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Purchase-Bred Lip Critic a “Band to Watch”

Stereogum and others delve into their unique sound ahead of the May 17 release of their debut album Hex Dealer.

What do The Simpsons, sculptor Louise Bourgeois, skate culture, and overblown “eye candy stuff like Mad Max or the Speed Racer movie” all have in common?

They represent the “non-music influences” of the unconventional band Lip Critic that’s grabbing attention, such as “Band to Watch” on

Lip Critic band

Purchase Born

Formed at Purchase in 2018, Lip Critic is Studio Production majors Connor Kleitz ’21, sampler and co-producer, Bret Kaser ’20, lead vocalist and lyricist, and Ilan Natter ’20, one of two drummers. The other is Danny Eberle ’22, an Anthropology major with minors in Journalism and Media Studies.

They describe the influence of their  Purchase experiences…

“Purchase allowed them an interdisciplinary education that they’ve applied to every aspect of their band.

“‘I felt like I wrung every droplet—I was auditing classes because they wouldn’t even let me take more for credit,’” Kaser says.

“His completed course load is a diverse grocery list—printmaking, graphic design, costume construction, sound architecture, live sound audio mixing. He also shares that, at the time, he was interested in writing for dance choreography.

“Eberle mentions a sound sculpture class they all took where they made transduction sculptures and created audio based on different vibrational origins.

“‘I knew that I didn’t want to study music, necessarily, but I wanted to be in a place that allowed me to meet other musicians and play music,’” he says.

“‘You could get away with trying a lot of dumb things and find out what worked,’” Natter adds.

“These are the operational roots of a self-sufficient band, doing everything from producing and mixing their music to screen printing their merch.”

From Band to Watch on

Still from Lip Critic video In The Wawa (Convinced I Am God)

More Love

Britain’s New Musical Express calls the band an “unstoppable force.”

“At their gigs, the genre-clashing four-piece utilise an unconventional stage set-up to thrilling effect. You need to see them live—immediately.”

From The Unstoppable Force of Lip Critic on

And the UK’s biggest independent online music mag, The Line of Best Fit, named Lip Critic #1 among their “Best of the Best Highlights,” calling them…

“Satirical mavericks with just a hint of nihilism, the genre-defying and aesthetically amorphous Lip Critic challenge—even to their own disadvantage.”


The band shared their origin story—like a pitch for sketch comedy.

“‘We had this idea for a bit, like a punk band called The Milkman of America. It would be songs about the plight of the milkman, how nobody needs a milkman anymore,’” says Kaser.

“‘Then we eventually just did it and it turned into more of an actual musical project than a joke, but it’s still somewhat of a joke.’”

Their debut album Hex Dealer is due out 5/17 on Partisan Records.

Check out “In the Wawa (Convinced I Am God)”