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While some band monikers are so random they seem to have been pulled from a hat, others, like Count Pariah, are so cleverly enigmatic that they serve as a mission statement, telling us everything relevant about the band’s vibe, musical purpose, unique flow of contrasting styles and defiant sense of what it means to be independent, creating their multi-faceted powerhouse rock on their own terms.

In an insightful 2022 interview with the Music Existence blog, the Knoxville, TN based band – frontman James “Shibby” Croft, guitarist Jason Breland, bassist Dustin (“DB”) Barousse and drummer Adam “BiRD” Tilley – explained, “By definition, the count is of nobility. A pariah is a social outcast. We like to look at ourselves as the kings of the outcasts. That’s who we are. We don’t play by your rules. We don’t let big money and big music tell us what we can and can’t do. We do what we like because the passion is there. The passion is in the music.”

With everything from acoustic tunes to infectious, edgy four- minute tracks and heavier, long form jams, Count Pariah’s fresh, freewheeling approach to indie rock has caught fire quickly. Since inking with Blue Collar Records, they’ve released the critically acclaimed EP Hymns for Heathens and an explosive single, “Paranoia,” whose animated video has over 24K views on YouTube. JW Vibe wrote of the EP: “In less than 20 minutes, Count Pariah will truly cleanse your soul. Just as traditional church hymns express worship, these Hymns for Heathens express and are designed to purge us of the darkness.” Essentially Pop noted that “there’s also a clear tension and unease . . . but there’s still an element of beauty amongst all the darkness and mystery.”



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