TRY: #2, #1 & #4

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VHS Collection is a rock band from New York City that has gained a reputation for high energy live performances and a unique blend of rock, electronic, and disco influences.  

VHS Collection’s songs have been streamed over 10 million times on Spotify and the band has seen festival performances at Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, and Okeechobee in the last year. The band has released two EP’s to date and will release its first full length record this summer.

“Lean” the single off the band’s first EP hit #8 on the Spotify Viral Charts last January.  “Waiting on the Summer” the single off of the band’s 2 nd EP Stereo Hype hit #14 on the Spotify Viral Charts.

VHS Collection got their start in the winter of 2014 but the three members, James Bohannon, Conor Cook, and Nils Vanderlip have been playing music in one form or another together since they were kids. Conor and James grew up across the street from each other in NYC and attended the same grade school where they began jamming on acoustic guitars; Nils and James met in high school, where they started their first band together and recorded an album.

Years later, with all three members back in NYC, VHS pulled together a collection of electronic leaning rock-influenced bedroom recordings and posted them on Soundcloud. Encouraged by the volume of hits the tracks received, VHS began performing a live set at friends’ parties and around NYC’s small clubs. 2015 saw multiple sold out nights for VHS at the Lower East Side’s indie-rock launching pad, the Mercury Lounge.

2016 saw the band’s first major festival performances at Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits, in addition to sold out club dates on both coasts. The band supported Bloc Party, Powers, and Savoir Adore at a number of dates this summer.

“We were playing a support slot at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn in May 2015 and we didn’t think much of it because the room was half empty at best. The next week we got an email from someone from the C3 team who books Lolla. They said they caught our set and wanted to put on festivals. We were absolutely floored. That was the moment when we realized VHS could make it.”

- Conor Cook, VHS Collection

VHS has created a writing process which is unique and serves them well. It starts primarily with each member individually writing and producing dozens of bits and pieces of songs on their laptops. The band spends months working on these initial song ideas virtually, sending each other files and collaborating via Dropbox. Every few months, the band heads to a cabin in upstate New York where they lock themselves in for 7 days at a time to complete the songs during intense writing sessions. During these sessions, the three members collaborate on every element of the song, with each member playing various instruments on the tracks. The band then weeds out the best of these home produced tracks to bring into the studio.  For their upcoming record, VHS is working with producer Chris Zane who has also produced albums for Passion Pit, St. Lucia, and Friendly Fires.

“After over two years of writing, recording, and performing as VHS Collection, we feel ready for our first full-length record. While music today is all about the single, there is something magical about a full-length that you can’t capture with by just releasing singles. We each have a ton of musical and personal influences and we hope those can all show up on this record.” 

- Conor Cook, VHS Collection

“We’re excited to put out a bigger range of songs. It's often the non-singles that generate a particular connection with someone. It was like that for me."

- James Bohannon, VHS Collection

“Wide Awake” is the first single off VHS Collection’s first full-length record. VHS describes the track as “Dark Disco Rock” and says that the track signals a refined direction for the band in its energy, lyrical themes, and sound choices. Many of the signature themes and sounds from previous releases show up here including: New York City, desperation, arpeggiated synths and dancable basslines. But this track goes deeper with a massive guitar hook, pumped up energy, and even darker lyrical themes than before.

“Wide Awake” is a party anthem, laced with dark undertones. It is a tragic love story, about the madness, obsession, anxiety, and fear that can come with a relationship and the dichotomy between being trapped and being set free by being with someone else. “Wide Awake” tells the story of a man who moves to the city and feels lost. His life is saved by a girl he falls in love with, but then that love turns to a mad obsession which keeps him up all night and eventually destroys his sanity.”

- Conor Cook, VHS Collection

"Wide Awake does it all for us. It screams, whispers, yelps, shreds and breaks out the funk. Its both intimate and chaotic. The theme is one we have danced around a lot in our earlier music, madness and separation both dark and celebratory. This tune is a signature blend of all VHS elements. Big guitar. Big synths. Beeping arpeggiators and dramatic characterized vocals. It feels very much our own, but also has a few nods to some of our favorite artists.”

- James Bohannon, VHS Collection