SHORT AND SWEET: WMSE TALKS TO TWIN PEAKS
POSTED:: September 20, 2019
Interviews, Short And Sweet (Q&A's)
FILED UNDER:: Interviews, Short And Sweet (Q&A's)
Twin Peaks made a big name for themselves when they first set themselves on the Midwest music scene back in 2010. The indie rock band from Chicago gravitated towards the gratifying combo of solid and upbeat records paired with stellar and slightly wild live shows and instantly won themselves some ardent fans and solidified their place in the growing bounds of the genre.
The band paid Milwaukee a visit last night at Turner Hall Ballroom, leading up to a couple more Midwest dates before they venture off to Europe. And while we tried to snag some time with them before their Milwaukee date, timing proved tricky so we’re checking in with Twin Peaks’ Cadien Lake James a bit after the fact. Read on, below and look for an updated link with photos from their Milwaukee show and catch the band’s latest album on the WMSE airwaves!
For your newest, Lookout Low, you snagged Ethan Johns, a British producer (Paul McCartney, U2, etc.) – what specifically was it about Johns’ work that made him perfect for your latest songs?
We just wanted to capture something more organic/raw/honest…however you want to mince it. It seemed like doing the recording live, as Ethan does exclusively, was going to be a good challenge and help us achieve something more real.
What was that experience like for all of you, collectively (recording out of the States)? Is it easier or harder to focus when you’re out of your element and normal environment?
We similarly did Down In Heaven in a rural location and loved getting out of the city. I think it’s good for us to have less distraction when we’re making records. Personally, I’d forget we were across the sea because we weren’t interacting with people outside the insular process really at all.
You added backing vocals from Chicago’s OHMME – did you let them creatively direct their additions or did you have a specific sound in mind for them?
We give them a bit of direction usually, but then once they’re comfortable with what’s going on in a song they start coming up with all sorts of other harmonies and ways to approach it. They’re such talented musicians it’s an insane pleasure to work with them.
A few reviews are in and there are a lot of comments on how you are all “grown up” and that you’re all obviously into the Grateful Dead. There is quite a difference in sound from say, 2014’s Wild Onion. What’s caused you all to mellow out so noticeably (and unapologetically, it seems)?
Five years! A lot changes. Just following the music where it takes us.
What will your live shows be like with this sonic changeup? Are you going to stick to the new record’s sound (adding in piano and horns, etc.) or are you going to amp things up a bit and stick to a stripped-down rock n’ roll script?
I’d say the sound is stripped down rock and roll across the board. The new record is our least produced yet (least addition of extra instruments, synthesizers, etc. etc.). Colin’s been playing keys live for about four years now. The shows have a lot of energy!
Are you all still tight with the Chicago Cubs? What are your favorite baseball highlights of 2019 so far?
Most of us have been Cubs fans our entire lives. Playing little league together, especially on the north side, everybody was obsessed with the Cubbies and it just kind of sticks with you forever. While it’s tough to support a team whose current ownership’s political leanings I am fiercely opposed to, I truly do love this team and (almost) all of its players. I was at Wrigley when Kyle Schwarber hit his first career walk off home run this year. That was a treat.
Listen to Twin Peaks’ newest record, Lookout Low, here and find photos from their Milwaukee show on 9/19, here.