quinta-feira, 15 de janeiro de 2015

Perfect From Now On with Balms - An Interview

Dreampop em sua melhor expressão, cortesia do Balms e seu maravilhoso Ep homônimo lançado no final do ano passado.

Balms o Ep, mergulha profundamente nos sonhos e de forma bucólica nos presenteia com um punhado de doces e cândidas viagens a paisagens iluminadas e cintilantes. Um delicioso passeio com nuances de pós punk, shoegazer sempre sonhador.

A audição eleva o bem estar. Um trabalho valioso do Balms.

***** Interview with Balms *****
Q. When did Balms start, tell us about the history...
Jared: John, Michael, and I actually all met in high school. I lost touch with John after high school but Michael and I kept playing in bands together. I moved to San Francisco and happened to run into John at a mexican restaurant where he was playing a show with his solo project, Chaka. We got to talking and at the time I was really into the idea of starting a fuzzy, short song pop project (think Weezer's Pinkerton and the Pixies). So we started jamming and writing songs.

Q: Who are your influences?
Jared: Elliott Smith and Nick Drake are a huge influence for me lyrically, vibe-wise, and as a songwriter. I still learn a lot from them. I also feel a lot of power from the Icelandic songwriters, most notably Sigur Ros and Bjork. Most of the inspiration for my own songs comes from interactions with people in my life: friends, lovers, family, acquaintances.

John: Beach House is a band I think of often when talking about ourselves, I think I just like how they make pop songs that sound so huge, from repetition and layering, which is something we try to do. I also like the drum machines they use, and think about my own drumming like I'm putting together a beat using a sequencer, with really simple rhythms, at least for some of our songs.

Q. Make a list of 5 albums of all time…

Jared: Elliott Smith - "s/t", Built to Spill - "Perfect From Now On", Modest Mouse - "Building Something Out Of Nothing", The Beatles "Abbey Road", Neil Young "Live at Massey Hall 1971".

John: Beck´s "Odelay" "The Velvet Underground & Nico." Deerhunter's "Halcyon Digest" and "Microcastle." Deerhoof's "The Runners Four."

Q. How do you feel playing live?
Jared: Peforming is really special and fun, and I feel lucky to be able to do it at all, and that people are listen and watch - it feels very exciting, and spastic.

John: I love playing drums! It's nice to be able to sit down for the whole show, too.

Q. How do you describe Balms' sound?
Jared: Quiet/Loud, Groovy, Dreamare.

Q: Tell us about the process of recording the songs?
Jared: We recorded and mixed our EP as well as some singles before it ourselves at Johns house. We worked really hard to make the songs sound as good to us as we could, and released them when we felt they reached that level. It took most of the year and we are really happy with how they turned out - we've been getting a great response from our friends and listeners.

John: Our favorite process, which we used for recording several songs, is laying down drums first during a live instrumental take, but with only the drums miked and the guitar and bass volumes very low, so that you can hear them in the drum tracks and they give a sort of unique ambiance in the end product. It's a very lo-fi and unprofessional method I think, and it's kind of dangerous when mixing the drums with those sounds in the background but it usually turns out pretty cool. Then we overdub bass, guitars and vocals. We've also done live takes with all instruments miked. For the EP I think we mostly laid down drums by themselves first, then overdubbed everything else.

Q. Which new bands do you recommend
John: I've been listening to a lot of Parquet Courts lately. Their album "Sunbathing Animal" is kind of an instant classic to me. It's so much fun, but in a really cerebral, calculated way. They put a lot of different styles and interesting sounds in there without it seeming like it. And everyone should listen to more of The Growlers in my opinion. They have a new album "Chinese Fountain" that's beautiful, but I think their earlier albums might be their best so far, like "Hung at Heart" and "Gilded Pleasures."

Q: Which bands would you love to make a cover version of?
Jared: Right now, we play two covers: Echo & The Bunnymen's "Killing Moon" and Pixies' "Gouge Away"

John: I always thought Sonic Youth's "Tunic (Song For Karen)" would make a really epic cover for us.

Q: What´s the plan for the future....
Jared: In 2015, we want to tour and get our music out there as much as possible, then write new material for our next release.

John: We are pressing our EP onto clear 12" vinyl and releasing it in March.

Q: Any parting words?
Jared: Thank you for listening, you can stream and purchase our EP here: balms.bandcamp.com