Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted on Mar 12th 2010 8:04PM by Evan C. Jones
Describe your sound in your own words.
Uh...I don't know. Let's skip that and go back to that one.
How did your band form?
The band started when I moved out of my parents house from high school, went to college. That's where I met the drummer. It's just been a bunch of different incarnations over the years, and just finally this past year it's kinda come to full form I guess. It started when we were in college [at Northern Illinois University]. It was a bunch of different lineups and then maybe a year and a half ago me and the drummer Matt Everet moved to Chicago and started the band over. Since then, the sound's been very different and people have been much more responsive to what we've been doing.
What are your musical influences?
I'd say a lot of 90s shoe gaze, a lot of...I don't know, kind of like 60s psych, psych bands. Also, there's kind of a new wave element to it, a little bit, because we grew up on New Order and shit like that. There's also [arpeggio sounding] synthesizers in our live show, aside from a shoe gazy rock format.
Could we revisit the sound question now? How would you describe it?
People have kinda said -I'm quoting other people on this - but they've said it's kinda like a shoe gazer thing with a lot of other elements that are going on with the whole freak folk thing like with Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear. There's some elements to like the whole dream wave, chill wave thing going on...lo-fi electronic recordings.
How did you come up with your band name?
It came to be because before we went to college in DeKalb (Illinois), we were in Chicago. Light pollution, there's a lot of it going on in the big city. It's kind of a literal thing...artificial light preventing you from seeing natural light. When we went to college in Dekalb it was just completely different; it was a really small town. There's nothing but cornfields out there pretty much, except for a very small downtown area. It was way different compared to how we grew up and where we are now.
You spent a lot of time alone in a warehouse writing the record. How'd that come about?
Before we wrote or recorded this album, we rented a warehouse for a year in Dekalb. Me and the guy who engineered the album with me, we went to this place. We lived there and he moved out...I was basically living by myself in this giant warehouse that we rented with the intention of recording in, and we barely recorded in it. I was isolated this whole winter. It was kind of on the outskirts of town and I didn't have a car. I was kinda stuck there almost the entire winter, just recording by myself, writing songs by myself. It was like a very very big space, wide open space. Lots of natural reverb. Couple of old Wurlitzer organs in there. It was just really cool to be totally by myself and writing. Definitely added to the mood of the songs.
What's your biggest vice? Smoking?
Definitely smoking, I need to cut down or quit. Things are getting way more serious with the band. My voice matters now (laughs). I gotta take care of it.
What's in your festival survival kit?
Weed. Is that ok?
Who was your first celeb crush?
Beatles or Stones?
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
We played in DC before. There was a really sweet girl taking pictures, so once we got back to her house, she started talking about how she has this hipster beard fetish. A couple of us slept without our shirts on in this different room and woke up to her hovering over, taking pictures of our chest hair and our faces. You gotta watch out for crazy people that are obsessed with your body hair.
Evan C. Jones is a contributor from Seed.com. Learn how you can contribute here.