Monday, March 28, 2016

Wailin Storms Interview

1.       Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?

We recently became truckers and are looking for a good meth contact. Seriously though, we just drove to and from Austin all the way from North Carolina in 2 days to play a few showcases at SXSW. We also have an April tour coming up with “The Powder Room” (from Athens) and are looking into recording some new songs by this summer hopefully.

2.       A few months back you had released your first full length, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the ep's you had released in the past?

Our previous EP “Shiver” was much more stripped down and straight forward since it was a 3 piece. With the most recent full length our sound became much fuller and dynamic with the addition of another guitarist. That said we still tried to keep things sparse and minimal on “One foot in the flesh grave,” similar to previous recordings.

3.       What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?

 Our songs revolve around various subjects and will probably sound like a drug commercial at first: coping with death, depression, love, heartbreak, politics, surrealism, and Texas folklore.  For example “Down in South Texas” is based on an old Texas/Mexican folktale of “La Llorona” or “The Weeping Woman.”  There are a few versions of this story but the one I heard when growing up was that a young woman, with two children, falls in love with a handsome young man. But like most young men, he’s not ready to have kids. So the woman, wanting to be with him, takes her children to the beach one day, stabs them both, and drowns them in the ocean (or river, depending on where the listener grew up). She then goes to her lover’s door covered in blood and tells him what she’s done for love, but her new love wants nothing to do with her and turns her away. She soon realizes what she’s done for love and kills herself by walking into the ocean. When she gets to heaven, the angels refuse to let her inside until she can find her children’s bones in the ocean. They also curse her with the head of horse for committing an unspeakable sin. The weeping woman realizes that retrieving her dead children’s bones would be impossible to find in the ocean so she roams around the beach/shores of the Gulf of Mexico looking for other children to drown to use their bones for entry into heaven. Much like a Greek siren she wails and draws concerned victims in with her moan.

 Parents would tell this classic bedtime story kids to scare them from sneaking out late at night and swimming in the ocean after dark. As a teen, I used to sneak out past dark to go surfing during a full moon but never ran into La Llorona, just the occasional shark.

4.       What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Wailin Storms'?

It’s a moniker mostly based on the singer’s last name “Storms,” that combined with the boisterous sound that’s made when singing or “Wailing.” But the spelling of “Wailin” is a bit of a homage to greats like: Screamin Jay Hopkins, Lightnin Hopkins, and Howlin Wolf. 

5.       Originally the band was from Texas but relocated to North Carolina, what was the cause of the move?

Well the band started in Texas as a really stripped down project for a year or so in the mid 2000’s. There were a few moves before then and various line-up changes depending on location at the time. But the current line-up formed in North Carolina after the founder/singer moved from NYC to NC with his ex-girlfriend who found a job in North Carolina. Touring seemed easier for the band outside of NYC and the band had played Raleigh during a previous tour. Seemed like either Texas or somewhere in the southern US was where our music belonged.

6.       What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?

There’s been quite a few awesome shows, some recent and some not so recent. But one recent show in Indianapolis which coincidentally and unfortunately happened to be “We Are Hex’” last show was really memorable. It was at this dive bar called State Street Pub and we were on day 8 or so of our tour and the owner and bartender of the place was really welcoming. From the outside this was one of the smallest places we had played in a while but it was really cool inside with tons of priceless punk posters from enviable gigs in the area. “We Are Hex” blew us away and were phenomenal live, as we imagined they might be. The crowd was super pumped for us too and the two bands that night meshed really well. It just felt like the ideal show: setting, energy, and line-up wise.

As for stage performance we try to match the music and actually move around. We tend to be high energy when the song calls for it.

7.       Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?

Upcoming shows and tours

4/3/16 // Valient Thor, Demon Eye, Bitter Resolve// The Ritz - Raleigh, NC

4/20/16// Shallows, Powder Room, Wailin Storms // Odditorium - Asheville, NC

4/21/16 // Power Take Off, Powder Room, Wailin Storms // The Station - Charlotte, NC

4/22/16 // SOON, Powder Room, Wailin Storms // Nightlight - Chapel Hill, NC

4/23/16 // Youth League, Powder Room, Wailin Storms // Reggies - Wilmington, NC

4/24/16 // Magnus Lush, Manzara, Wailin Storms // Banditos -Richmond, VA

8.       On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your recordings by fans of underground music?

We’re noticing a lot of new fans all over the US and in Europe, particularly in Poland, France, Italy, and Portugal. There has been some talk of touring around Europe.

9.       Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

Lately we’ve been gravitating towards making slower songs that have more space and dynamics. We like to follow our gut when making new songs and try not to over complicate things too much to avoid making things too polished.

10.   What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

As a band we’re into a bunch of different bands and musical styles. Here’s a few influential bands: Laughing Hyenas, Hammerhead, Scratch Acid, Alan Lomax’ field recordings, Bohren and Der Club of Gore, PJ Harvey, and Birthday Party. Nowadays the band’s been listening to: This Heat, Sweet Cobra, Unwound, DIIV, Tenement, Kowloon, hymns by “Old Regular Baptists,” and Creepoid.

11.   What are some of your non musical interests?

Our drummer is obsessed with the Redskins football team. Our bassist likes building non-lethal shit and we think is related to Macgyver. Our guitarist is into smoking and drinking whiskey and our singer likes to draws epic whale battles.

12.   Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Go vote

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