Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Mar 7th 2010 11:00AM by Susan Doheny
You recently released your second album, 'Everybody, Come Outside!' How has the reception been?
Very positive, I would say. We had issues with the PR, which flatlined things for a while. So we were slow in getting the word out on the album at first. It all turned out OK. We toured the entire US from New York to Seattle with the band Headlights. Touring helped the album. We did 120 shows, which is about the maximum we could do. We'll be heading to SXSW in March and will tour all over Texas while we are in the state. Then, in April we go on tour with Aloha. T.J. Lipple of Aloha did the mix on 'Everybody, Come Outside!'
Do you have a day job?
Yes, we all work as servers when we're not touring. That's the most flexible job with our touring schedules. We work at coffee shops and cafes.
How would you describe the sound of Pomegranates in your own words?
'Everybody, Come Outside!' has a more traditional indie art-pop sound. Talking Heads is a big influence. We like working with a lot of reverb. We'll start recording a new album in May which will be out in September. The newer sound is more atmospheric, with a strong beat [and] a good groove. It will have more of a dance drone. We're comfortable with letting our ideas breath. There will be more sound synchronization, like in rhythm and blues music from the '60s. The influences here run the gamut from Al Green to Marvin Gaye. This upcoming recording should be more dance and disco-like music. The other part of the album will be more chilled, more laid back -- like a John Lennon, Neil Young sound, or Mark Kozelek from Red House Painters. There will be quiet, pretty acoustic stuff.
Who does the writing of your songs?
One of us might bring an idea to practice, so we groove on it to see where it will go. Some of the ambient, gentler moments get hashed out on our own. For the most part, we all collaborate on the writing.
How did your band form?
Isaac and I were in bands that played together. We talked and decided to start a new one. Joey was a friend of a friend, and so was Dan. We all got together and jammed. The combination worked. Isaac, Joey and I have been together since October of 2006 and did our first show in January of 2007. Dan joined us a month ago. Things are meshing really well. The sound of the upcoming album will be what we have been shooting towards for awhile.
How did you come up with the band's name?
At first we had some pretty bad ideas [laughs]. We decided Pomegranates is a name we could live with for the next 25 years without being embarrassed. Pomegranates, the fruit, have all this great mythology, like the fruit's cleansing nature. Myth has it that you could get rid of poisons or neutralize them by making a concoction from the fruit and brew it as a tea. We were comparing our music to the cleansing properties of the fruit. The name began to resonate for us more and more.
Are you a Beatles or Stones band?
That's a tough question. I'm exactly in the middle. Is that option allowed? The Rolling Stones resonate because of the groove and the energy. There is less refined arrangements. For me, the Beatles have well thought out orchestration. When the Rolling Stones have a good energy and attitude that is fun, they are more tangible to me.
You're going to be at the SXSW. Do you have a festival survival kit?
Yes, we like to use common sense. None of us drink heavily, at least not while touring. We try to buy groceries rather than eating fast foods because it is healthier. Getting sleep is really important. We did a couple of shows last year at SXSW and had a really good time. One of the gigs [was] at the Mohawk.
Do you have a musical guilty pleasure?
Usually if I like something it isn't a guilty pleasure. It just happens to be who I am and what I like. I like to listen to Phantogram, TV on the Radio, Seth Lakeman and Black Mountain. Then there's the new Coldplay album, 'Viva la Vida.' It's awesome, well recorded and has an earnestness that I like.
Has your band had any crazy experiences on tour?
Yes, we've seen some crazy things. In New York we were befriended by people in the fashion industry. They took us to the club Beatrice, where the celebrity types hang out. It was very different for us. Another crazy incident happened in North Carolina. To make a long story short, we were at a beach one night and the police were convinced we had stolen plates on our van. They seized the plates even though the van and the plates were mine. We had to have a special court hearing to prove it. It took two days to sort out.
Do you have a song that you are proud of?
Well, from the first album, I would say it's 'Appreciations.' From the second album, it's 'Beach Comber.' For the upcoming album, the song I like is 'Anywhere You Go.' We don't have a title for the album yet.
Are you going to record a love song?
Yes, there will definitely be love songs on the new album. We all have girlfriends now. We had love songs on the first and second albums but they were more familial, platonic love songs.
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