Tuesday, July 16, 2013

INTERVIEW: Let's be Loveless (Eric and Abby)

1) You are from Brooklyn, which is widely considered to be the birthplace of shoegaze. How does it feel being from the epicenter of something that is much bigger than just a music scene that has spread literally across the world?

[ Eric ] It's incredibly inspiring and overwhelming at the same time. 
[Abby] Brooklyn feels like the major leagues. Everyone here is in a band. Their mailman, their mom, their cat is in a band. The saturation of musicians here makes you want to work twice as hard, but can also make you feel very small, not special.

2) When I first found your self-titled EP on Band Camp, it was only available as a stream. Then, more recently, it became $3.99 to download. I think that was a very smart move, to give it away as a stream for free at first, get people hooked on it, and then they'll pay to download it now. (A dollar a song is a good deal, right?) Was it planned out that way? I always feel like music should be free (at least to stream) because then if music is good enough, people will buy it in some way (or a t-shirt, etc.) and people argue that keeps bands from getting paid, but really it just means you won't get paid if no one likes your music and if no one likes your music you shouldn't possibly consider a day job. So what I'm saying is, I think people should be made to pay for music but not blindly and it seems like you really plotted that well with your EP.

[ Eric ]  We didn't know how the world was going react to it before we released it. If it was crap, we wouldn't have felt comfortable charging people. But, luckily everyone loved it and wanted to get it into their iPhones, iTunes, and iPods. Thats when we knew we had to start strategizing our moves. It seems people want something even more when they can't have it too. So yes, I guess it was a slight manipulation. In regards to free music: I think bands should just focus more on their craft of producing good music. It's as simple as that. Social networking, and promoting is really important, but good music will always stand out on it's own. There's so much noise on the internet our brains can't register what is good and bad sometimes from the over-saturation. When we hear something amazing, we'll react to it. Anybody can create an MP3 now with garageband and sell it for $.99. With this over-saturation, true music listeners listen closer to find those gems. I am a vinyl geek, so when I do find a good record streaming on bandcamp or spotify I'll try to buy a hard copy of it. If an artist is creating something beautiful, I will absolutely support them. 

3) Do you have plans from here to release a full length eventually? Is that being discussed or are there songs ready or anything like that?
[Eric] Well, we don't have solid plans for a full length yet. We'd love to record a masterful debut, but it doesn't seem practical at this moment since we don't know what the demand is yet for our music. Label support would probably make an LP happen sooner, but we don't have anyone in mind yet. So right now, singles and EPs seem to be working for us. As for new music: We are songwriters, so we are always trying to create music regardless of whether there is money in the band account or not. It's just what we do. To be more specific, we are demoing about 4 songs now that hint at psych rock, fuzz pop, and some really heavy shoegaze. The songs are awesome and we can't wait to get back into a real studio again. We are aiming to record by the Fall after all our summer shows are fulfilled. We'll probably have a few singles and another EP by end of year. 

4) Have you considered physical releases? I'd really like to buy your music on vinyl. Also, I'd buy it on a cassette and it always seems like I'm the last to know about tapes so if you do release a cassette you better save me one!

[Eric] Yes, of course. We just got our CDs this week. It's a small run of 100. Limited edition Purple Cassettes will also be coming soon. Both will be available on our bandcamp site this summer. A 7" would be awesome, but it's a little pricey for us since we are doing it ourselves. We'll see how things go over the summer, and maybe we'll have one by the fall... hopefully. 
[Abby] The return of cassettes in Brooklyn is baffling to me, but I like it. I sure wish I had kept my Walkman Sport so I could listen to our own release. 

5) You have a female vocalist (Abby Camaya, who also plays keyboards) and maybe it's just because I grew up with grunge and the only really rock band with a front woman was Hole, but do you feel like more and more female vocals are almost becoming as common as male vocals in bands? I think it's partially because of the times (The internet exposes you to so much more music), but it especially does seem like shoegaze attracts the female vocals as well. But also just on a radio scale, or something along those lines, there seem to be more female singers that I like, that are under the rock genre, like Florence + the Machine, Dead Sara, Polly Scattergood, Highasakite, Sleigh Bells, Metric and I could go on...

[Abby] Females have always been around in rock music, but I do suppose many good ones float under the radar or end up with solo careers. I don't think gender is too relevant, it will always just come down to good songwriting, arranging, and singing. I don't listen to a band simply because it has a girl singer in it, I listen because the music kicks ass. I've always loved the mixing of boy and girl harmonies together, it works really well with indie pop and shoegaze.

6) I enjoy the fact that your name is kind of declaration, like you just decided to do it one day. Do you feel like you are loveless, because I really do feel like love is something that you need an extreme amount of faith to believe in?
[Abby] All of us have gone through highs and lows in our personal love lives. What else could be more inspiring as songwriters? Love is everything. Our band name actually took a while to come up with, we had quite the long list until we settled on the "Let's Be" part. I believe another contenders were Let's Be Liars, Let's Be Lions, Let's Be Lonely... All interesting in their own right, but I think our name fits us well.

7) Final thoughts, plugs, etc...??
[Abby] Eric and I both want, and need, to get a dog soon. Then we won't be so loveless.
[ Eric ] Our Official EP release party will be at Muchmores in Williamsburg on 7/10 with this amazing Shoegaze band Sua. We'll have those juicy limited edition purple Cassettes I know you are just dieing to get your hands on. Yes, we'll save you one. 

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