Bands To Look Out For: The Merks

Wow. If you’re looking for a new band to follow, learn all the lyrics to their songs, or just become a fan of, The Merks should be the first name on your list. If Brandon Urie, The Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes had a baby it would be The Merks.

University of Connecticut students, Conor Philips and Nick Claps formed the band together and brought in Mason Gadd, Dan Theriault, and Julian Sherwood for their official start in 2012. These East Hampton, Conn. natives bring soul, grit, and integrity to each one of their songs. Paying homage to the greats like, Frank Sinatra, Lou Reed, and the Growlers. Each single stimulates every fiber of my being within seconds of hitting play. The combination of the smooth guitar with Philips’ raspy voice and the creativity on the drums takes you on a euphoric trip. The power in Philips’ voice is reason enough to give the band a listen. The Merks are extremely consistent with their sound. Each track sounds a little bit like the previous one, making it easy to listen to get truly lost in their sound.

The band’s latest EP, Newport, is a three-song line up. Each song tells a story of taking chances, not giving up, and being true to yourself. Newport, the title of the EP, is an example of Philips’ range. He belts out lyrics with so much power that the veins in his neck probably being to pop through. The guitar solo by Gadd is worth a round of applause as well. It’s no wonder this is the title of their EP.

After the Vall is a slower track with as much romantic energy as a Fifty Shades of Grey scene. If you’re looking for a song that speaks to your heart, and makes you think about your significant other, After the Vall is the song for you.

My favorite song on the EP, Project Control, is my new anthem. I’ve been listening to it non-stop since the band released it 2 days ago on their SoundCloud account (link at the bottom). With lyrics like, “never trust a man they take all they can” and “first you’re hated and then you’re imitated and never emulated” show the true talent this band has. Not to mention the full minute of pure instrumentals. It makes me think Project Control has a future spot on a Guitar Hero playlist among some of the greatest alternative-rock bands.

Each lyric is meaningful, perfectly in place, and thought-out. These guys have a knack for songwriting and putting together pieces that really works. Not only is their new stuff right on the money, but their older hits are not to be brushed to the side. Like I said before, these guys are consistent. Their older songs like Pitch Black and Now Now Honey, are in my top 5. Listening to the band’s progression and development is one of the best things about their SoundCloud page.  The Merks deserve to make it big and my prediction is that some day they will. The Strokes recorded a 3 song EP and had their big break. Newport is The Merks’ 3-song big break. The Merks will be performing next in East Hampton, Conn on July 8th at the Old Home Days fair, admission is free!

For more information about the Merks check out their Facebook page: To get a taste of their music visit their SoundCloud page: And for tour dates and bookings head to their website:

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