My My My adds a little bit of Salt-N-Pepa to the mix

By John Benson

When Chicago act My My My is feeling feisty on stage, the indie-rock and indie-pop band often plays into the sexual tension of its 2010 album’s title track “Leather Silk.”

“Our song is about a relationship and someone trying to catch someone else’s attention, so we often work in Salt-N- Pepa’s hit ‘Push It,’” said Cincinnati native Snow, calling from the Windy City. “I’ve always loved it and it’s impossible not to smile when you hear it. The audience loves how it plays out.”

Playing out is something My My My, which has had its music featured on reality television shows “Keeping up with the Kardashians,” “Bad Girls Club,” “The Real World: San Diego” and “The Real World: Las Vegas,” is hoping to do more of this spring and summer. In addition to major July dates booked for the Taste of Chicago and Milwaukee Summerfest, the six-piece has a mini-Ohio tour scheduled for this month. This includes its Youngstown debut Saturday at Cedars.

Formed five years ago, the band — Snow (vocals, microkorgm percussion), Russell Baylin (guitar, vocals), Ante S. Gelo (guitars), John Szymanski (guitars, keys and vocals), Jake Bartolone (bass, vocals) and John Sorenson (drums) — has been compared to the likes of the New Pornographers. In addition to the group boasting a similar male-female singer dynamic, Snow said her voice is often compared to its vocalist Neko Case, which she doesn’t hear but takes as a compliment nonetheless.

Musically, the outfit is working on its next full-length effort, which perspective-wise, appears to be somewhat of a digression from previous release “Leather Silk.”

“The last one was a lot about relationships and because we have two vocalists, a boy-girl dichotomy, we were able to kind of create a sensation of a relationship kind of playing out within our songs,” Snow said. “We’ve been using a lot more of keyboards and synths and stuff, which with our newer stuff it’s kind of like the relationship a person has with themselves. It’s really interesting. We try to capture moods through our music and that’s something I really like and admire in other people’s music as well.”

One of the new tracks getting stage time is Snow’s favorite, “A Planet I Never Knew Was There.” She describes it as being a moody but powerful song influenced by Sufjan Stevens. Another unreleased song the band has been playing out is “Mortal Phoenix,” which has a Blondie vibe mixed with modern nuances.

As for its upcoming Youngstown show, the notion of hearing a Salt-N-Pepa song in an indie club is somewhat fascinating. What about hearing a line or two from the ’80s act’s other hits such as “Shoop” or “Let’s Talk About Sex?”

“No, unfortunately not,” Snow laughed. “We’ll have to work that into the future. But I did just hear ‘Let’s Talk About Sex’ the other day. I forgot how awesome it was.”

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