphasizes what’s already there — the song is very catchy.
The single, “What’s So Bad,” is another one that should get listeners moving their feet. It starts with a grungy and rhythmically fast intro that admits, “I’m 24 now, I live the good life, have 20 more now... I got the summer, that’s all ahead of me.” Then the lyrics quickly turn around to say, “But still somehow, there’s a clog in the drain … for no reason at all, I feel so sad, let’s go running forty miles.”
The song is a perfect encapsulation of the manic energy Motive brings, combining catchy hooks with an underlying aesthetic of moody pensiveness. The lyrics are often incomplete sentences, the tunes are often priority.
Their restless sound also translates to a busy schedule, as the band just finished a fifty-day tour across the country doing thirty-five shows. Their first album is due March 2014, with the first single coming out called “Burn Down Brooklyn.”
Motive at Glasslands (289 Kent Ave. between S. First and S. Second streets, www.thegla