September 27, 2008

Misquoted: w/ Dan le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip

Misquoted: w/ Dan le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip

[This is the other interview I got to do during the Monolith Music Fest. I was planning on uploading it after I finished the wrap ups, but I've not had any time to work on that recently, so I figured I'd just upload this thing now. I love how it started. You can't tell, but it was very cordial. Dan and Pip are awesome dudes, and I have a feeling I came off a little awkward, but that's kind of natural for me haha]

Pip: I’m Pip

Luke: I’m Luke

Dan: I’m Dan

L: Well it’s nice to meet you Dan and Pip. All right, well I really love you guy’s music, how’d you two get together? Well, first, do you mind if I record this?

P: yeah yeah, go ahead.

D: Nah, make him write it down, and let’s make up words


Pip: It’s weird, we grew up in the same town, but we didn’t really know each, and then we worked together in a record shop. That’s where we kindamet. But then we didn’t start working together musically until we were living on different sides, on opposite sides of London, kinda thing, and we’d just arena over myspace kinda thing, as typical as that kind of thing is these days…

L: Yeah. So I imagine you heard Dan’s DJ stuff and…
P: Yeah, well, I contacted Dan because he promoted nights and I was touring just promoting my solo album.

D: Yeah, it wasn’t on any musical credibility; it was on the fact that I could get him a gig.


P: Yeah, and it went from there. And when I played the gig, I done a remix of one of my solo tracks, and it just went from there.

L: Yeah. You’ve got a really interesting way of … rapping, essentially, and, sort of like, how did you develop that?

P: Basically it developed from a Lack of skill and development. I’ve had people comment on my unusual flow … it’s because I come from a spoken word background, so, when I write, it’s all about the words, it’s not particularly about how it flows or how it sounds, I’m more about the content. So the flow is just trying to fit the words in without, ah, running out of breath kinda thing.

L: Yeah yeah, I think too many people just try to rhyme stuff. Like Lil’ Wayne’s gonna try to rhyme one thing with another instead of, you know, actually…

P: Yeah. Yeah yeah, it’s weird,

D: …It’s just got more …

P: it’s been picked up more in America that it’s an unusual flow…

D: …Yeah…

P:… It’s just an amateurish flow and style.

D: I’d say it’s got more scope for change, as well.

P: Yeah

D: ‘Cause, you can move with the style, instead of someone like Lil’ Wayne, that’s gonna have a very similar flow.
P: But that’s the thing I do like about people like Lil’ Wayne, cause then, a lot of it will just be him flowing and doing different things, but then he will sling some actual content in, and it makes it all the more impact-ful, ya know what I mean? If all you’re doing is really heavy, deep, depressing stuff, if this other guy’s just rapping about nonsense, right, and then suddenly slings in some really serious political or something it like … whoa, this is good, that’s good, yeah, yeah.

L: And your *pointing at Dan* tracks are just awesome. They’re really peculiar, and, I remember, I initially got into you guys because I got into your *again, pointing at Dan* stuff.

D: yeah?

L: Yeah, it was the spoken word piece with “Cupid” talking over it?

D: Yeah yeah.

L: I, that, I, oh man.

P: Joshua

D: Yeah, Joshua’s good.

P: That’s an awesome piece as well. It really went perfectly over that beat, because that was when they were all instrumental beats, originally, wasn’t it?

D: Yeah. … I even sent that beat to Bob Dylan…

L: Yeah?

D: He never did respond. I’m quite offended too (chuckle).
L: How did you, sort of, come to be the DJ that you are?

D: Just, just because a kind of, um, … not being able to play with other people. I’m … really bad in bands. Like, I play guitar, but I was always just a little bit too “I know that it needs to be like this” and I’d have to settle for it sort of being half done. So in order to make everything myself meant that it could sound the way I wanted it to. And the good thing is I’m still … still learning … all the time. So, over the course of writing the album, there’s so much that changed and developed, and I hope, constantly, that every album has that … oddness and… yeah.

L: yeah, I especially saw that with the first single that came out of that, “Thou Shalt Always Kill,” that was, that … like the last half of that song is almost completely instrumental. That’s very peculiar for what is essentially a rap based song.

D: Yeah. There’s a couple that just go off on to a musical thing. It’s quite a nice thing to have as well, ‘cause when we’re playing countries that don’t speak English, it’s nice to have those instrumental bits, because people can latch on to that if they understand.

P: They can relax a bit, I mean, ‘cause even if they’re enjoying it and not understanding, they’re gonna be trying to pick up on occasional bits, just because that’s natural. If there’s someone talking, you’re naturally gonna …

L: …Yeah…

P: … Yeah, so it’s good when there is just the music, they can just stop trying to translate and just enjoy it.

L: Yeah, I remember seeing videos of you guys at, like house parties, and those people seem just be going crazy.

P: I mean, we did do a lot of small little gigs, just like, rooms above pubs, and stuff like that.

D: We kinda … yeah it’s weird, because we got booked for a lot early on, and got bigger before we done the smaller gigs… even playing earlier this year, there were just a few of those that were insane.

P: At one of those ones is one of my favorite of our Youtube clips because halfway through Thou Shalt, or no, the beginning of Thou Shalt … because it was weird, because it was a wrist band festival, but it was in the city, so there was a load of people outside, but without wrist bands you couldn’t come in and see us, and the stage was just by a big window. So we got up to Thou Shalt and I just, climbed out the window. So I finished the gig on the street, which meant inside everyone got up on stage and danced where Dan was. Everyone else just came outside and was in the street.


P: It made for a nice… Youtube clip. There’s a lot of video phone footage

September 23, 2008

Monolith Music Fest. Wrap Up (Saturday): Superdrag


Basically, I was bored by them, so didn't put any effort into actually staying for much of their set. I go there near the end of one song, then they played Sucked Out, and then they started another one, and I left. Despite their stage presence, I was simply not interested.

Superdrag - Sucked Out (everyone ought to all ready have this song, but if you don't all ready)

Monolith Music Fest. Wrap Up (Saturday): Cameron McGill and What Army

Cameron McGill and What Army

I've been following Cameron McGill since he played the South Park Music Festival in '06. He played Monolith last year too, but that was only at the acoustic stage, accompanied by Leslie of Leslie and the Badgers. This time he brought his full band along, and I must say I've never heard his material better.

It is amazing how well he carried the songs on his own, but compared to his performance with his full band, I'll never be able to see Cameron McGill alone, because it will never be the same. They performed with an intensity barely matched by anyone else at Monolith this year. A lot of their stuff was newer, me only being familiar with the material off of the first album, so it was almost like I was seeing a completely different band, but that's not a terrible thing, especially considering the band. Heck yes Cameron, heck yes. I hope to see you again next year.

Cameron McGill & What Army - As Ready As I'll Never Be

September 22, 2008

Misquoted: w/ LoveLikeFire

So, because I'm taking a really long time getting all of my reviews of the Monolith Music Festival up, I'm going to post a special little something that I was going to post after the last Monolith wrap-up blogs. That is clearly going to take my busy behind at least another week to finish up (in my defense, uploading pictures takes a long time, and when I took around 967 of them...), so here is a thing:

Misquoted: w/ LoveLikeFire

[I got to interview LoveLikeFire on the second day of the Monolith Music Festival. Because it was at the festival, there is a certain amount of noise going on around at one point, for about 2 seconds, I just can't tell what was being said. I suppose that's kind of the premise for "Misquoted" though, isn't it? I hope I stayed as true to their words as possible though. Anyway, here it is:]

Luke (that's me): I know being in a band it’s really hard to tell what kind of you’re making, like what genre that you fit in. So was there, like, a goal for a type of sound to make…?

Ann: Oh, like an intentional goal?

L: Yeah. Or, Were you guys just getting together and making some “rock” music?
Robert: I think we all just have our own tastes that we each sort of bring up to the table and it kind of averages out to what we are. It’s not really intentions. It’s definitely things that all of us like and dislike…

A: …And we kind of go through little mini phases of thing that we’re really into. But it kind of evens itself out. But, it still has to be us. It’s hard to really say, like, that we definitely have…

R:…I think we balance each other, in a way, too…

A: yeah

L: That’s awesome. That way you’re not stuck to one thing. You can do whatever you want.

Ted: It’s like each of us have our own, little areas of taste and wherever it overlaps is kind of our sound…

L: Yeah, like one day you’re feeling a little bit like “Explosions in the Sky” or…

A: Yeah actually, yeah exactly. That’s how it kind of works out. And I think our limitations kind of create our sound too. Like, what we’re able to do and how we interpret most of our favorite artists, or what we’re into at the moment … it kind of manifests itself in our music.

L: You can definitely tell in a couple of the songs some of certain influences, like “Arcade Fire” on that one song … “On a Tower?”

A: Oh yeah, “FROM a Tower”

…[there’s about 2 seconds where there’s too much surrounding noise to tell what was said here. Looks like I didn’t pick the best place to do the interview]
L: I’ve noticed that out of all your songs, certain aspects are super clean, and then the other half of the song, or, half of the band is really dirty and like “My Bloody Valentine” wall of noise. Was that intentional?

Dave: That’s somewhat the rhythm section. Bob and I, we’re both fans of the 90’s kind of noisey shoegaze, so we kind of bring a little bit of that to the table, but, hopefully, not too much

A: Haha, aaaaand, it also might have been the mix in room yesterday. If you thought it was really clean, then …

L: I dunno, I thought the vocals were like, super clean. And, even on the recordings, its so smooth. I mean, I don’t really know what it is.

A: Like it cuts right through?

L: Yeah, it’s just, I dunno… It’s just some of the smoothest vocals I’ve ever heard.

A: Oh … haha, well thank you.

L: Have you guys ever heard of Forget Cassettes?
R: No.

A: Actually, who was just … yeah, Pete was just telling us about that band.

L: They played here last year, and I’d heard their album a little bit before that, kind of like how I’d heard you guys, and it was almost the exact same experience. They were a little bit more shoegaze, but … yeah…

A: But it was a similar sort of vibe?

L: Yeah, definitely, definitely.

A: I’ll have to check them out. They’re from Seattle?

L: Yeah [I was wrong! Forget Cassettes is from Nashville! Sorry Anne :(]. I was listening to your WOXY set you did like a year and a half ago, there were only three members at that point, I think you’re the new one *mistakenly points to Ted who has been there basically since the beginning*

R: No, I’m the new one.

D: Jesse was our original bass player. He’s still a really good friend of ours … just, different directions …

L: artistic differences?

D: Not really artistic, we really wanted to just be out on tour and…

A: It’s a huge commitment

D: It’s a sacrifice.

L: I remember you said that this was, like, another full time job, but, like, every single day.
A: Oh, oh yeah. This, this is more than a full time job.

R: Now it’s like the only full time job.

All: (laughing)

L: That’s gotta be fun.

R: We’re very driven, we really work our asses off, so, it’s kind of a labor of love. We push ourselves hard.

L: Yeah, I can tell. Actually, my favorite song was “William,” do you guys want to talk about that a little bit?

A: Yeah it’s one of our favorite songs too

R: Yeah, that song really gives the whole spectrum of where this band is. The intimate stuff, the huge rock stuff, the atmospheric stuff, the quiet stuff, the loud stuff…

A: …It’s kind of dark… It’s got a little bit of everything that we all love

L: Yeah, that was definitely the highlight of the set for me.

R: It’s definitely a fun song to play, people really seem to like it. When we play it live it gets a good response.

A: Except for “From a Tower” none of it’s been released yet so we don’t really know … like … well no one’s heard anything, so we don’t really know, like…

L: Yeah …. Well when is it gonna come out?

R: The new stuff will be coming out probably sometime early next year. We just finished recording like two days before we started this tour. Some of it’s up on our myspace for a limited time too.

A: Very limited time haha.

L: Do you guys find that it’s hard to find an audience for shoegaze these days? I mean, I know you guys aren’t completely shoegaze,

T: We wouldn’t market ourselves that way at all, it’s just incidental.

A: Yeah, it’s funny, a lot of people kind of pick up on dreamy, sort of dream pop. They always seem to say that we’re sort of dreamy, shoegazey, and I think … I don’t really know

R: It doesn’t seem very dreamy to us.

D: I sort of feel like, and this wasn’t necessarily intentional, but I feel like I hear more of a Coney-theme lately. I don’t think any of us intended that, but, it’s got this sort of western thing that’s happening.

T: I kind of got into that for a while, and it kind of stuck.

L: Haha, it was you!

All: (laughing)

T: I mean, like, with the “From a Tower” thing, it was kind of the start of it…

A: …yeah, with the voice pad…

T: We kind of got into that for a moment, and we kind of liked it and stuck with it. It’s kind of coming through on some of the new stuff.

A: Yeah. I feel like if we could describe our sound, there is, kind of, a lush guitar element plus a little bit of a western kind of … Well I like Lee Hazlewood, I think Ted really likes Lee Hazlewood, so we have a little bit of that tendency, very Coney, Lee Hazlewood …

D: … very dramatic…

A: … Oh yeah, very dramatic … you know, that kind of element.

R: Yeah, very powerful. I’ll come in with a rhythm one day with something with a dramatic kind of feel to the harmonies.

L: Well, all right, I usually try to keep these things pretty short, so thank you guys so much.

[After going over each other’s names again, we all separated. Dave did happen to mention that they’ll be back through Denver again some point soon, so make sure to check them out when they come back. Funny side note, I did see Ted around the festival like 4 other times, and I actually was a little afraid he thought I was following him. Festivals can make people like me seem like real creepers. Anyway, I was really thankful to get to do this interview, and I hope to see these guys again when they come through.]

September 19, 2008

Monolith Music Fest. Wrap Up (Saturday): KaiserCartel


KaiserCartel, a few years back, was recommended pretty highly by some big-name person, and, while I don't remember the person who recommended them, the name always stuck with me. I remember checking their myspace (at the time, the only page mentioning them), and liking it. I didn't remember their songs when Monolith Time came, but I knew it was something I had enjoyed.

KaiserCartel is a simple folk duo, bordering on twee, but not sickeningly sweet. Their music seems like music a family band would make, in that it was honest and wholesome sounding, regardless of lyrics. They were cute, and friendly, and multifacited (i.e. they played a bunch of different instruments). They played for a small crowd, but the small crowd walked away quite pleased.

The next day the two played a cute little "broken down" set at one of the many merchant tables. I love when things like that happen.

KaiserCartel - Okay

Monolith Music Fest. Wrap Up (Saturday): The Morning Benders

The Morning Benders

The Morning Benders were cute, adorable even, but not very memorable. However, this was just my opinion. My band-mate Cody really enjoyed their set. I didn't stick around too long, so I don't know if they would have grown on me, but, according to Cody, they had a pretty great set.

The Morning Benders - Why Don't They Let Us Fall in Love? (Ronettes Cover)