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MP3 Barakus - EP

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Barakus is an all original rock band from Washington, DC, with a sound as real as it is dramatic. Sexy and sensual, with an exciting blend of grit and attitude, the band brings a level of intensity that really resonates with its fans. Songs like "Ticket t

7 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Modern Rock, ROCK: Progressive Rock

Barakus is a rock band from Washington, DC, with a sound as real as it is dramatic. Sexy and sensual, with an exciting blend of grit and attitude, the band brings a level of intensity that really resonates with its fans. Songs like "Ticket to My Soul" expose the band's versatility and dynamic range, which contrasts beautifully to the energized "Love and Money" and the vibrant "Rise Up With Me". "These songs are basically an extension of our souls," says Code, the band's singer and rhythm guitarist. "There is a real passion to each song, and I think it goes over well with the people who listen to it."

The product of the classified ads in the Washington City Paper, the band has been crafting its sound since the summer of 2002. "Our writing styles really complement each other nicely," explains lead guitarist Matthew Manos. "I'll play something and in no time he'll complete the song. Or he'll play something and I'll complete the song. It's all very...effortless."

But the rise of Barakus has been anything but effortless, as the band has endured many of the tribulations typical of a growing band and a number of obstacles that could not have been foreseen. "Let's just say that the stories continue to grow. Minus the drug addictions, we're building one hell of a 'Behind the Music' special!" explains Code with a coy smile.

Despite various set backs, the band pushed forward and caught a break in the summer of 2004. After numerous false starts and fruitless auditions, the band met drummer Michael Patrick Galante, a Berklee protégé with a deft ability to balance power and finesse. Returning to the DC area after a lengthy stint in Dallas, TX, Galante did not initially intend to get back into the music scene. "I've been playing in bands most of my life," he explains. "From time to time you get worn down. But I couldn't stay away for long, and soon enough I was back testing the waters."

Behind the strength of Galante's drumming, the band reemerged on the scene as a three-piece while continuing to audition bassists. "We are extremely goal oriented and determined to continue forward in one way or another," says Code. "Playing without a bassist is not ideal, but it beats the hell out of not playing at all."

"If anything, the times we gigged without a bassist helped the three of us become tighter," adds Galante. "Without the low end, there is no room for mistakes."

For the remainder of 2004 and the beginning of 2005, Barakus shared the stage with a number of different bassists, each with their unique playing style and career objectives. The band returned to the studio as well to work on its first EP (Barakus EP - 2005), and solicited the assistance of bassist Brian "Thumbs" Keating, who currently plays with local standout Shane Hines and the Trance.

"We worked with Thumbs to get the most appropriate bass line for each song," explains Manos. "He presented some ideas and we worked from there. He definitely understood what we were trying to achieve, which made the whole process that much easier. Plus, he's a phenomenal talent."

With the EP complete, the band was poised to hit on all cylinders. Then the band met bassist Rick Cardarelli, whose flaunts a deep and powerful playing style that really accentuates the Barakus sound. "Rick has a very good ear and a great understand of the pocket," says Code. "We have no rules to our songwriting, which forces each of us to rely on our ears and our intuition."

Barakus is now moving ahead as a complete unit for the first time in its existence, and is aggressively promoting its EP at its shows and online. Currently, all seven songs on the EP are sitting in the top 20 list on, which garners thousands of plays each week. Moreover, since June 2005, the band has often placed higher than nation acts like Taking Back Sunday, Sevendust and Lil' Jon.

Citing a truly wide range of influences, ranging from U2 and the Beatles to Alice in Chains and Carcass, the band's sound is definitely its own. Unique yet still palpable, innovative yet not over-the-top, there is something new to discover with each listen. Be it the sheer power of the vocals, the percussive strumming of the rhythm guitar, the soulful wails of the lead guitar, or the dynamic grooves of the bass and drums...audiences will not have a hard time finding something to enjoy.

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