by Chandler Christopher

Been Stellar is a five-piece indie, goth-rock band based in New York City. Currently made up of members Sam Slocum (vocals), Skyler Knapp (guitar), Laila Wayans (drums), Nando Dale (guitar), and Nico Brunstein (bass), the band was originally formed in high school by best friends Sam and Skyler. The two started the band growing up in Michigan, songwriting melodic tunes inspired by bands like The Strokes and Interpol. The duo eventually continued their life journey together, attending New York University in 2017 with plans to expand Been Stellar into something the two had dreamily envisioned. As fate would have it, three lucky NYU attendees, Laila, Nando, and Nico, would soon find themselves passionately collaborating through extensive Been Stellar sessions from their Brooklyn basement studio, creating a quintessential link between the five of them. 

“When we think about the history of the band, you know, in high school it was just me and Sky. It wasn’t really what we envisioned for the full potential of Been Stellar, so now it feels like what it is actually supposed to be– everyone collaborating together and meshing different ideas.” – Sam Slocum

Currently on the road in the West Coast for their first official tour, Been Stellar is set for two upcoming Austin, Texas dates– August 5th: Hotel Vegas and August 7th: 21st Street Co-op. While the band’s present catalog is categorized by rowdy, euphonious tracks, they say that their upcoming project is going to be entirely different. The majority of songs being played on this tour are unreleased tracks, described by lead singer Sam as, “Equally as melodic and riffy but much more subtly– dressed up with loud, complex sounds and instrumentation.”  The band’s more recent inspiration has shifted towards groups like The Velvet Underground and Sonic Youth. Stimulated by these band’s ability to “create their own thing out of a vague of nothingness,” Been Stellar resonates with and feels compelled by this idea. Each member of this dynamic group has made the intrepid decision to fully commit themselves to Been Stellar, leading to full focus on their expanding discography and a refreshed synergy within the group. Expect a massive jump for this extremely talented band and look out for a crisp, new sound found within Been Stellar’s upcoming project. 

Check out some of Been Stellar's tunes and support artists by following them on their socials linked below! :)