The punk storytellers known as Rare Americans aren’t American at all.
Vancouver bro duo Jared and James Priester with friend guitarist Lubo Ivan have dubbed themselves “crooked and catchy.” They claim to see the world on a tilt, cheering on characters that choose to live life far off the straight and narrow. Taking inspiration from the alt bands of yesteryear, they sound like an energetic lovechild between 90’s ska and street punk, landing somewhere next to genre defying contemporaries Twenty One Pilots.
Rare Americans have been premiering music videos animated in their signature style since 2018, weaving a new tale with each song. September’s release tells the tale of Brittle Bones Nicky, an underdog with a penchant for vigilante justice, while new release Milk Man turns the spotlight to a cash advance shop employee on a rebellious stint to find his true nature. The band creates mythical men and creatures out of contemporary strife, the subversive plot lines providing a fantastical take on common themes of corruption and abuse, all while upholding fiercely individualistic values.
Strategic marketers, they put the “I” back in “indie,” doing all of their own production and marketing. This hands-in-the-grass-roots approach has its advantages: an entirely self-controlled media image that’s as engaging as it is personal. The band goes so far as to give fans behind the scenes song writing, music production, and animation breakdowns, making them all the more personalized and accessible. Only a year old with Youtube views in the millions without a major tour under their belt, you might just have to give these punk craftsman some credit for telling their story exactly the way they intend to.