Leave it to the kids —
As what passes for modern “Rock ‘n’ Roll” gets more uptight, inoffensive, and corporate, we must look to the youth for some guidance and a whole lot of help! Not even close to legal drinking age (but musically intoxicating nonetheless), Southern California upstarts Pushing Veronica encourage the sort of uninhibited irreverence that’s worthy of chanting along to in unison. The quartet — Oli Litner [vocals, guitar] Julien Silvas [vocals, guitar] Noah Rozansky [bass] and Brady Ward [drums] craft a catchy and caustic style of their own best described as, “Ballpit Rock.”
Think a post-millennial Blink-182 unafraid to take inspiration from memes and modern pop culture and you’re halfway there…
“Ballpit Rock is how we describe our sound,” explains Oli. “We’re celebrating what makes us all individuals, taking the piss out of everything, and having a good time doing it! ‘The Ballpit’ is a community and genre that you get lost inside; where you can forget your age and inhibitions. Embrace your wild side!”
“Pushing Veronica is the only place where we can truly be ourselves,” adds Julien. “We act like fucking weirdos, and we accept each other. We’re family. We get into all kinds of shenanigans and great adventures creating our art!”
This philosophy united the four members. Proud “nerdy misfit kids,” Oli met Brady in P.E. class. Neither wanted to participate, so they chopped it up about punk rock music on the sidelines. Brady introduced Oli to his “buddy since preschool” Julien, and the trio ended up rocking Brady’s Bar Mitzvah in 2016. Brady quickly called his go-to bassist and friend Noah to fill out the rhythm section. With all of the pieces in place, Pushing Veronica came to life.
At the same time, they distinguished themselves from their peers.
“Walking through my high school, I see hundreds of kids who have no purpose or clue what they’re going to do when they’re out of school,” sighs Oli. “All of them are tied up in drama and drugs. We’re motivated to do something positive together.”
As they performed countless gigs around the Los Angeles area and developed a diehard fan base, they opened up for everyone from Unwritten Law and The Ataris to Fuel. A sold-out gig supporting Gemini Syndrome at the Whisky A Go-Go led to a production partnership with drummer and producer Brian Steele Medina in late 2017. Medina invited the band to his Las Vegas studio to record their forthcoming 2019 LP.
“Brian inspires us to hone in our sound” says Noah. “He encourages us to be as clever and eccentric as possible. He’s raised the bar on everything we create.” Julien adds, “When others have tried to dial us back or water us down, Brian encourages us to turn our personalities and authenticity up to 11!”
Introducing this next phase, the boys cooked up the single “Dead Girl.” Accompanied by a macabre and hilarious video shot by the legendary Dean Karr [Marilyn Manson, Deftones], the tune soundtracks a graveyard tryst with crunchy guitars and tongue-in-cheek lyrics — likening high school hookup culture to necrophilia.
“It’s like nobody wants to be burdened with a relationship or any form of love,” Julien explains. “Everybody just wants to chew people up and spit them out like emotionless zombies. It’s bullshit. We couldn’t help but stab that idea right in the heart. That’s why she’s dead. She represents what happens when we simply use others for their bodies and stop valuing real relationships and connections with each other.”“It’s necrophilia with meaning,” laughs Brady.
Underneath this morbid humor, Pushing Veronica conceals an empowering message.
“Like in ‘Dead Girl,’ Veronica is the embodiment of everything we observe and question in society” Oli elaborates. “We poke holes in the ideas that are shoved down our throats by the world around us, and we push our commentary to highlight the absurdity of modern values.”
So, jump in the Ballpit with Pushing Veronica — you just might have the time of your life. “Pushing Veronica is all our lives,” Noah exclaims. “I can’t wait to see what the future holds.” Brady leaves off, “Pushing Veronica is our way to escape everything.”
“This is all about being your authentic self,” the guys agree. “Experiencing Pushing Veronica is like immersing yourself in ‘The Ballpit.’ We welcome you into our revolution!”
The revolution starts with them.