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Brooklyn band finishes, releases album years after drummer’s slaying - Brooklyn Paper

Brooklyn band finishes, releases album years after drummer’s slaying

Keep the music alive: John LaMacchia (left) is throwing an April 3 party for the release of his band Spylacopa’s second album, which was delayed for years after the drummer, Troy Young, was murdered in his Carroll Gardens apartment. Michael MacIvor, a friend of Young’s, will perform in his and LaMacchia’s band Dead Air.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

He will live on in song.

A Brooklyn band is finally releasing a record that was delayed for years after its drummer’s murder, and the group is throwing a release party at Gowanus’s Lucky 13 Saloon on April 3.

Progressive-metal act Spylacopa was in the middle of producing “Parallels,” the follow-up to its 2008 self-titled debut, when Tyshawn Augustus shot drummer Troy Young in his Carroll Gardens apartment during a robbery in December 2009. A judge jailed Augustus for the slaying last year, so Spylacopa’s leader said he felt it was the right time to release the tracks.

“After meeting Troy’s family during the trial, I just decided I have to put this music out,” said guitarist and band leader John LaMacchia, who lives in Gravesend. “It’s selfish to hold on to possibly the last recordings of Troy in a professional setting. The whole thing was such a tragedy. He was from Idaho, moved to New York, and in a short period of time, he worked his ass off to become a working musician, and his life was taken so violently.”

But first, LaMacchia had to finish the album. The band — a revolving cast of Metro-area rockers — had laid down instrument tracks, but Greg Puciato (of The Dillinger Escape Plan fame) never finished recording vocals before Young’s slaying. And when it came time to finish the album five years later, math-rock maestro Puciato was busy with other projects. So LaMacchia re-tooled the tunes and laid down the vocals himself.

“I’m happy that happened, because, in hindsight, I’m happier with this album than I would have been,” he said.

LaMacchia resisted the urge to make the songs about Young, instead preserving the tunes as written, he said.

“That was the weird thing for me,” he said. “It’s all songs about love, loss, and betrayal — basic rock song stuff — and that was a big hurdle. But I knew that Troy would have wanted this record to come out the way the artists intended.”

Fellow borough bands Godmaker, Meek is Murder, and Dead Air will perform at the release party, LaMacchia said.

Spylacopa’s future is uncertain, LaMacchia said. His main gig is now with Brooklyn fusion band Candiria, but he said the newly-released record ranks as one of his highest accomplishments.

“This album means more than any record has ever meant to me,” he said.

The album will be available from Rising Pulse Records on March 31.

Spylacopa’s “Paralells” Release Party at Lucky 13 Saloon [644 Sackett St. between Third and Fourth avenues in Gowanus, (718) 596–0666, www.risingpulse.com]. April 3 at 8 pm. $10.

Reach reporter Max Jaeger at mjaeger@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–8303. Follow him on Twitter @JustTheMax.
The beat goes on: Troy Young was murdered in his Carroll Gardens apartment in 2009. A former bandmate in the group Spylacopa finished recordings the two were working on in 2008 and is releasing the tracks at a party at Lucky 13 Saloon on April 3.
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