The F4 tornado that cut a path through Moore, Oklahoma on Monday has left at least…
- Posted on Mar 23rd 2012 5:00PM by Marcus J. Moore
The Brooklyn-based grunge quartet is still largely unknown, yet the group's plodding psych-rock has already been featured on Stereogum and scrutinized by Pitchfork, which called the band's psychedelic new album Better Luck Next Life "a sludgy, turgid take on the blues." (Not exactly a compliment, but all press is good press, right?)
And it's been one show after another for the upstart group, so maybe that's why Royal Baths' co-founder Jeremy Cox sounded a little disheveled when he recently spoke with Spinner. The night before, the band played a late-night set at the quaint DC9 nightclub in the nation's capital, where they unloaded a bunch of "loud stuff" onto the crowd.
There is just one predicament, though.
"We're totally out of money and we don't know how we're gonna eat on this tour," Cox says with a dry laugh. "So yeah, that's certainly a challenge."
Cox founded the Royal Baths with vocalist Jigmae Baer in San Francisco amid a formidable indie rock scene that includes notable bands like Exray's, the Fresh and Onlys and Ty Segall, among others. Royal Baths' music is a sullen mixture of Delta blues and noisy psychedelia, resting somewhere between the on-again, off-again pop affinities of the Kills and the muddy drunkenness of the Dead Weather.
That's partly why the band moved from San Francisco to Brooklyn five months ago. "San Francisco is a beautiful city, but we've been there a few years," Cox says. "There's a lot more going on in New York City. It's kinda hard to sell out a venue in San Fran because the scene is so much smaller. I think we're gaining momentum."
Much of that momentum could be due in part to the band's geographical shift from sunny California to gritty New York City, which seems like a better fit for the band's downtrodden aesthetic. Despite the location, Cox says the band will keep making music on their own terms: "We're stubborn regarding what we're gonna write about, and how we're gonna write it."
In between tours, co-founders Cox and Baer work odd jobs between shows, hoping the financial struggles will subside. In the Bay Area, Cox says he once worked at the Hot Cookie in the Castro.
All a part of the indie grind, but things have to get better.
"I hope that will change," Cox says. "I don't know what to expect at this point."
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