Abraham Levitan, lead singer-songwriter of the prog-indie-rock-pop band Baby Teeth, says they didn’t start out to be avant-garde; they just opened up with pop rhythms and it turned out that way.
“We can have a very straightforward pop structure that will veer off into something very proggy, then head back into pop,” Levitan says. “It’s almost like we’re perverting pop music [and] making a commentary about pop music … At least two of us have always debated what’s on top 40 and whether we like the new P Diddy album. So when people think we’re weird, it’s because we put a lot of influences together in a minute of music.”
Not to mention an energetic stage show: “We’re all pretty active on stage; we move around a lot, try to take it to the limit — like an ’80s music video. A lot of high-fiving and triumph.”
Listen to just a few of their songs, and it feels like what would be on the Pretty in Pink soundtrack if that movie were made today: 1980s rhythms and beats, spun off in an entirely unexpected direction. That’s not all Baby Teeth’s music has in common with the best teen movies of that era.
“It’s about vulnerability [and] writing from the perspective of a 14-year-old who’s very sensitive and easily hurt,” Levitan says. “I’m not really interested in writing a cool guy’s perspective on the world. I’d much rather write about the guy who just had his heart broken by the cheerleader.”