Maybe not the best neighbors, but Bruiser sure is interesting to watch.
Maybe not the best neighbors, but Bruiser sure is interesting to watch.
Photo Courtesy of Bruiser

Bruiser Is a Little Like the Brady Bunch — Except Much, Much Louder

Next time your landlord gives you shit about few nails in the wall or a chip in the paint, you should take them over to Bruiser's pad. The local experimental trio turned their house in Miami's historic Buena Vista neighborhood into, essentially, a very hardcore Airbnb. “The landlord didn't like the footprints on the ceiling,” guitarist Malcolm Lauredo says. “He was like, 'How did these get here?'"

“Two-and-a-half years ago, we all moved into this house,” drummer Anthony Alvarez recalls as he sits on the upstairs balcony of the band's digs. “We all lived downstairs, so we got acquainted quickly, and in our free time we started jamming.” Colloquially known as Grown-Up House, the tenants have hosted many shows and offered a couch to crash for countless touring bands through the years. However, their era of raucous parties is, sadly, coming to an end. “We're still going to have shows, but it has to be much more chill,” Lauredo says.

But fear not, this isn't the end of the band altogether. Comprised of guitarist Malcolm Lauredo, bassist Adriano Di Lorenzo, and drummer Anthony Alvarez, Bruiser has been popping eardrums in the Miami music scene for over a year. Inspiring a fervent following with their blend of 90s-tinged, Midwest-inspired guitar rock (don't call it emo, they plead), the Bruiser boys are readying a follow-up release to their first four-track tape.

The earliest incarnation of Bruiser didn't look much like it does today. Lauredo recounts the first time he and Alvarez met Bogdan Anderko, head of the Miami-based No Work Records, the label that's released all of the band's recordings so far. “It was a couple of years ago. We had a '90s-themed party at the house. This was also the first 30 Days of Rock event," Lauredo says. 30 Days of Rock was a locally organized event last year where musicians would put their names in a hat and be randomly assigned to a band. 30 days later, those bands would play a set at Churchill's. 

"I got Anthony and Bogdan, and our band was called Catholic High School," Lauredo remembers. "The first thing Bogdan said about the band was, 'We must play crust.' I think we have to put that in the liner notes somewhere,” Lauredo smiles. “He also once called us, what was it?"

"'The most aggressive chill band,'" Alvarez chimes in, igniting laughter among the band. “But Bogdan is a unique part of the scene," Lauredo adds. "He's always at Churchill's filming bands, his YouTube channel is like an archive of all these local acts.”

Catholic High School didn't last, but the band's relationships endured. Soon, Di Lorenzo, a resident of Grown-Up House, joined the group simply out of convenience. “I don't think we would ever schedule practice if we didn't live together,” he says. He describes Bruiser's writing style as sporadic and fragmented. The band usually starts writing music individually or in pairs, but they all unite once the noise travels throughout the house like the smell of pizza baking in an oven. “The writing process is split evenly because we're all very stubborn,” Di Lorenzo admits. “The trio dynamic is good, because if two people disagree we have a third opinion that overrides it,” Lauredo says.

After playing local gigs about six times a month for the last year, Bruiser is taking a small breather at the moment, enjoying a rare few weeks of silence. The band's next scheduled show is in Tallahassee on September 4, and Bruiser will be back at Churchill's with Brazilian group O Inimigo on October 16. 

The next Bruiser release, a split tape with local surf-tinged act Booty and the Browns, is shaping up quite differently from the band's early recordings. “We've been embracing experimentation in the studio a lot,” says Lauredo. “The production is more polished, but we've got noise tracks connecting things, Adriano playing circuit-bent toys and weird instruments, and we even have a spoken-word bit.” Bruiser and Booty and the Browns are also planning a month long west coast tour in December. 

The trio never wants to stop trying new things, and lately has been trying to improvise more when playing live. Asked whether they prefer the comfort of pre-written material or the thrill of not knowing what will happen next, Di Lorenzo says: “I like both, but the experimentation can sometimes go awry. It can be exciting, sure, like nuclear war is exciting.”

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