Thursday, January 24, 2013

INTERVIEW: Cassettes on Tape

1)      What do you want people to hear most when they hear your music?

We all grew up on the indie rock and shoegaze scene of the early 90's and so that if anything is our bedrock as a band, and that’s what we want to come through. We don't really write our songs to fit a specific genre but there's definitely that shared background that always underlines them.  And okay yeah sometimes when we write a song, we say something like let's make this sound like the jesus and mary chain wrote it, and then if that comes across, we feel pretty awesome about it. We just want to hear music that we love.  If people hear different things in the same song then that's pretty cool.

2)      Having music on Band Camp, along with other such platforms in music right now such as Sound Cloud, Spotify and others, do you feel that music is moving into a virtual age?  Personally, I fully support the idea of downloading songs for free from Band Camp and then if I like them buying them on vinyl.

The virtual age has been great for music. It's the ultimate in DIY, and we love it.  We’re a small Chicago band (we're all under 5'2"), but with these platforms we've been heard by people in Siberia and Portugal.  The fact that we can record something and make it available for people to hear the same day is amazing (not that we have that kind of focus).  It takes away any excuse you might have had about putting your work out there. We love playing out, so we mostly use the internet to introduce ourselves to people in order to get more opportunities to play shows. It's also been really great in connecting with other bands that share our musical sensibilities and connecting with people outside of the local scene, without having to put on shoes.  

3)      How important of a factor do you feel that record labels play in music these days when pretty much anyone can put their music on the internet as opposed to having to hand out demo tapes at shows, the distribution record labels can offer, etc.   It just seems like it’s a bit easier these days to succeed as a band- and even build up a strong fan base- before a label possibly comes calling for you.

Labels still have a role - depending on where you want to go as a band. The reality for artists who want to make a life out of their music is still hard. It's a ton of work to take on and do it all yourself. Labels can be a really great and powerful support structure for developing that, with touring support and PR, etc. Its easier to get started and get out, but by the same token that means there’s a lot more stuff competing for people’s attention. Ultimately every band or artist has to have their own definition for what success is for them and decide if being on a label gets them there.

4)      If you could tour with any single band or musician who would you pick and why?

We would play with the Smiths circa 1986.  Just to see them play again...oh, and to be able to time travel.  Mind you we would play the show commando, because there is a 99% chance that we'd throw our panties at the Mozzer.

5)      Who is your favorite New Kid on the Block?

Short answer...Joey McIntyre.  Fat answer...Steve "Biscuit" Walker (though, technically he was their manager.)  Okay but seriously... please don't make us choose.

6)      Who would win in a musical fight: Jack Black or Jack White?

It depends on the musical I suppose... Jack White would dominate if it was Les Miz... Jack Black would kill it in Cats.

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