Spotlight: The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart Brighten NYC Skyline

Brooklyn band have two 2 albums, several EPs, and lots of colored vinyl singles to collect

By , Columnist

NYC once again factors in heavily with its burgeoning list of bands that are necessary to pay attention to. With one of their increasingly popular bands, The Pains of Being Pure At Heart, the city, once again, scores big.

The four-piece indie band from Brooklyn pulled their interesting - and long - name from a children’s book. But somehow the name fits. Today’s music doesn’t need a carefully groomed image with a perfect name to develop properly and gain a following. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart know this. With two albums to their credit, and two EPs, they have begun to create a big buzz.

Musically, The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart are power-punk/pop at its best. They run through their songs with all the subtleties of a freight train, and yet, the vocals take on a goth-like, dream-pop style that makes for an interesting blend all the way around. Listening carefully, there’s a slight but unmistakable OMD vocal quality to the songs.


The band self-released their eponymously-titled first EP in 2007, which led to the signing and release of their 2009 self-titled debut album. That album had critics and fans salivating for more. With ten fast-paced ‘wall of sound’ tracks like “Contender," the freight-train of “Come Saturday,” a stunning, radio-friendly “A Teenager In Love,” and the perfection of “This Love Is Fucking Right!,” the debut is all good.

Several EPs followed the debut including the 5-track Higher Than the Stars, a mix of new songs and remixes (more if you get it from iTunes). On their early 2011 second album, Belong, the band adopted a more polished approach, no doubt to entice a bigger fan-base. With more radio-friendliness than before, Belong continues in the direction that The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart started with their first great album.

If you love NYC origin music as much as I always have, then The Pains of Being Pure at Heart is one you should listen to. Start with their debut and progress to their sophomore release afterward. They have lots of singles and remixes collectibles as well as colored vinyl 7” 45s to hunt down.

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Matt Rowe began his life with an AM radio, listening to anything that was considered music. Since, he has labored intently to build a collection of music, paring it down, rebuilding, and refining as he sees fit. His decided goal is to keep up with new music by panning for the nuggets among literal mountains…

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