There’s actually a funny story behind this one. A friend at another media site had been out to a show the night before and I was woken up to that wonderful ping of my Facebook messenger in the predawn hours. My friend had heard these guys play that night and was so excited by what he saw, he could not wait for me to interview these guys so he decided to take it upon himself to start the process in a group chat… and then duck out of the chat before we had a chance to do anything about it. A few sleepy exchanges between myself, Stosh Jonjak (Guitar) and Elliot Polak (Vocals) to be sure we all felt five in the morning was way too early to think, a few more hours to sleep, and several cups of coffee later, I was involved in one of the more fun and engaging interviews I’ve ever had.
MaxXout is not just hard rock but FUN hard rock. This is a serous band that likes to enjoy themselves right along with the fans. If you notice the featured image that runs with this article – this sums up MaxXout as I’ve come to know them. Energetic vocals, explosive guitar, and thunder on the drums! A really neat little fact about this band is that while they’re based out of Pittsburgh, Elliot isn’t in our area. I’m not going to give away his secret identity when he isn’t a Rock-N-Roll star on stage but I will say he’s far enough away that they practice remotely through a system they’ve set up (Here’s a hint, this Bruce Wayne type band member has an IT background so that probably helps with this). However they do it – it works. This is a band that began with talent, developed into passion and became a driving ambition to bring out the best of what they have to offer.
While the band may be a ‘Batman’ type mystery with all of the mild mannered daytime personalities they have going on, the music isn’t mysterious at all. This is old style hard rock, no glam, lots of slam. Not only have I had the opportunity to listen to their single Steel Toed Boots, about a boy who wore them every day but could beat you in a race every time, I’ve been to one of their live shows and had a blast! The occurrence of fire and explosions everywhere associated with these guys, like the cool video explosion on their Facebook page banner, is a great way to be introduced to them because it’s an explosion of passion for these guys in all they do musically. They match that passion with art and hope that it’s consumed by their fans in a way that creates a permanent connection in that temporary moment. They consider success, in part, to be able to bring their music to us in a way that really captures all the elements of their band – the art, the passion, the integration of certain things you might not realize are there, like bluesy guitar riffs and metal drum beats. When they feel they’ve hit that perfect balance of their music conveying their style while being approachable by so many people that they know each will take away their own individual experience from not only the recordings but that small change that happens when those songs are played live.
Speaking of ‘Live’, let me tell you a little about the show I caught. I don’t know what I was expecting to hear, live shows are a full on experience for me and I take away something different from them all, but when I saw Stosh’s guitar strap looked like it held huge rounds of ammo, I knew I was in for a treat. Elliot is passionate and has vocals that have a straight forward sound but cut through to the core of the music in a very pleasing way that, to me, goes back to the music I really loved during the 90’s. With Tom D’Andrea supplying thunder from the drum kit and Nate Offutt shaking the foundation with his bass riffs the whole thing is rather powerful. The music itself also has a throwback feel to go with the vocals but a modern edge – this band is certainly one for the masses because it incorporates so much while not going overboard.
You can listen to the song Steel Toed Boots or Narcan Atomizer on Bandcamp or Reverbnation but they’re only releasing a single at a time… and if you want to hear some of the stuff they’re coming up with you have to go to a show because some of this is only being done live. As I find out more about this band I feel like I’m honestly unraveling more layers of them and only finding out more cool stuff they have going on. Come hang out with me and see all of this for yourself at their set during the Millvale Music Festival and you can thank me after for introducing you to this great band!
<3 Lady Jaye
Jana Lee Macheca (aka Lady Jaye) is the owner and editor of First Angel Media as well as professional photographer and writer. Having worked in national and local levels of music media her goal is to provide professional coverage for bands of all levels.