IN TUNE: Some sweet things have happened while Jay and Sean Sproviero, the teenaged founding brothers of Doomsday Diaries, were making other plans. One of them is opening this Friday for Zebra at bergenPAC in Englewood.
“Over the last few years, we’ve been lucky enough to meet, and sometimes perform with, some incredible musicians, like Steven Wilson, John Wetton, Leslie West and Adam Holzman,” Sean Sproviero ( above, left ) told CLIFFVIEW PILOT , “and now it’s Randy, Felix and Guy from Zebra.”
Some would say the luck of the Hasbrouck Heights twins is exactly what happens when you work as hard as they have and are committed to the music instead of trying to be rock stars.
The last time they played bergenPAC, while attending School of Rock, legendary singer/guitarist Leslie West had to nudge each of the boys forward during a jam on “Mississippi Queen.”
Although the full band played the 2011 Bamboozle festival at MetLife Stadium, Friday’s gig will most likely be before Doomsday Diaries’ largest audience ever. It helps that Zebra – a Long Island power trio popular around here in the days of White Tiger, Twisted Sister and the Good Rats — is headlining its first New Jersey venue in eight years.
It also comes at an extremely positive turn in the band’s history: Handling lead vocals will be Ella Hester, a multi-instrumentalist from New York City’s School of Rock who replaces the departed Jessica Kenny — with a singing range and musical know-how that is both broader and much deeper.
The twins were clearly amped as they launched into their final warmup for the bergenPAC show in their home studio last night, still thrilled by the response from a weekend gig at Mexicali Live in Teaneck – Ella’s first with the group.
Hear for yourself:
“I couldn’t be more excited by the new music that Sean and I have been writing together,” said Jay Sproviero.
The brothers, also known as J Von Doom and The Evil Twin, have lately been referring to themselves as the “precocious grandchildren of the Seventies.”
“I can’t and don’t want to label it as any particular genre,” Jay told CLIFFVIEW PILOT , “but it really isn’t metal, and it’s definitely not pop/punk or anything like that. I just want to take our music someplace other current bands aren’t going, while at the same time stay true to my progressive rock roots.”
Both boys are so true to their convictions that they’re postponing the original June 21 release of their first full-length CD so that they can re-record it with Ella.
An even better Doomsday dawns, given that the twins haven’t yet had time yet to integrate Ella’s other talents on bass, cello, guitar and keyboards. She’s clearly a great fit for their atmospheric brand of trippy yet tight “progidelic.”
Inspired by Radiohead, Porcupine Tree and others, the Sproviero twins created Doomsday Diaries 4 years ago. Jason plays guitar, Sean bass, and both sing. Although they’re in their late teens, the guys’ musical sensibilities stretch back nearly a half-century. Sweeping current music with a broad brush, they aim to smash the idea that musical originality no longer exists.
And y’know what? It’s working.
“I’m not sure if it’s the music that we’re writing, or because we, as twins, leave an impression on people,” Sean said, “but it just seems that doors keep opening up for us. We’ve certainly been blessed – someone up there is definitely watching over us.”
WHO: Doomsday Diaries (opening for Zebra)
Bergen Performing Arts Center, 30 N. Van Brunt St., Englewood
(201) 227-1030 or bergenpac.org
WHEN: 8 p.m. Friday
HOW MUCH: $29 to $99
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