Erika Goldring, Getty Images The four members of Little Big Town will…
- Posted on Mar 15th 2010 9:33PM by Rachel Brodsky
How would you describe your sound in your own words?
Um, yikes! [laughs] Oh, you're going to start off with "yikes." Like, spastic energy and melodic songs is kind of like what the goal is. Like, as energetic as possible but completely memorable with melody. That's the goal, anyway.
How did your band form?
The band formed in Australia. We had a tour with this other band from Brooklyn actually, called Japanther. Then we were just like, f*ck it, all we really want to do is play music. We were in Sydney at the time. We're not originally from Sydney, we're originally from this place called the Gold Coast. It's this surfing-based sort of retiree -- Miami, Florida, I guess would be the analogy you would use. Y'know, something completely boring and devoid of anything inspirational. So we kind of just decided to move to Sydney, which is a whole lot better. But it was still kind of playing the same three or four clubs each night. So we said f*ck it, let's just move. So we saved up money and moved [to Brooklyn]. And we've been touring ever since. So it was a pretty naive process. But I don't think there was anything more to it than just doing it.
What are your musical influences?
I listened to a lot of different stuff. But I guess the influences for the band would be like, punk rock. Mostly the energetic 80s hardcore...and I guess the live show is kind of directed towards that. But we also listen to as much dance music and hip-hop as much as punk rock, really. We all grew up kind of writing dance music and kind of moved towards playing in bands as well. So that element was always there. And it's as much with with hip hop as well -- that's why in the live show we sample a lot of hip hop in-between the tracks. So it's kind of like this clusterf*ck of all that sort of stuff, really, kind of like vomited out what the Death Set is, maybe.
How'd you end up coming up with the name Death Set?
In the beginning we just wanted to be this badass kind of like gang sort of name. Something completely retarded. But in actuality, it wasn't really that at all because we were these two little Australian dudes bouncing around to Casio beats. When I come to think about it, I think about The Death Set as a positive name, I think it's something we've all got in common. And we're all set for, except why not make the most of what we're doing right now? So that's how I think of it more these days than just a little ridiculous little gang name. I just think that band names are so -- in a sense the band puts so much importance on them. But you can call a band anything and in the end, people will associate the band to that name. Like, I don't think of a surfer's butthole when I think of the Butthole Surfers. So I think that once people know what the band's about, the name seems less important.
What's in your festival survival kit?
We usually just tour and don't even book anything or even know where we're staying. But I think I'm actually going to use the Internet for booking and be a bit more prepared this time. I dunno, for the last couple of tours, Jose Cuervo has been a good little companion. Jose seems to go well with the first batch of sunshine that we're seen all year. [laughs] So Jose was a good friend. I think what I love about SXSW is that there's so much sh*t going on that you're like "Oh sh*t what should I see? Metallica or Prince? And you just end up drinking margaritas instead. I just love the looseness of it all. We pretty much just go down there with minimal plans. But this year, we're trying not to play as much and have a bit more fun, which I think was a FAIL in the last few years. I always say that and it's like "holy sh*t! We've got 14 shows in 14 days!" and it just ends up being a FAIL 'cause it's too tiring. So this year, I just want to play a few good shows and see a few good shows. And have fun.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
[Laughs] I'm trying to think if I had some babe pinned up on my wall when I was a teenager. I think I had just like, pictures of surfing dudes.... which sounds a bit suspicious, doesn't it? What babe did I have up on my wall? Celebrity crush...d'know know what, all I can think of is Kylie Minogue. And I didn't even have a crush on her! I really didn't have a crush on her, I don't know why that's popping into my head. I did have a crush on Kathleen Hannigan in that Sonic Youth video. I dunno, I'm always a fan of less hot girls holding instruments than Kylie Minogue, if that makes sense.
What is your musical guilty pleasure?
I mean, people are probably not going understand this coming from a punk rock band, but I really really love minimal electronic music. When we were France last time, we had two weeks off and lost our shit in all these great French minimal clubs. We really love minimal techno.
What is the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
One time we were on this tour with Girl Talk and we were in this van that we bought for $100. It was called "Cuaney Cannons" and I'm not even sure what "Cuaney Cannons" means... we were guessing it was something in Spanish, meaning "yo we have really big guns" or some shit. Anyway we were on tour in Cuaney Cannons in a Red State, up in the Midwest. Anyway we were tour with this hip-hop act called CX Kidtronik. So in the van our driver was the little Columbian kid and we're two Australians and our drummer is Panamanian, and there's this hip-hop act whose this French dude, and an American dude with a really big Mohawk, and it's just the most ridiculous group of people you could ever imagine in a band. So we're stopping off at some service station. And of course, the woman thinks we have guns. So we get pulled over at the side of the road. And I think it was about 20 people pointing assault rifles at us. So we had to get out of the van and were circled by a crew of people with actual assault rifles. And we had to get on the ground, and they searched the van and we went to jail. And then we got out and we still made the show!
Sounds just like what happened to the Brian Jonestown Massacre down south!
Yeah! Imagine the Brian Jonestown Massacre (I know exactly what you're talking about) except these guys had actual assault weapons. Like, "the war on terrorism, Iraqi, let's show every other country what we've got." Let's just say I felt like an invading country, because that sh*t was scary as f*ck.
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