Mighty Brother
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Mighty Brother

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Indie




"Listen to Mighty Brother's "Think It Wise""

Bloomington's Mighty Brother takes over the Back Door tomorrow with a single release party — but we've got the goods before the show. "Think It Wise" is the the band's first single from full-length Jettison. Reprise., which drops this winter. Dietrich Jon and The Brands will open tomorrow, and the Mighty Brother's performance will be followed by a dance party (which the Back Door is ace at throwing). Mighty Brother has had a packed year (read more about that in their bio below), putting together a live album, a comedy EP, an IndieGoGo campaign and this really ridiculously catchy video about owning a band van.

So catchy, right? Anyway, on to the single (which you can hear tomorrow with brass and strings!). - NUVO.com

"#FridayFeature | Mighty Brother | BTN, IN, USA"

Mighty Brother is a songwriting duo honoring the folk tradition through of lyrical storytelling while embracing the eclectic instrumentation of the indie folk genre. “Like if you heard Fleet Foxes through the walls at the Neutral Milk Hotel and mistook it for The Avett Brothers.”

Through elaborate collaboration, songwriters Jake Ryan and Nick Huster bring a certain harmony to the musical talents of the Bloomington community, channeling their own brand of youthful enthusiasm to explore the humbling concepts of growth and loss, love and letting go, longing and adventure set to an ethereal winter landscape. Forming in the cold Midwest winter of 2014, Mighty Brother set to work composing their first full-length record, Jettison. Reprise. After jamming through the spring, they had amassed their dream team, a group of musicians and arrangers, artists and engineers excited to bring their specific skills to the record. In its entirety, Jettison. Reprise. features 19 individuals, complete with a string quartet and a brass quintet, all Bloomington residents. Mixing engineer, Eric Day, of Sleepwalk Recording, shows his experience and skillful ear on the record, while Kate Siefker, a Paul Mahern protégé, adds the polishing touches with careful and meticulous mastering. Together they were able to hone the diverse timbres present on Jettison. Reprise., set to release December 2015.

Meanwhile, Mighty Brother pushed through the summer of 2015 to produce 9 YouTube videos, a 9-track Live Album, a 3-track Comedy EP, and 1 music video on the joys of owning a band van, mobilizing 4 video production teams, 3 sound engineers, and 22 friends. They also led a successful crowd-funding campaign at the end of July, featuring a track on WFHB’s Sweetheart of the Radio show and raising over $1000 for production costs.

Jetison.Reprise. is a look at life as a process, a journey to maturity with a thoughtful glance over the shoulder. Mighty Brother perfects this cinematic feeling in their single “Think It Wise” with shimmering images of childhood adventure and the looming burden of adulthood.

* Mighty Brother will release their single at their event in Bloomington, IN on September 4th, 2015 at The Back Door. Everyone in attendance will receive a CD with the single and an exclusive sticker for free.


J: What is the story behind the song you submitted?

MB: “Think It Wise” was merely a song from my back pages when I demoed it with Nick. We were shaping our debut record one snowy afternoon, sitting around the piano with too many cups of coffee. The co-writing of this song was a big step for me, as I’d rarely collaborated lyrically with anyone up to this point. But I was ready to loose the reigns on this one and see what Nick and I could do together.

The verses were mostly written, but I’d lost the initial flare that had birthed it and felt the stanzas were only vaguely related. With Nick and the sundrenched world looking on, we found the common themes of youthful curiosity and adventure riddled with tones of grown-up idealisms. “Lesson learned, just color in the lines” kinda stuff. From there Nick easily shaped the chorus from images of rabbits and nature and winter. Honestly, the rabbit is a reoccurring character in our Mighty Brother dichotomy, so that part felt very genuine and fitting.

Although, I have to say, the kicker to me is how Fleet Foxes-inspired this track. And Nick enabling my shout out to them in the last chorus line like some starry-eyed fan boy! “Keep your footing, fleet as foxes go!” How preposterous!

J: Why do you write music?

MB: For us, music and songwriting are a big part of our lives, as important as eating or maybe laughing with your friends. And, much like life, it is a process. It is ever baffling! How apt songwriting is to capture the process of life, while also being a process in and of itself!

I know Nick and I write from similar places, each of us projecting through our music, from deeper parts of ourselves. Music is very much a vehicle of exploration. It has the ability to bring warring thoughts to a calm, at least long enough to capture their dissonant voices, the ability to search the depths of desire, at least long enough to undermine that higher function of self-conservation. Music, for lack of a better descriptor, tames the process of thought for but a moment, allowing you to explore its intricacies.

I can’t speak as to all of Nick’s feelings on the matter, but for me, songwriting has been an invaluable tool for self-analysis. I have only recently decided that the perspectives gleaned therein are worth something and should be shared. If nothing else, I hope to inspire others through my songwriting to write songs of their own and come to know themselves a little better, as I have. If I could give anyone anything, it would be that encouragement.

J: If you could open a set for anyone, who would it be?

MB: At this point in our career, Busman’s Holiday in Bloomington, Indiana would be the bee’s knees! But in the greater vision, in the “the universe is ours” mentality, I think it would be awesome to open for Neutral Milk Hotel. Jeff Mangum is one of our idols and a huge influence behind the instrumentation on the album.

J: Why is independent music important to you?

MB: Independent music is an avenue to share what mainstream music won’t. With the advent of the digital age, it is increasingly difficult to scratch any living out of it, but I find comfort in the fact that you could potentially reach everyone anywhere anytime. That wasn’t true a decade ago. And while the big labels scramble to adapt a more current business model, we have the ability, although not without a ton of elbow grease, to find our own way.

A marketing professor once gave me some great advice about the growing trend with indie music and the throttling grip of the dinosaur record conglomerates. I don’t remember the exact words, but basically, we (independent musicians) are the content creators. No matter how the business changes, we are the source from which all content flows. And that’s something that the music business as a conduit will always desire. It’s the most favorable end of the process to be on! At least that’s what I took it to mean. :3

Booking Contact: mightybrotherband(at)gmail(dot)com - JesseLacy.com

"Mighty Brother's new vid comes out tomorrow — but you can see it here first"

Three cheers for this gorgeously filmed new vid from Bloomington's Mighty Brother. They stopped in to the Hi-Fi last night, but if you missed them there, catch up right this second — or see them at The Back Door in Bloomington tonight.

Read up on Mighty Brother's recording process for jettison. reprise. here. (And listen below.) - Nuvo.com

"Artists in their own words: Mighty Brother, Nick Huster and Jake Ryan"

Who: Nick Hüster and Jake Ryan

What: Musicians

Where: Lower 9th

Artist’s Chosen Location for Interview: St. Coffee (2709 St. Claude Ave.): They pulled up in a very infamous van (see article below)

Q: What do you feel like gets you in places that you aren’t necessarily invited to?

NH: We were thinking about doing a couple’s interview where we answer for each other, so for Jake…I would say that thing is rope.

JR: I like that.

NH: Jake is a climber and has gone many places that you’re either not allowed to go or would not be able to go without rope.

JR: A little urban climbing. I’ve gotten into most buildings in Bloomington, Indiana where we’re from, including the tallest building. It’s not that big of a building – the town itself is pretty small – but it’s the tallest one there. It requires at least two people and a rope. I have a few friends that are climbers, so we hop some fences, get to the top of the building, throw the rope down, and we go from there.

What would you choose for Nick, then?

JR: Charisma. The kind of kick-the-doors-open-and-rub-my-belly kind of charisma. It’s not necessarily that he’s ever done that, but it feels like he could.

NH: I’ll take that.

Q: What’s a song you’ve joked about recording but haven’t yet?

JR: It’s funny because we do a lot of comedy, and a lot of the songs we joke about we do end up writing.

NH: I’ll talk about one. We went hiking in Colorado last October and a couple of our friends came. We drove with a ukulele the whole way out there, and we stopped in Kansas for the night. It was some random place, and my friend kept referring to it as the Town of Ross. He used this very archaic language about it, and we came up with an entire story about the Duke of Ross. It’s one of our road trip songs that never becomes anything, but it’s 70% completed and has an entire storyline. It’s a song about an evil duke that moves to Kansas and he’s at war with the Boulderians in Colorado. He harvests all the grain and refuses to give it to the people.

JR: Although, I would love to do a play-style, operatic version of this song. Maybe one day.

Q: What’s something you’d like to know how to fix?

JR: I’d really like to make my bike run better. I can do minor things, but usually I know just enough to make the bike run worse.

NH: Pretty much anything electrical. I’d love to know how to work with wiring since we’re dealing with broken instruments right now. Knowing how to fix amps, cables, and instruments would be great. I know it’s soldering, wiring, and a lot of youtube, but this is all stuff that we don’t want to break, so it’s risky learning it.

JR: Cable fixing would be awesome. One of our friends is great at fixing amps and stuff, and we were playing a show just a bit ago, and he fixed our cables right then and there. He’d make a great roadie.

Also, I’d like to fix the bipartisan system. Right now you have the Independent represented, but there really needs to be more.

NH: Something more meta or abstract for me would be the social perception of mental disorders. I have a bit of an issue with the way that we medicate our youth and people in general. People who are moody are led to believe that they must define themselves as depressed or maniac or have some sort of disorder. I don’t ever see that as a disorder. I see that as how the person is.

The whole discussion around this issue is very much Big Pharma telling us there is something wrong so they can sell us a product. I’m not a big fan of that.

Q: What other historical duo would you say you two are similar to?

JR: I really love the Avettt Brothers. They both take the lead on singing and they take harmonies at the same time, and Nick and I do that as well. Plus, both of them must have been the songwriters for the band because they seem to have different styles of songs co-written. Nick and I write together, work on harmonies, and sing together.

NH: Yeah, I started singing a few years ago, and I never attempted harmonies before. I had been in bands before where they wanted to do harmonies, and I was always that guy who was like, ‘No. I’m tone deaf. I’m the drummer, I don’t harmonize.’ Then Jake and I started writing together, and the harmonies came from there.

JR: I’ve always sung with other people. When I was a kid, my family used to sing harmonies together all the time. My dad and I would sing the Eagles and he’s into old country, so there are always harmonies to be had there. We did that when I was young, and I didn’t realize that it was probably really good training.

NH: Yeah, so when Jake and I started playing together we were playing my songs and we wanted to play his songs to keep the harmony. I took a vocal class my senior year, and I think I sang an operatic version of ‘Sound of Silence,’ but that class was really more about confidence building. What Jake and I do is different.

There’s a song on our album called “Yours and Mine,” and that’s the first song I picked up harmonies on. And this other song on our album, “Think is Wise,” was the most difficult for me. We started working on those harmonies in April, and it probably wasn’t until much later that we were ready to perform that.

JR: It’s solid as hell now. It also makes me think about harmonies more than I usually would—thinking about when I’m switching to the third and the fifth, which I wouldn’t always think about when singing by myself.

NH: Yeah, now I don’t even have to think about it. The muscle memory is there.

Q: What is it about coffee shops?

JR: The aroma? Fresh ground beans maybe? I’m also a super caffeine junkie. When I was a kid my dad always made coffee in a little percolator, and I loved the smell. I wanted to like coffee for so long, and it was always disgusting. Now I’m all in.

NH: I like that it’s usually an artistic community. Like in this place, you look around and there’s local art on the wall, the vibe is really awesome, and there’s always musicians around coffee shops for whatever reason.

JR: We’ve always done a lot of our work in coffee shops too.

NH: You can always talk to the barista, and they seem to know people and what is going on. There’s a community that’s built around them.

JR: We actually used coffee shops to do our Push the Van Campaign. We went to Craigslist in all different cities, and we’d post an ad for a van that was super cheap. We’d post the video with it.

NH: And we’d ask $500 obo for van.

JR: Our friends went to coffee shops to use the wifi and would write back about it.

NH: We jumped like 200 views that day when they all got in on it.

JR: Then we got flagged and taken down. Some guy knew it was bogus.

NH: And we really like that community vibe, for our band and everything. We started with just the energy of us two, and what we want to do is bring in a lot of artists and friends. Our album came out two weeks ago, so we’re ready to start releasing more music, like a 4 song EP. We’re having four friends draw pictures for each song, and we’re releasing that. We want that kind of collaboration. It’s where we feel the most contented.

Nick Hüster and Jake Ryan’s band, Mighty Brother, will be playing on May 6, when they will be hosting the Seattle Singer-Songwriter Katie Kuffel for a two show run. They will be playing at Dragon’s Den (early show) & Feedback (acoustic intimate late show). On May 11, you can also check them out at Checkpoint Charlie’s (501 Esplanade). To hear more about Mighty Brother and their upcoming shows, you can head to their website, Instagram, Facebook and Tumblr. - NolaVie

"Mighty Brother, “The Vibe” (Independent)"

Taking inspirational cues from the Crescent City, Mighty Brother’s five-song five-piece line-up EP The Vibe showcases the band’s musical adaptability, songwriting skills and grasp of putting it all together. The recording sets out to capture musically some of our city’s unique charms, incorporating a next-generation melding of funk, rock and Avett-Americana to paint the scenes. The album starts with the airy “Menagerie”—a subtle song with a picked arpeggios intro, slowly adorned with simple lyrics. A touch of a Latin beat works its way in and out of the rhythm on the sound of claves. In the middle, you hear some nice upbeat vocal call and response that drives the song, top-down, over the halfway point. From there we drift out into repeated phrases over saxophone, chimes and charm. Felt like a good wake-up in the French Quarter.

The title track, “The Vibe,” finds the sweet spot exploring tasty vocal harmonies and a stand-up beat. It has all the good flavors of New Americana, Beatles and even Buddy Holly earnestness to it. This song, carried by the shuffling, swinging drums, is the heartbeat of the album—and an energizing tune.

The five songs that make up The Vibe take us on a tour of a young band’s distillation of New Orleans. Mighty Brother is an upbeat, refreshing band that delivers a embraceable album. I bet these dudes would be great live. - Offbeat

"“Holy Sh*T, This Is Heavy”: Mighty Brother’s New Video Demands Critical Thought"

“Menagerie” opens with a young girl watching a projection of ocean life accompanied by the soft strumming of a guitar. Lyrics appear on–screen as they are sung. For the first 30 seconds, it is serene and meditative, almost dreamlike. Then another voice emerges, deeper and more menacing. Throughout the song, these dueling voices coalesce to form a dissonance between youth and authority in a conflict that tweaks the child’s imagination.

Made possible by the Threadhead Cultural Foundation, “Menagerie” comes from The Vibe, an EP released by New Orleans-based indie rock band, Mighty Brother. In an exclusive interview and premiere with OffBeat.com, songwriters and vocalists Nick Huster and Jake Ryan discussed the creative process behind the song and addressed some existential questions raised in the video, which is directed by David Bear.

The projection watched by the young girl, Austyn, features clips of marine life, street violence, spaceships, lions, wildfires and skydivers to present varied perspectives of the natural and the manmade, the beautiful and the dark. “We wanted to present the viewer with a shifting balance of images, from unblemished nature scenes and peaceful coexistence to the foreseeable outcome of human conflict and greed,” Huster said. The projection was created by Huster himself, who sourced clips from YouTube creative commons, stock footage and public domain works. It was also his first time editing video. Pretty good, huh?

Austyn’s reactions to the footage were genuine, not rehearsed, making the song’s message even realer. Viewers observe as Austyn’s naivete is stripped by the violent footage on–screen. “The moment she covered her eyes during the first fighting scene, I was like ‘holy shit, this is heavy.’ That moment really encapsulates a theme we were exploring with this video: the impact of violence as it has been normalized in the media,” Ryan said.

To demonstrate the song’s complexity, the band used vocal layering, a technique borne out of their co-writing process. “Nick and I like to harmonize and accent certain lyrics while juxtaposing others using the different timbres of our voices,” Ryan said. “The dueling vocals overlap near the midpoint of the narrative, portraying, for us, how the external voice of society becomes internalized.” For Huster, the song’s structure harkens back to a poem he wrote years before in which the stanzas could be read together or separately to create different stories.

These shifting perspectives are woven throughout. For example, Austyn’s amazement at a majestic lion shifts when the following clip shows the same lion devouring the entrails of its prey. In regards to the overall message, Ryan and Huster likened the video to a zoo, consistent with the definition of a menagerie as “a collection of wild animals kept in captivity for exhibition.” For a child, a zoo is a place of wildlife and wonder. As she ages, it represents humanity’s dangerous power to keep animals in captivity.

“Menagerie” is a work of art that encourages viewers to inhabit the spirit of the young girl, as she experiences the world. When the song concludes, viewers are left with a collection of contrasting images. Through the juxtaposition of these clips, Mighty Brother encourages listeners to think critically about the narratives around us. - Offbeat


The Vibe EP - Released Nov. 7, 2017

Jettison. Reprise. - Released Dec. 17, 2015



Mighty Brother is a New Orleans-based indie rock band with a genre-bending repertoire of upbeat originals ranging from Avett-inspired Americana to Radiohead-esque art rock. Soaring harmonies and striking melodies knit an eclectic sound, guiding the listener through unconventional grooves and adventurous lyricism.

The Vibe EP, Mighty Brother’s sophomore release, is a sonic departure from their Midwestern folk roots, establishing a new 5-piece lineup and a sound as eclectic as New Orleans itself. The EP, funded in part by a generous grant from the Threadhead Cultural Foundation, explores a myriad of genres to tell five stories depicting the culture and vibe of the city. An all-star cast of local musicians and artistic collaborators can be heard on the record.

Following a generous grant from the Threadhead Cultural Foundation, Mighty Brother began tracking in early 2017 at Bear America Records, working with engineers Joe Ceponis (of Quintessential Octopus) and David Hart (of Motel Radio) to craft the sonic pallet that would become The Vibe EP.  Long-term collaborator Eric Day provided mastering, and in its final form, the record features keys by David Polk, slide guitar by Carson Thielen, as well as trumpet and sax cameos by John Culbreth and Nick Ellman, the Naughty Horns of Naughty Professor. Photographer Daniel Grey of United Bakery Records shot the album and individual character artwork.

Band Members