Jan 15 '11 by admin [ Press
FESTIZIO’S NEW STUDIO RELEASE, HOT CITY (ARTICLE BY ROBBIE FRASER)
In the opening minute of their title track “Hot City” you get a good feel for what Festizio’s music really is. The initial crescendo of electronica draws you in before giving way to accompanying guitar riffs. The synth element in the music is always there to compliment, but never totally overtake, as it often does with the growing number of bands now incorporating a more electronic element to their sound. After getting the chance to interview Keane Li, the lead singer and guitarist of Festizio, I realized that the reserved, yet effective balance I heard on the CD is part of what makes Festizio who they are. His attitude seemed to confirm the same calculated, yet melodic vibe the CD projects.
“When it comes down to it, we’re a pretty tame rock band according to the traditional image of rock musicians.” Li says. “We all have professions and we’re all down-to-earth. We’ve never fought and we work (thankfully) well together. We love music and work hard at creating something beautiful to share with others.”
According to Li, the band has plenty of the influences you might expect. Muse popped into my mind early while listening to “Hot City,” and Li confirmed as much, along with mentioning bands like Radiohead and Massive Attack. But they also draw inspiration from a wide array of old and new alternative bands, as well as modern hip-hop. They have a varied appreciation that is indicative of a band that genuinely enjoys and studies the chosen medium for their art.
When asked why he was drawn to music over poetry or other art forms, Li says “Music envelops you, surrounds you in a way that other forms of art can’t necessarily do. It’s like having a soundtrack for your life.”
If that’s Li’s goal, “Hot City” seems like something he and fellow band members Ryan Scott and Nicholas Mitrousis can be proud of.
It’s a goal that they make great strides in achieving by allowing the lyrics to do much of the work. With Festizio, you’re not likely to spend too much time thinking, “what did those guys just say?” If anything, they enunciate too well. While it might detract from the rock of their music, it lets the sometimes poetic nature of the lyrics shine. They are lyrics that portray an image of love and loss with a uniquely San Francisco backdrop.
However, ultimately, Li seems to illuminate the band’s goal best when he says “It’s really all about the experience of listening, I think, and we want to make it meaningful for people.”
He manages to sum up the noble aspiration of a multitude of aspiring artists. And with the release of “Hot City,” Festizio is that much closer.
“Hot City” Release Date: January 12, 2011
(link to review…)
Dec 9 '10 by admin [ Music
Our new album, Hot City, is being featured as one of four albums in The Humble Bundle‘s first volume! Pick your own price and get all four albums while your funds go to benefit both VH1 Save the Music and Little Kids Rock. Great music for a great cause. Can you argue with that?
Dec 3 '10 by admin [ Press
RECORD REVIEW: Festizio (San Francisco)
By: Christopher Petro
Taking aim at love and loss, Hot City shows a band growing from their self-titled debut, proving that the colorful San Francisco four-piece is honing its sound. The moody electric wash is tight with structures that avoid lag or ostentatious solos.
Festizio offers a heavy hand of late ’80s New Age poised on melodic synths, catchy guitar hooks and quirky, heart-on-the-sleeve vocals. The song “Hard to Leave” has a conversational, unhurried rub with a nod to the Talking Heads. The song’s background is hazily lit by distant, murmuring keyboards, rapping percussion and singer Keane Li’s bold voice.
Li’s lyrics have also improved, but could still use tightening, “Why do you keep me from sleeping / how do you keep this fire burning / I find it hard to keep breathing” (“Keep”). Developing the lyrics further could displace the emotional straightforwardness, while adding an endearing level of complexity and depth – an important feat for any band.
Hot City is a cohesive sophomore release that showcases the group’s affection toward edgy guitars, electronic flourishes and measured percussion. It’s exciting to hear a band develop this much in only one album; Festizio has a sound that swells with potential. (Self-Released)
(link to review…)
May 15 '10 by keane [ Press
An amazing review for our first studio album in Geek Girl on the Street!
By Kate Kotler
Mix together Radiohead and Muse, add a dash of the SF music scene, and ice it with the smooth vocals of Keane Li, and what do you get?
This San Francisco band has been around and kicking for quite a while. Those in the know have been enjoying songs such as the slow, soulfully driven “Beautiful” and peppier live favorite “Get Up” at venues such as Slim’s and Grant and Green in SF. Fans get into the groove while watching four accomplished young musicians come together to create a new type of “San Francisco sound.”
In short: Festizio has been a well-kept musical secret for those in the Bay Area for several years.
Now, with the 2009 release of the band’s first studio album (self-titled), Festizio positioned themselves firmly to launch beyond the Bay and onto the national scene.
For a first album, the self-funded, self-produced Festizio (by Festizio) has super-impressive production qualities. It sounds as if the band had been sojourning in Paris with Nigel Godrich or on the road with Rich Costey… It is that professionally and expertly produced.
(I love alliteration.)
To be honest, I haven’t liked a local band this much since the year 2000 when I spent many a night down in LaLa watching Common Rotation (who were at that time known as 28 Orange Street) perform for packed bar crowds…
Listening to Festizio — live or on CD — takes me back to some sort of youthful musical bliss place that inspires me to write poetry or learn how to play the piano. (Or, maybe ukulele… you know, because I’m quirky.)
All in all it’s good stuff. And for $5.99 on CD Baby, it’s a great buy and great way to support indie artists in their quest for musical loveliness.
Seriously: Check out Festizio if you haven’t already — you will be glad you did.
Dec 25 '09 by keane [ Press
Two mentions and listed on the front cover! Not too shabby for our debut in a nationally distributed magazine. Even better, our album appears next to our good friend, Mikie Lee Prasad, a great local musician who we both know and love. The amp review below even features Dangermaker, a band we’ve performed twice with already. The mentioned show was our most recent at San Francisco’s Grant & Green Saloon in North Beach. And yes, that’s a picture of me next to the amp
Download a digital copy of the magazine.
Disclaimer: Although I write for Performer Magazine, I had no influence over our album review and our inclusion in the gear review was by request of the National Editor to test the practical usability of the amps.
Dec 20 '09 by keane [ Press
While we would never designate our sound as anything reminiscent of surf music, we love surfers and are glad to hear they love us too! Our first studio album reviewed by SurfShot:
By SurfShot Crew
Starting off with a mix of great bass riffs/solos, catchy effects driven guitars, in addition with front man Keane Li’s melodic vocals, provide a great mix of emotions. Slower songs like “Hot Blooded Bitch” bring reminiscent memories from bands like Bay Area natives Third Eye Blind, as well as vocal influences from Muse on the first track “Alive.” Rounding off with a piano-like ballad sounding like Coldplay, “Every Now and Again,” and a final surprising twist of acoustic guitar and orchestra background with their last track “One More Time.” The overall feel of the album includes a mix of melody, tempo, and sound as well as lyrical content that definitely sets Festizio apart.