Interview with The Chain Gang Of 1974

28 Sep

Teenage Vulture: Who does the current line-up of TCGO1974 consist of?

TCGO1974: My current live line-up consists of Brandon Anamier on drums, Jacob Bond on guitar/keys/vocals, and a revolving cast of people on the bass/keys/vocals.

How did you find your current live band, did it come together naturally or how did it happen?

Brandon Anamier has been playing drums for me for the last 3 1/2 years.  He’s definitely a trooper for sticking it out for so long.  I asked Jacob Bond to join about 6 months ago due to how much I respect him as a person and a musician.  I’ve had bad luck keeping a steady bass player, but I’ll hopefully find someone who wants to live on the road.

How do you feel about the length of time it’s taken for your music to catch on and really take off?

I still don’t really feel that my music has caught on.  I do believe that Wayward Fire is a record that some people might not be ready for.  Not due to me thinking it’s a groundbreaking album of any sorts, because it’s not.  But I do feel that no one is putting out music like this today.  It might be something that people aren’t wanting.  Only time will tell.

I’d say that your music has caught on at least a somewhat, they don’t just let anybody play on national TV (The daily habit) and have a slot at Lollapalooza, wouldn’t you say?

I’ve definitely been blessed.  It’s been quite overwhelming at times to see the praise my music has received.  I can only hope it continues to go up instead of down.

How does it feel to play to huge crowds like at Lollapalooza?

Lollapalooza was an exception.  It was a very beautiful moment to present the music I have created to such a large audience.  I definitely won’t ever forget that day.  I enjoy playing in small clubs, which is where this band is right now.  I think we’ll be a club band for quite sometime.  I’m okay with that.

You say you’re a “club band,” but you recently played a show at Red Rocks, being a former Coloradan, was that something you’ve dreamt about doing?

To be honest, I didn’t think of it as a huge deal.  Colorado was never a place I was proud of being from.  I viewed that Red Rocks show as just another gig.  And since it was for Film On The Rocks, I doubt people even gave a shit about what we were doing on stage.  Maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe not.

Who were you most listening to while recording Wayward Fire?

During the recording process of Wayward Fire, there was a lot of Talking Heads, The Stills, Simple Minds and Tears For Fears being played around.  Some of those bands still influence me, some don’t.

How did you decide which songs from White Guts went onto Wayward Fire and which ones to leave off?

The songs that weren’t personal to me were let go.  Wayward Fire is an album about a specific person.  A girl who inspired me to write about heartbreak.  The record is for people with broken hearts.  The tracks that made it over were the ones that were written about this person.  So to me, it all made sense.  To some critics, they think that the album is inconsistent.  But that’s only based off sound.  When it comes to the lyrical content, I couldn’t disagree with them more.

Do you think people who aren’t going through heartbreak would still be able to relate to the album?

I do.  Everyone has gone through loss in their lives at some point, so it can relate to them in any way.  I didn’t set out to write an album about heartbreak.  I was just heartbroken and the songs came out.  I still find myself writing songs about this girl, so hopefully the pain ends up being beneficial.

Considering your sound, is it safe to say that the ’80s is your favorite era of music?

There’s something very special about that era.  Not just with the music, buy also with film, fashion, and attitude.  I adore everything from the 90’s, as well.  Nostalgia is the most addicting drug.

Who are some of your favorite ’80s band?

Bands from that time that truly inspire me are Echo And The Bunnymen, Talk Talk, Tears For Fears, Comsat Angels, The Jesus And Mary Chain, Psychedelic Furs.  The list goes on and on.

What albums are you digging that came out this year?

My favorite albums of the year so far are The Horrors’ Skying, Jack Ladder’s Hurtsville, and Dawes’ Nothing Is Wrong.  All three of those records are on constant rotation.

What level of success do you aspire to reach or have you already reached that level?

I’m nowhere close to where I want to be.  I’m very happy with what I’ve accomplished in these 4 1/2 years, especially within the last year.  But I haven’t created greatness yet.  That’s something I would like to do in the very near future.

What is greatness to you?

Greatness to me is creating an album that someone will want to listen to until the day they die.

The Chain Gang of 1974′s album Wayward Fire is out now on Modern Art. Download the track “Undercover” from it below and purchase the full album here.

mp3: The Chain Gang Of 1974 – “Undercover”


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