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DoNYC Presents

Ki: Theory, I Am Strikes, The U.S. Americans

Events

Aug 10 Thu
Ki: Theory, I Am Strikes, The U.S. Americans8:00 PM | Doors: 7:00 PM
Knitting Factory - BrooklynBrooklyn, NY
All Ages
Tickets $10.00 ADV / $12.00 DOS

I Am Strikes

There's a lot to be said about the steadfast commitment to honesty. However, it's no secret that some thoughts are too heavy to exist outside our own sphere of awareness. Enter I Am Strikes, an emerging indie-alternative artist from Sacramento, CA with a lot to say and very little room for shame or discretion.

"Vapidity makes me want to rip my face off," says I Am Strikes when asked what inspired her to start the project. "The man at the checkout counter asks you how you're doing. Maybe it's the worst day of your life. But you always answer.. 'Good.' 'Fine.' As if invalidating your feelings for a moment ceases their existence. We live in a world of small talk and meaningless interaction." It's a relatable sentiment, to say the least.

So how does I Am Strikes exist in a society devoted to keeping one's hinges in place? "I've committed to fighting that grain tooth and nail. For the sake of my own sanity. For the sake of anybody else who can relate. If I need to say it, I sing it. All honesty. There's absolutely no censorship."

Such is seen in her song titles: "Whatever Makes You Want to Die Less," "Bitches," and "Love is Just a Way to Die," where she cloaks intense messages in powerful melody.

While I Am Strikes neither starts nor ends with cynicism, (despite what some song names may suggest), a sense of honest self-depreciation litters her music: "I may be a loser, but tell me I've won you over" -- the opening lyrics to her peppy piano ballad 'Loser.' "I may be stressed, or maybe I am depressed/but I know I'm moving on to the life you kept me from" -- the chorus lyrics to her anthem 'Out of Breath,' dedicated to "the pill-popping kids" and "the mind-numbing youth" whom she advises to "stop hiding [their] wrists." Suffice it to say, there's a hopeful undertone that contrasts the inherent darkness of her persona and her music.

While it's impossible to ignore her compelling vocal style and content, I Am Strikes is more of a musician than most. At the age of 15, she began teaching herself to play the guitar. "I didn't know anything about it," she says. "My family didn't play. My friends didn't play. I didn't grow up around much music at all. I was kind of just sick of being a teenager and finally gave myself a valid excuse to lock myself in my room." These hours of solitude lead to an undeniable proficiency of her instrument; the guitar seems an extension of her fingers.

Maybe she's a walking contronym, as her name would suggest. Maybe she straddles the line between centered and unstable. Or maybe she's the embodiment of a generation tired of shaming pain and stigmatizing madness. It's no secret that I Am Strikes is far from the tail-end of her career.

So what exactly happened to I Am Strikes to elicit such an explosive and creative response? "It's simple. I got my heart broken. Badly. Heavily. And it changed my perspective on everything."

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