What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
Ian- I think the freedom to express your deepest inner thoughts and feelings is what drew us to the lifestyle of music and being in a band, so much so that it’s difficult to function without regular exercise in the craft. There is a real bond or a screaming warning that song writing, recording and touring expose between people. Drew and I saw each other from afar and after slowly getting to know each other decided that we shared a sympathetic approach to expressing ourselves in music. It’s weird, exhausting, difficult to navigate and often the best times of our lives.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
Ian- ”Emotional Whatever Things” was kind of us rebelling against ourselves. I can be a temperamental person in my ways and often the world around me feels repetitive and dull. The band needed a new direction, a harder approach cause we felt trapped in our own misguided ways as men, as friends, as lovers, as musicians, and speaking for myself here, as a son and a brother to my family. EWT is sort of a jab at myself and urging us to move forward.
There will be two more songs released exclusively with the ” Emotional Whatever Things ” cassette through Den Tapes. Drew was really excited to re record on older song I did before he joined the band and we decided to throw on a cover of one of my favorite PJ Harvey songs as a b side. We want to share with our fans a little bit of the past and how its changed as well as a part of where we are coming from outside our poorly composed fuzz rock.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
Ian – We’ve been really inspired by our friends in a band A Deer A Horse form Brooklyn. Music we both connect with and the are such road warriors. Getting to experience how they work and sharing stories together have validated and nurtured our band life quite a bit. We defiantly need to work our viability as touring artists and when we have a down to earth example to reference it just makes it that much easier.
We’ve been listening to a lot of METZ and Pissed Jeans together recently that have sunk into our sound for sure. Films really inspire us too, Sci-fi and fantasy seems to fit with heavy music in a lot of ways.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
Ian – We make an effort to surprise listeners with our arrangements and composition choices. It’s one of the few tools we are left with as a two piece and I think that gives us an edge over other heavy rock or punk bands with three or five members. Each verse or bridge has to be very intentional, and we don’t like to repeat anything the same way twice. Maybe that works against us as most music that sees popular appeal is very monotonous. What we’ve seen out of our work are songs that constantly develop as they go, each one a story or a statement that has subtle and dramatic layers without drowning out the melody or root of the music’s moment.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
This question is impossible but I wouldn’t say no to these options off the top of my head.
Movies: Velvet Goldmine, Princess Mononoke, Blade Runner.
Books: LoveDeath by Dan Simmons, Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh, The Dispossessed by Ursula K. La Guin
Albums: “Red Medicine” by Fugazi, “Wonderful Rainbow” by Lightning Bolt, “Rid Of Me” by PJ Harvey
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
Ian- I prefer live performance for sure. Recordings to me are like a portrait of life. meant to give you maybe the best example of a song but the spirit of music lives in the real time communication between musician and audience. Overall both have a place and I understand that. Perhaps in the coming years I’ll sway more in the direction of studio work.
DREW: As a drummer that’s hard to answer. It sways back and forth depending on my mood….recording drums is such a complex endeavor that it feels like a rare treat every time I get to do it. The pressure of limited time and budget, combined with the inspiration of finally hearing what my parts sound like to others, is a wholly unique experience and I live for it. Having said that, NOTHING can replace the high of being on stage in the moment of a live performance…the adrenaline, nerves, excitement and fear combine into something that either destroys or transforms you, every time. It’s so emotional and visceral that I have to go find a silent, dark corner somewhere afterwards to recenter myself before I can talk to anyone.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
Ian- Got to meet and play a show with Grammy winning drummer Thomas Pridgen in his band after The Mars Volta. Booked a whole tour around this one gig in San Francisco we got with his band and the show was a total bust. huge room and maybe 30 people were there! Hahaha. It sorta keyed me into a new look at success and how no one event is measurable against a life of work. I took some time off when I got back and started Dirty Dirty a few months later.
DREW: Several years back I was on tour with a pop band. One of our gigs took place at Universal Studios, in one of the bars just outside the gates. We showed up and were informed the volume couldn’t peak above 90 db, and we’d be shut off mid-song if we were too loud. The sound tech spent our whole gig holding a decibel meter up and would flash a giant red “X” if we needed to quiet down (keep in mind right in front of the stage was a mechanical bull with a crowd of drunks louder than us riding it all night, so I’m not sure what the concern was). The whole thing was surreal, like a bad scene from a Coen Brothers movie.
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
Ian- “Monochromatic Love” is a song we have finished but it’s not on any released material yet. it’s a few years old even but stills holds a very special place in my hearts. Defiantly one of our most avant-garde numbers as it swings between a driving arpeggio and dark, doomy progressions around these lyrics about accepting ones loneliness. I find it represents feelings I’ve had throughout my life.
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
Ian- Our future plans involve spending some time in Austin to explore a new scene and maybe meet more artists and bands, as well as begin writing for another record. We are getting more invested in our on stage appearances and showmanship as we aim to make each show a surprise in some way with outfits or new set arrangements. We are really excited to finally share what we’ve been working on in studio beyond “Emotional Whatever Things” and the album we tracked along with it, but also the world keeps turning and our experience in it bloom new perspectives, and hopefully, wiser and more meaningful art. I’m also working on a new project with some friends from other bands around Seattle. Working with them has done a lot for me in terms of getting out of old habits as a song writer. I can’t wait to see how that is going to effect the future of Dirty Dirty.
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
Q: What’s something you would go back and tell your younger self based on what you’ve learned through these years of your “career”?
A: DREW: Don’t waste your time on people who don’t share your drive and vision. At the end of the day some of those people are going to want less (or possibly more) out of this journey than you do. A band is like a relationship and you don’t owe anyone your loyalty who isn’t in it with you 100%. Trust your instincts. No matter what path you take, people will give you unasked for advice, criticism and negativity. Pay it no mind, focus on you and keep moving forward. You’re GOING to fail, repeatedly…KEEP. GOING. The most growth I’ve experienced as an artist has come from my failures.
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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