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"Those Are Your Friends,"- An Interview With Opt Out

Article written by Kyla Wyllie
Photography by Annika Cimas
Whether or not you think that everything happens for a reason, there is definitely some truth behind that belief. Local rock band, Opt Out, is just one of many examples on how one event can lead to something bigger. “None of this really would have happened without a lot of mistakes, I was in percussion class by mistake, but if that hadn’t have happened then I wouldn’t have met Kyle and we wouldn’t be in Opt Out together,” Shin Chung, bassist for the trio, tells us in our interview. Kyle Bozykowski, the drummer, adds to that statement, “Shin and Ryan (lead guitar and vocals) were already friends, then I was in percussion class with Shin and he asked if I’d want to jam with the two of them sometime.” Just like that, three promising young personalities got together to create something that many people would know them for in upcoming months, rock and roll.
Mistake or not, the three boys definitely click, both on stage, and off. “Shin and I both have considered ourselves more performers because we would always be getting in trouble in the classes we have together, we just do stupid stuff. We definitely love being the center of attention,” Ryan Barnes exclaims when we comment on their surplus of energy. This rambunctiousness shines through purely on the Soma stage, or any for that matter. Getting the crowd pumped is what Opt Out was born to do, both interacting with fans and putting on shows that no one in the audience will soon forget. “We like to bring the energy more than the music,” says Barnes. When they play a show, the one thing that sets the boys apart from the rest is their stage presence, flooding the entire room with infectious animation and moxie. “In all honesty,” Shin adds, “we like writing songs and we like performing on stage, but as a band, we say that instead of focusing more on making the songs perfect, we focus on just entertaining the people there in any way, shape or form,” he explains to us, with Kyle then adding, “I mean, and playing good too,” with Shin quick to jump in, “and playing good too.”
Take my word for it, these three do so much more than just “play good.” There’s no denying that fact that they have musical talent. “Our songwriting is progressing, as we continue, so I mean, I definitely think that we have room to grow and write some more complex material,” Ryan adds to this, “our first song that we wrote, ‘Just Go,’ is four chords, but everyone loves it for some reason. Like I said, we’re going to start writing more complex stuff but still keep to our roots of being just ‘simpletons.'” Kyle briefly commented on this topic of conversation, saying, “we just haven’t found that right sound that fits us.” However, with the help of the “Soma scene,” they’re slowly but surely finding it, guided mainly by Ross Martin, from Essex Class, and Pat Collins, from the late Snykes and future Rage Cage, whom are constantly supporting and mentoring the band and encouraging them to “expand their horizons.”
With music, there’s a constant absence of the “behind the scenes” assistance, the people supporting and helping the musicians are practically non-existent in the eyes of the viewer, especially outside local music.”There’s such an innocence and purity to local music,” Shin opens up to us a little more on this unseen issue. “You see these celebrities and they’re just strangers to you, you don’t know who writes the music, you don’t know anything like that. But when it comes to local music, those are your friends, those are your neighbors, those are your brothers, sisters, up on stage. It’s just that so much more raw emotions go through local music.”
Future Opt Out shows will be featured on the site, and don’t forget to check out their Soundcloud:  !


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