Samsara is an alternative rock band who draw influences from grunge, blues, funk, and metal. Comprised of local New Yorkers from Queens and Long Island the band is made up of Dylan Trif (Lead Vocals), Charlie LoMonaco (Guitar and Background Vocals), John Devito (Bass), Ben Bustamante (Drums and Background Vocals), Brendan Sandhovel (Bass, Rhythm Guitar). Charlie, Ben, and John began playing music together at an early age through a local music school. Years later they connected with Dylan and Brendan and formed what is now Samsara. The band who write their own music, perform at clubs and music venues on the Long Island and New York City music scene, also play venues in the tri-state area. Currently working on their EP, Samsara have dropped their single, entitled “Filthy Habit”.
The true, dark, gritty essence of the band can be found in this track. This is when they sound like a solid force to be reckoned with. Overall, the sound is thick, fleshy, psychedelically twisted, and at times, even ominous. Dylan Trif gives his all in every verse and chorus, delivering an unforgettably scathing, visceral vocal performance sounding like a tortured soul: “I love you. Can’t have you. I want my (filthy habit). I feel like. I’m drowning. I need my (filthy habit).”
Charlie LoMonaco and Brendan Sandhovel provide a plethora of dirty, distorted guitar-work, creating an irresistible atmosphere which not only satisfies the ear, but feeds the soul, yielding nothing less than a musical elixir. Ben Bustamante perfects the sound with his intuitive drumming, knowing when to hold back and when to rip into it.
The guitars and bass are fully immersed in the mood and feel of the music. The playing is a vital part of the extraordinary impact “Filthy Habit” has upon the listener. It goes without saying that the track is saturated with highlights, from vocals to instrumentation.
Since the virtual end of the Grunge scene, they just don’t seem to make rock music this raw and impacting anymore. While the musicianship is creatively crisp and morbidly vital, it is the singer Dylan Trif who ultimately gives the extreme intimacy, vulnerability and emotional pathos to the song.
All of which allows his powerful, charismatic presence to really take over. As young as they are, Samsara is a band that is musically heavier and overall more challenging than their genre contemporaries.
The group has a strong heavy metal pedigree somewhere in their genes, which shines through the methodical and moody tune, as it employs masterful sonic expressions and a steady drive. The body of “Filthy Habit” uses timing for maximum effect, even if the song never accelerates too far from its slow-burn and deliberate pace.
The single is a fantastic hybrid of alternative rock, grunge and metal, and possesses a raucous and harrowing sound. It’s almost 2020, and the music world is in the midst of an electronic domination, with DJ’s and Producers playing sold out shows across the countries of the world and blasting through the speakers of a younger generation of kids and adults.
If young bands like Samsara can resist and prosper in a world almost hostile towards guitar-driven music, then rock still has a damn good chance of crushing its detractors.