atj interview :: ringo deathstarr

ATJ presents RINGO DEATHSTARR, Wednesday, October 22, 2008, for After the Jump’s CMJ Showcase at the Knitting Factory NYC, performing at 12AM inside the Tap Room, along with Best Friends Forever, the Depreciation Guild, My Teenage Stride, A Sunny Day in Glasgow & the Pains of Being Pure at Heart.

Listen :: Swirly

MIA: Musically, how did the band form, what past experiences do you carry with you?

The band was formed by me, Elliott, because I was a drummer for 9 years and wanted to play guitar. I started writing songs like “some kind of sad” and “summer time” while I played drums in this band called VERY ULTRA, but they didn’t want to play them. Next I played drums for Young Heart Attack and IV Thieves before I really buckled down and got serious about Ringo Deathstarr. I recorded the EP myself except for the lead guitar parts and 2 drum tracks. Also, I had to find the right people that would be serious too, so after a dozen line-up changes, we finally came together a couple of months just before the EP was released.

MIA: Describe the feeling of living and making music in your city, feel free to share a memory or a certain place that makes you feel like home.

I moved to Austin for music, but sometimes it feels like the hollywood of music and everyone is overwhelmed by the amount of bands there are. Emos is our favorite place to play right now; the people that run the place are cool to us.

MIA: Do you enjoy to perform live? How does the band like to get ready and is there a favorite song that you like to play for your audience?

We do enjoy playing live, but we need more equipment! we practice throughout the week in a tiny room where you can never hear the vocals. I don’t really have a favorite song to play as I like them all!

MIA: What has been the most impacting compliment, or criticism, your band has ever received?

Whenever people actually say, they like our band.

MIA: Within your songwriting, is there some type of element that has brought about a certain mood in yr writing, making you feel more/less different than when you started? How long has the recording process taken to complete your album and to finally believe that it’s ready?

When I write songs I just try and make the guitar sound cool first of all. Usually, I try to play the guitar in the dark with just a red light on and drink a lot of beer. That sets my mood. In the studio, the time it takes is directly related to the budget. So, we may go weeks or months before a song is finished in the studio. Most of this time is mixing, which is done a few hours here, a few hours there, weeks apart sometimes, but its the only way we can work right now, so somebody should give us money!

MIA: Name a visual artist or piece of work that inspires you.

I saw some amazing painting in a shop in Soho but it didn’t have any name on it or anything. It was just bright vivid colors, something that looked like the way I imagine how I want to sound.

MIA: Please share a mixtape with a theme of your choice.


Two Princes by Spin Doctors
Cantaloop by Us3
Informer by Snow
Here Comes the Hot Stepper by Ini Kamoze
New Age Girl by Dead Eye Dick

4 Responses