January 22, 2019

The Sigmund Frauds’ individuality helps them succeed

The muffled sound of rock music carries out of a small, yellow home. Five unique personalities stand in a room where equipment lines the walls and overflows into the center. Inside, the Sigmund Frauds rehearse for their upcoming Ho Ho Show with 105.7 the Point.

Webster University students Natalie Auer, Tino Covelli, Peter Flynn and Scott Leeker, along with past student George Koulouriotis, make up the band called the Sigmund Frauds. They describe themselves as post-punk new wave or ambient shoegaze garage rock.

“Each place we play sounds different just because of the room and stuff, but I feel like if you were just walking along the sidewalk you could tell, no matter what place it was, like, ‘that’s the Frauds,’” Covelli said.

As students, they have different academic interests despite their shared interest in music. None of them are studying psychology, even though their band name is reminiscent of a famous psychologist. Leeker and Flynn are majoring in audio production. Auer is studying finance and Covelli has chosen communications. Koulouriotis used to study photography at Webster. He hopes to return to major in film or audio production, but plans on waiting until he knows what he wants to study.

Majors are not the only way these band mates differ. They take inspiration from many different artists and genres.

“I would say that we all kind of fall along a spectrum and then that spectrum is just called rock music,” Leeker said.

The members’ inspirations show through in the music they make. Different influences are sometimes combined in the same song. Koulouriotis said the lack of one strict genre attracts fans of different types of music to the Sigmund Frauds.

Austin Strifler has been a fan since late 2015 and listens to mostly indie and alternative music. He is drawn to emotional music, both happy and sad. Strifler enjoys the Sigmund Frauds’ music because of the emotional aspects, despite the different inspirations present in their music.

“They definitely diversify their sound… Their song ‘Rose’s Complications’ is kind of like a slow, just kind of somber one, at least for most of the song,” Strifler said. “Whereas some of their other songs are just in your face and energetic and kind of crazy… It’s music that makes you feel which I think is, for me, the best kind of music.”

Vincent Russo listens to punk music and became a fan of the Sigmund Frauds in late 2017. He believes the band’s label of post-punk is accurate, but thinks the Sigmund Frauds have a different sound from most traditional punk bands. This uniqueness attracts Russo to their music.

“Something Scott said to me was that genre is a social construct and I definitely agree with that,” Russo said. “They definitely fit the punk mold, but they’re so different from so many punk bands that I listen to that it’s hard to nail it down really hard. I think that’s a good thing too though.”

Strifler and Russo can see many influences in the band’s music. One band that both men named was Cage the Elephant, but their reasoning was different. Russo sees the inspiration in the Sigmund Frauds’ music, but Strifler sees it in their presence on stage.

The Sigmund Frauds’ unique music ranges from slower spoken word to fast paced rock. Different ideas and inspirations may lead to brief conflicts as to how to compose a song, but everyone ultimately enjoys what they create.

“We come up with something that is different than what I think any of us had any intention of making when we went into it but it’s something that we all unanimously really like,” Koulouriotis said.

The band values creating music they enjoy. Every piece is true to the Sigmund Frauds, from the lyrics to the instrumentals.

“I think that what sets us apart is that regardless of how good of a set we’re going to play compared to the other bands or compared to whatever, we’re always going to put forth something that’s authentic and that we believe in and that’s all that really matters,” Leeker said.

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