Frequent readers of Sonically Awkward will by now notice the band WATERS, as they've been featured numerous times from Song of the Week winners to a new band to watch. I was able to secure an interview in advance of their latest album Something More!, which comes out May 19! You can pre-order the album here, and there's even a chance to get your vinyl autographed if you're quick enough!
To help hold you over until next Friday, check out their debut interview on Sonically Awkward, with questions ranging from their favorite donut to their creative process. Enjoy!
My first question is about you, Van, and the band WATERS. Who does what in the band (instruments, songwriting, etc), and where are you from?
I play guitar and sing. Brian plays lead guitar and sings. Sara plays keys and sings. Greg plays bass and sings. Wales plays drums and is also our reason for existence. It's also his birthday today. Wales and I live in LA, while the rest of the band lives in the Bay Area. We started the band up there.
What artists/bands did you grow up listening to? Do you find yourself realizing how they influenced your current songs after the fact?
Like most people, I went through a lot of different phases. Their influences all come at random times and sprinkles themselves in there. For certain albums, certain influences have more power. For Something More!, I was especially touched by Pinkerton, Dookie, The Verve, and other sonic textures from back then.
What bands currently are you a big fan of? Are there any plans for collaboration on the upcoming album Something More!?
I've been listening to a lot of my friends' bands lately. I'm best friends with Chris from POP ETC, so we work together on stuff all the time. And Jon from that band is directing our music videos. Their newest record is amazing. I've also been listening to Dawes, Springtime Carnivore, Hot Flash Heat Wave, and The French Cassettes.
Time for a couple odd-ball fan questions. What is your favorite Donut - Joe from Wisconsin asks?
Anything from Dynamo Donuts in San Francisco.
Was there a specific 'f*** up' you're referencing in 'Hiccups', or just each and every one?
It would be too hard to pick one because there are just so many, its endless. Its more of a big one-general f*** up. A capital F capital U F*** Up.
Favorite Pizza topping?
Mushrooms on everything.
I loved your music video for 'Hiccups'. Quirky, cringe-inducing fun. Just wanted to toss that in here.
Thanks!!! It was super fun to make.
What's your creative process like for making songs? Meaning, what part seems to come easiest to you and the band - are you usually finishing lyrics first then building a melody around it, or starting with guitar and working backward?
It usually starts with a chord progression, lick, or drum beat/groove. The lyrics are almost always last. Sometimes, there will be a musical idea we base things around, but its rarely the first thing.
What does the summer and rest of 2017 have in store after the album release? Any touring, or is the band focusing on festivals this summer? I can not wait to see you in concert, please make Portland a stop whenever you do announce a tour! Have your manager get on that :)
We're playing in LA on June 8, up in the Bay for BFD Festival on June 10, and then hopefully we'll be exploring more of the country later in the year!