Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Sisters Of Your Sunshine Vapor: album review and interview
Sisters of Your Sunshine Vapor: this Detroit band's self-titled album is seriously deserving of more than just a listen or two. It is one of those albums where, the more you listen, the more you hear, and the more you are absorbed, and the more you are amazed. The first influences I hear are the grittiness of The Black Angels, and the song structure similar in complexity to B.R.M.C.-era Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. But these songs the Sisters have created.....each one slams right into the next one, the momentum pushing right through you like a tornado....
Lord Is My Gun is a gritty homage to the tough streets. Victims of Momentum warns you with the title, get the hell outta the way. Slow Suicide, haunting, engaging on so many different levels: the vocals, the superb drumming, the guitar work....this song grips you tightly. All You Lovers, one of my personal favorites, how can I not love this song: sexy swagger, shameless, dirty guitar.....what's the name of this blog again? Yeah, DIRTY SEXY KARMA. Yeah. Spaceman Blues, that song is a trip I do NOT wanna get off. Another huge highlight of this album, Spaceman Blues is just one immense swirl of a song, a total trip to the outer limits that folds back in on itself to swallow you whole. My third favorite song, Two Thousand Nine, more blow-your-mind sexy psychedelic swagger: meet you in the back room? Um, YES. But this song ends too soon. At The Gates utilizes some phenomenal drumming behind a guitar part that is pure psychedelia.
Sean sings and plays guitar, Eric plays bass and does backing vocals, and Rick plays drums for Sisters of Your Sunshine Vapor. Time to get to know them a bit better by hearing it from the band themselves:
How did you three hook up and form a band? You had a former name and sound, correct?
Rick: Nobody in the band knew each other before we started playing music together. Eric and Sean met through email and social networking. They hooked up with their original drummer Scotty through the same method. However, things didn't work out with Scotty and they were without a drummer for a few months until they met me at a dance party in Ann Arbor called The Bang!. They asked me if I played drums and if I wanted to try out for the band and the rest is history.
We were originally called SikSik Nation the music was fuzzed out garage rock with some psych elements. We released one full length and an EP under that name after switching to a much more psychedelic sound we decided a name change was appropriate.
Are you doing this all yourselves, the producing and recording of your music?
Rick: We built and maintain our own studio. We did the recording and production ourselves; we even screen print our own record sleeves and t-shirts.
How is the scene in Detroit? I am not too familiar with it, so maybe you can tell me a bit about what it's like being serious musicians there?
Sean: Well Detroit seems to be heavily submerged in the pop scene as of now- we've poked through the water a bit as a psych band and turned a few heads, but as a whole the poppy-er outfits seems to get the most attention.
Where do you get your ideas from to make your music? I hear some seriousness in a lot of your songs, but I also hear some raunchiness here and there, which adds to the sheer enjoyment of your sound.
Sean: Society? or lack there of- music is one of the few things I actually take seriously in life- the raunchiness just come from humanity.
What artists do you feel influence you?
Rick: We have a lot of influences that vary from member to member. Some of the bands we share in common are Joy Division, Spaceman 3, The Doors, and The Velvet Underground. We also like plenty of modern acts like Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, The Brian Jonestown Massacre and The Black Angels (ha ha).
What gear do you use? Ever blow out an amp??
Rick: Ah, some secrets are meant to be kept- but orange amps, lots of delay, theremins, bows, teisco spectrum guitars, Vox guitars, burns guitars, Ludwig vistalite drums- and a mass amount of other unconventional things. No way: amps are way too expensive to blow out!
Do you have a second album in you, as Sisters? More ideas for great songs?
Rick: We are a very prolific act; we will continue to make albums until it is no longer enjoyable. As of right now we have a handful of songs in production and hope to have another release this year.
Since I missed you in NY recently, I have been watching videos, as you guys are posting fantastic video diaries and films of your performances. Do you like the touring aspect of being in a band?
Rick: As a band we are making the transition from being a “local” act and moving around the country a little more. You feel like you get more accomplished when you play out of state and the experience is much more enriching. We hope to play at least 50 shows across the country this year. We have been experimenting with keeping video journals of our exploits, and so far it has been a pretty entertaining exercise.
When asked what he would like from music fans, Rick says:(We would like people to) download our record and tell us what you think. Some people think that bands only offer their albums for free because they are not confident in their product. That is complete bullshit. This record sounds way fucking better than anything we have ever paid for and we are giving it for free because we don’t care about money. We want people to hear what we have created and hopefully enjoy the outcome. Nothing in this band has been outsourced; everything from the recording to the merchandise has been done by the band. You will not be disappointed in our DIY efforts. If you are, then you have spent $0, so who cares?
The attention to detail in the songs that Sisters of Your Sunshine Vapor play is apparent upon first listen, but to REALLY hear these songs, keep listening. They become an alternate reality. Their vibe sinks into you completely. This band has got the talent and the confidence to shake things up. They've got ME shaken up, that's for certain. These guys are doing it for all the right reasons. We love that mind-set around here.
Thanks to the band, for taking time to do this interview for me. I love them dearly for it.