Rising from NY punks Chumped and Worriers, with a dash of DIY UK alternative in the form of Caves, comes Katie Ellen. Anika Pyle’s love child spans punk, power pop, and indie rock, for the first time to be seen live in Germany.
2014 smash hit Teenage Retirement basically secured Chumped’s place among the big punk acts. It was their first full-length, so critics and fans alike waited with bated breath for what else the band had in store for the future. Alas, they are waiting still: The band has been on an indefinite hiatus since 2015. But there is one other band to soothe the longing. Vocalist/guitarist Anika Pyle and drummer Dan Frelly formed Katie Ellen in the same year, the title going back to Pyle’s great grandmother’s broadcasting name. Instead of purely looking at pop punk, Pyle cites Patsy Cline, Amy Winehouse, and 60’s girl bands as inspiration for her new project. It goes to show: There’s a new edge to the sound that is unfound Chumped songs.
In 2016, a demo EP titled Wild <3 as well as the single TV Dreams were released. They performed those songs supporting Jeff Rosenstock or Cayetana, among others. The band underwent some line-up additions and changes in the same year. Currently, Anthony Tinnirella of STRANGEPRIDE and Lou Hanman of Worriers and Caves are part of the group.
On Cowgirl Blues, the debut full-length released in 2017, Pyle crafted lyrics on indecision, withdrawing into oneself, being a woman and staying independent. The follow-up EP Still Life of 2018 stays true to the motifs touched upon, refining the band’s sound further.
With just one LP under their belt there is still lots of room for experimentation, for surprises. Let’s hope Katie Ellen will stick around for longer than Chumped did; or better yet, revitalize their former project. This March, they are playing a few select shows in Europe. In Hamburg, they are pairing up with Mood Change and Die Wände at Hafenklang. Grevenbrück and Würzburg see them as their main act, and an acoustic show at Donau115 has just been announced for Berlin. Further concert dates can be found on their Bandcamp and Pyle’s Instagram.