The Prids: What Are You Listening To?
When The Prids toured with Built to Spill in 2006, this song was a new one that they were working on in soundcheck each night. On this tour, I found out that one of my best friends had terminal cancer. It was a pretty long tour and so I shared this news with my tourmates since I was devastated. The lyrics relate a lot to my experience in losing my dear friend, Damian Ramsey. I cry every time I hear it, but it keeps the memory of my friend alive and, for that, I am forever grateful.
The Dabbers’ I Am Alien Now album is one of my most played records. It’s super minimal with just distorted bass, drums and vocals. I take super long walks daily and if I want to be transported out of my head, this is what I play. There’s just something about it that makes me feel like I’m in crazy art house film. I think I love it for the fact that I can put it on and it will always put me in a good mood. That’s a huge accomplishment for any musician.
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, “Contender”
I’m a big nerd for lyrics. “But you never were/You never were a contender” always broke my heart. I met Kip Berman in the early 00′s in Portland. He was in a band called Jackie that we really liked and he would come to parties at our bandhouse. Kip is one of the most humble, caring people I have ever met and super supportive of anything I’ve ever done creatively. He’s also hilarious. One of my favorite memories is him showing up to a party and naming our house “Castle Sadmore.” To this day, he is always teasing us about being sad, or about how we’re aging goths. I know when he reads this he’s going to think “Yeah, OF COURSE, that’s your favorite lyric!”
This is a pretty brutal break up song. Even though I’ve been in the same relationship for 10 years, who can’t relate to heartbreak? I’m a super social person, always making new friends and I fall in love with new people all the time. I remember the first time I saw Adam Dishart walk across the venue we were playing in San Francisco; he was really striking with huge hair, all black clothes. He looked like a comic book character come to life. We played many shows with Catholic Comb and I was sad when they broke up, but Adam continues to write music equally as brilliant under the name Books on Fate.
A Place To Bury Strangers, “Another Step Away”
The first time we played with APTBS they were a new band. 2003, I think? So, my favorite album of theirs’ is the first because it reminds me of being a kid on tour 15+ weeks a year. Somewhere, I have a video tape of that first show we played in Brooklyn together. Oliver Ackermann came up with the idea to have bands cover our songs when we rolled our tour van in 2008, to help replace the gear we lost. He did a cover of our song ‘The Problem,’ which you can find on Bandcamp.
The Faint, “Damage Control”
When we started out, we spent a year and a half in Lincoln, Nebraska and were a part of the Lincoln/Omaha scenes. One evening in 1998, I got a call from this guy named Todd Fink (on the landline!) and he said, “Hey, I hear you have synths in your band and you guys wear black… I think we should play together.” And we did. The punks didn’t look too fondly on synthesizers at the time, which is really funny to me now when I think about how having a keyboard in your band made you “uncool”. I still listen to everything Todd puts out, and I am continually impressed. His music transports me back to being 20 years old, when every experience was new and exciting. That is a gift!
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