Don’t let the acoustic instruments and copious mustaches fool you. While rousing folk-pop has had its moment in the sun thanks to Mumford & Sons and the Lumineers, Saintseneca cut a far darker path. Zac Little formed the band in 2009, but the revolving door of musicians in and out of the group means Saintseneca has been forced to evolve over time. They started out playing in front of punk crowds, and as a result, Saintseneca’s music is spiked with punk urgency. Tension sits at the core: Little wrote the songs for the band’s second album, Dark Arc, on a bass guitar, and the minimal set-up allows for push-and-pull between the four band members.
Saintseneca’s multi-part harmonies can go from a sweet coo into a full roar at the drop of a hat, and the songs often follow suit. The band stopped by Studio 1A recently, and one of the highlights from the live performance was “Blood Bath.” What starts out as an acoustic lullaby soon lives up to its name, thanks to guitar feedback and a driving beat on the back half of the song. It grabs your attention–a trick Saintseneca is honing into a formidable weapon.