“With frantic yet subdued rhythms and the modal vocals of Lynn Michalopoulos, Bebek creates a new and polished soundscape of electronic psych….. with European experimentation and the American soul in tact." The Dame – Lexington, KY (January, 2006)
2006 has proven to be a landmark year for Bebek. Following their performance during SXSW in Austin, TX the band released their new EP, Open Eyes. This album retains the unique, haunting, atmospheric quality of the band's first CD, Bebek, and infuses it with the energy the band has cultivated as a touring act. Open Eyes is organic electronica, and the next step in the evolution of Bebek’s sound. These six songs present a vibrant vision of dream-pop that has been played on over 200 Triple A and college stations since its release and charted in the spring of 2006 on the CMJ charts. The positive reviews from several national press outlets such as Okay Player, Infuze Magazine, Earcandy Magazine, Smother and Sureshot Magazine as well as international press from Portugal, Sweden and Turkey, demonstrate the impact of the band’s second self-release.
Bebek (which means ‘baby’ in Turkish) started in a bar in Chicago. Nick Michalopoulos meets Lynn in a bar and starts a conversation. Music was something they instantly had in common, and Lynn tells Nick how she’d like to start singing again. Nick is ecstatic, because he’s found his ‘angle,’ and after a month invites Lynn to sing with his band at a gig. Lynn, a lover of Anita O’Day, soul, and Ani Di Franco, says yes, and performs a Led Zeppelin song with them. Soon Nick and Lynn move to Philadelphia and get married.
Nick’s mother dies soon after the inception of Bebek. This serves as a point of departure for much of the material Bebek starts to perform. The lyrics portray deeply personal situations about attachment and loss with a poetic humanity. Lynn’s soaring vocals fit in a Philadelphia scene partially dominated by neo-soul, while the edgy, gurgling electronica of Nick’s music set the band apart from the rest of the Philly indie scene. Bebek makes a name for itself by crossing over to both of these audiences, while maintaining their unique sound. This leads the Philadelphia Weekly to recognize in the band’s infancy that “Philadelphia’s budding Bebek possesses a sneaky infectiousness that hints at a bright future."
Bebek releases its first full-length record, Bebek, at a sold out show at the popular Philadelphia club – The Fire. The sell-out adds to the band’s momentum and soon they become one of Philly’s largest draws, playing big venues like the TLA. Along with these larger venues come headlining gigs at the North Star and World Café Live. Local, national, and European press all agree that the band’s self-produced, eponymous debut demonstrates a musical breadth and distinct compositional creativity. Positive press and excellent record play propel Bebek steadily higher on the national radar. IN all, Bebek’s music has played or is currently playing on 366 college, triple A and satellite stations combined across the country and in Europe.
In addition to its hometown of Philadelphia, the band is now firmly established in New York, Chicago, D.C, Pittsburgh, Winston-Salem & Greensboro, NC and Lexington, KY and has started building audiences in Minneapolis, Columbus, Cincinnati, Ann Arbor, Boston, Nashville, and Louisville, KY. In addition to 2006’s SXSW, Bebek has performed at NEMO (Boston), Summerfest (Milwaukee), Hyperactive Music Festival ( Albuquerque), Midpoint Music Festival ( Cincinnati) and The Lebowski Fest in New York in October ‘05 - an event that is covered in Rolling Stone, Playboy, Spin and Giant. Bebek is currently licensed for MTV shows Made and My Super Sweet Sixteen as well as PBS’ Roadtrip Nation.
While the band’s sound already draws comparisons with other pioneering acts such as Stereolab, Bjork, The Brazilian Girls and Zero 7, Bebek continues to expand their sound. Nick and Lynn’s lyrics still retain the personal nature of the first record, but are more outward looking. The guitar work of Frank Vasile presents new dimensions to the group’s sound. Nick’s synth textures are more tactile while the rhythm section, led by Adam Mizelle and Anthony Matthews, is more relentless. Add to this, Lynn’s deeply intimate and varied vocal approaches and you have the creation of a unique brand of dream pop. Bebek’s new material builds upon the stunning and unique musical vision presented in Open Eyes and has created a singular rock sound that is more defined, focused and energetic.