Picture Me Broken’s Layla Brooklyn Allman on Their New EP, Growing Up With Southern Rock Royalty
But that should change soon.
Based in Northern California, Picture Me Broken recently released a four-song EP called Mannequins and we love it here at Noisecreep. It’s a dark, infectious collection that echoes the soaring metallic power of Evanescence and Nightwish, but it’s very much it’s own unique flavor and we cannot wait for the rest.
Noisecreep recently had the pleasure of speaking with Layla about the new EP, her musical education and what her famous father thinks about Picture Me Broken.
Brooklyn, these four songs on the EP are so powerful, but early next year you’ll be developing the rest of the album, right?
Right. And going into the EP we knew we were a different band. We had three new members and we also had the opportunity of working with the producer David Bendeth (Paramore, Breaking Benjamin) who is someone I wanted to work with since I was 14. So we knew we were going to evolve into something new. I mean, our first album we were just 15-years-old. This EP was the defining moment of who are we as a band and what we sound like. We wanted to mature as a band and have our sound reflect that maturity and we think we did that.
You talk about maturity and yet at just 19, you’re writing and performing with an amazing amount of sophistication and confidence.
I always say that I’m mentally 40 [laughs]. I think I’ve always strived to do something a little more grandiose and have always kind of reached for the stars and accomplished things ahead of my time. I joined the band when I was 12, and even then, everything I created I always wanted to be proud of at any age.
Listen to ‘Broken’
When did you know you wanted to be in a band?
My first serious musical endeavor was piano. I took classical piano at about eight and then got into musical theater. I couldn’t sing at all at first. I only learned to sing to score some roles in the productions! Eventually I attended a school where some kids were into rock music and I had a crush on this guy that wore an AFI shirt. I looked them up and from that moment on they’ve become one of my favorite bands. They’re the reason I wanted to get into dark rock music and why I gravitated toward cryptic lyrics and an aggressive mix of clean vocals and screaming. From there I stumbled into Green Day, Alkaline Trio and some other bands. I went to see Green Day and it was so magnanimous and I was like, why would anybody want to do any other job then what these guys are doing? From that day on I wanted to make a career of it. Then I met three kid on the playground in seventh grade, we started playing Guns N’ Roses, Green Day and Nirvana covers at church festivals or whatever. Then we decided to make it real project and that’s how the band started.
With a musician father, you were no doubt exposed to lots of good music growing up.
I’ve been going to Allman Brothers shows since I was child. I always appreciated the stellar musicianship, but I would say that the Allman brothers influence really doesn’t go past the DNA. It is inspiring to know that people in my bloodline have accomplished so many incredible things. But they’re not the reason I gravitate toward rock music.
Has he heard the EP?
We finished this record and my dad listened to it and ever since he’s been really interested in the band, which makes me very happy. He likes the music, he likes the band, and it’s a nice feeling for me.