PREMIERE: Crag Mask Put New Haven on the Map with “Secret Plane”

The new single from the Connecticut rockers further distances Zackery Abramo from his experimental pop past in Vundabar.

Connecticut isn’t nowhere, but for an up-and-coming rock band, it certainly isn’t somewhere. After departing from recent Boston favs Vundabar (and since returning), Zackery Abramo formed Crag Mask, a group blending influences from his Beantown musical coming-of-age experience—the heavy-rock guitar of a band like Pile with the softened vocals of Horse Jumper of Love—in the more obscure locale of New Haven.

This feeling of being adrift between two musical hotspots is the frustration the grungy quartet wrestle with on the latest single from their sophomore LP, Bend, entitled “Secret Plane.” “Being in a band in a C-class market state is extremely tough to break out of, no matter where you exist in the United States—but Connecticut is its own sort of special place,” Abramo vents. “It’s hard enough to get good touring acts through Connecticut, let alone get locals into the scene that already exists.”

Yet the Nutmeg State has recently birthed such indie heavy weights as Charly Bliss and Sorority Noise (who lent Crag Mask their drummer, Jason Rule), successfully breaking out into the wider indie scene. “Despite how insular the scene here is, it’s extremely fertile with amazing bands,” Abramo continues. “It’s just hard for it to not feel like a drive-through state at times, and ‘Secret Plane’ was written in response to this. It also deals with a challenge we and many other bands face where we get written off as just a ‘heavy’ band. A lot of the time we are too heavy to play with indie bands, and too soft to play with heavy bands. The song is about navigating all of this and trying to carve out a space where we fit in. And is it all really worth it?”

Bend is due out July 12. You can pre-order it here.

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