StepkidPosted by Suzi Pratt
To See Rating 7/10
Just Curious Rating 5.5/10
Benjamin Tyler - drums, vocals, mixing…EVERYTHING!
Stepkid is a one-man show, and by that, I don’t mean a guy with a microphone and an acoustic guitar or a DJ. Okay, maybe Stepkid is like a DJ in the sense that he certainly makes beats and dances like a one. But in addition to mixing his own sound clips and electronic beats, he does his own drumming and vocals and manages to put together a song that sounds like it has at least two other dedicated musicians in it. I immediately likened Stepkid’s sound to that of the band Holy F**k–a mix of electronica and experimental. As a plus, Stepkid adds in versatile vocals that can be smooth to match the beat of an ambient song, or almost screamo-like for an electro-rock song.
Stepkid was the first of three musical acts that played at the Josephine in Ballard for a crowd of not more than twenty folks, all of whom seemed to be either members or friends of the other bands playing that evening. The combination of the crowd and the venue, which featured as odd assortment of couches and an unmarked entrance, made me feel like I was hanging out in a garage waiting for my teenage brother’s band to play their first gig. The biggest annoyance for me was the extreme lack of stage lighting. The only light onstage for Stepkid was a dim light bulb that made it hard to see him and follow his constant movements; the artist was even stumbling around as he searched for his equipment. I think Stepkid’s stage presence during this performance was laidback and at times a bit sloppy, but I also think that these qualities went in hand with the informal venue he was playing in. At the same time, Stepkid seemed awkward as he transitioned between songs, and maybe he could use some bandmates to lighten his load and improve on his stage presence, but I also think that part of his appeal is the fact that he CAN do everything all by himself. Either way, this kid could use more experience playing at mainstream sites for larger audiences before he’s ready to successfully headline a major show.
There are a couple of recorded albums by Stepkid and he is currently in the midst of recording a new one now. If you want to know more about Stepkid, don’t try to Wikipedia him, because there’s not a whole lot of media on him yet, but SSG’s got you covered with the Internet’s very first interview with Stepkid, and a few clips from his live performance. Again, this kid’s still growing up, but do give his music a sampling and try to catch him live the next time he’s in town!