Following are some sweet nothings people have said about Zachary Bernstein's one-man musical act, The Bicycats:
“The Bicycats is an absolutely brilliant outfit. It's real tough to be odd and appeal to those who may not cotton to odd all too well. The Bicycats play pop music with doses of mania and a Young Fresh Fellow sense of unpretentious cool.”
–Frank De Blase, Rochester City Paper
“These melodies are like a new best friend, who is relentlessly trying to get you up off your heartbroken, melancholy ass, and go out for drinks, on a night when you’re hell bent on sulking. His “aw c’mon man I SWEAR we won’t even think about her” tactics eventually win, and you submit. The next thing you know, you’re at the bar with this offbeat guy, and the painful subjects you were purposefully avoiding have come up. Thing is, you’re not mad. This guy is damn funny. It turns out; the searing pain of heartbreak IS kind of absurd in this lighting, and man you needed to get out of that stale old house anyway. Such is the case with ‘i love you for your mind.’ The Bicycats trick you into meeting up during recess, and then serve up intelligent, weighty subjects using form and lyrics that are just silly and random enough to not leave you full of regret for having tackled such lofty tomfoolery. Bernstein gets away with it because clever fun is contagious. Don’t fight it.”
-Beth from 9 Pound Chihuahua (Durham, NC)
"I danced in my seat. I nodded earnestly. I guffawed. I think I even drooled."
-Kelli Rae Powell, colleague
And here are some brief descriptions of each song by the songwriter:
1. "Melody": Written specifically to open this album.
2. "Every Time We Say Goodbye (Not A Cole Porter Song)": One of the problems with being a songwriter these days is that a lot of the good song concepts have already been taken. This song was written as a way to further expound upon what else might happen when people say goodbye.
3. "The Diamond Song": Based on chapter nine of Sylvia Plath's 'The Bell Jar' from the point of view of Esther Greenwood's blind date, Marco.
4. "Very Subtle Moustache": An exercise in brevity.
5. "The Ferris Wheel Was Melting": The story of a small town's reaction to a Ferris wheel that melted, supplemented with a flute solo.
6. "Salad Van": This was also the title of my senior project in college.
7. "Living Situation": Marvelously sung by an old flame, this song comes with a message: there's nothing like having a place to live.
8. "Shark Family Orchestra": My most requested song. They don't always know the title, so they say, "Play the one about having 1,000 kids."
9. "Ordinary Vortex": A keyboard-heavy lament about accidentally getting stuck in another dimension with a social undesirable.
10. "In Love": My first genuine attempt at a sad-sack song without jeopardizing my lyrical or musical standards.
11. "Dance The Night Away": Some people love this song, but other people hate it. I don't know exactly why. Perhaps you would like to have a listen and share your opinion with me (in private)?