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Bent Shapes Remind Us ‘What We Do Is Public,’ Whether We Realize or Not

The single comes from the band's sophomore album, 'Wolves of Want,' coming March 11

Boston’s premiere “post-collegiate” indie rock outfit, Bent Shapes, admittedly contribute to the smartphone-obsessed culture, but on their single “What We Do Is Public,” they don’t hold back their resentments about it. The track starts with the Beatles’ mimicking lines, “I’ve just seen a face / I can’t forget the date and place,” which opens up a Pandora’s box of documenting everything we do while not actually doing anything.

Off of the band’s upcoming sophomore album, Wolves of Want (out March 11 via Slumberland Records) the track was recorded with the help of Titus Andronicus’ Elio DeLuca. It’s “a takeoff on ‘What We Do Is Secret’ by the Germs, which I always assumed was about preserving punk rock and the underground music scene as a haven for misfits who felt more comfortable there,” says lead vocalist Ben Potrykus. “When I think about this concept, and the fact that pre-internet (or at least pre-social media) bands and music communities often gained notoriety based on mystique (what people didn’t know about them), it seems ridiculous.” He adds:

You can’t go to a show in 2016 without seeing someone who is so focused on documenting the event with pictures and videos they’re seamlessly uploading to the internet that they don’t seem to be watching or listening to the show as its happening. Why would someone sacrifice being present for a potentially great experience to attain that level of documentation? What’s the ersatz souvenir worth if it represents an experience you never even had? Photographers hone their skills or pay their bills by spending entire shows behind the lens. But for others, it seems to be a part of the performative way we keep track of our lives on public forums, meticulously curating a sort of application for the interest of potential friends, lovers, admirers, “connections”, etc. Of course, this interest, if pursued, would only result in relationships subject to further neglect as we continue to update our profiles and accounts 24/7. Meanwhile, we willingly surrender our geotagged, rapaciously aggregated personal information to large corporations and government agencies for more effective tracking, monitoring, and targeted marketing in the process. These are things I think about constantly, despite the fact that I probably got sucked into my smart phone while I was writing these lyrics. Anyway, you clicked something to read this, too, and because of your interest in our streaming song, we recommend the following LP.

Listen to “What We Do Is Public” here and find the cover art and track list below.


Wolves of Want track list:
1. “New Starts In Old Dominion”
2. “86’ed In ’03”
3. “Third Coast”
4. “USA vs POR”
5. “Realization Hits”
6. “What We Do Is Public”
7. “Xerox Voids”
8. “Samantha West”
9. “Beton Brut”
10. “Intransitive Verbs”

Tags: bent shapes