Category Archives: Music


215 Exclusive: Here and Now | With Denitia and Sene.

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Moving forward >> no matter the context, is so often attached to neglecting the here and now. When you’re ready to slow down, but still keep that right pace of progress in the foreground, allow denitia and sene. be a part of your journey. Just keep in mind they warned you there will be Side Fx along the way.

This past year has been one of emergence for the captivating duo. Combining forces in 2011 at the communal artist enclave in Brooklyn dubbed the “The Clubhouse” [or Club Casa], there is a special energy produced by the pair that translates into an organic artistry, distinctly portrayed both visually and sonically. In fact, their collective art-form works to heighten and aware your senses, leaving you peaked and ready for its delivery.

Capturing the eyes and ears of many a publication and audience, [Red Bull Sound Select, Rolling Stone, REVOLT, NPR … just to reference a few…] most recently their own nationwide “Side Fx” tour brought their music to a further-growing number of cities and fans.

“Side Fx” // denitia and sene. // Philly Dec. 13th // photo credit > Daniel Wooden

Denitia’s sultry voice and delivery evokes what first entices a youthful love, then certainly carries enough weight and edge to remind you this isn’t just child’s play. Sene’s rhythmic, dreamy production and layering vocal interjections succeed in defying a restrictive ‘genre-label’ to be attached. The duo’s music more aptly aligns with forming to the listeners own mood or situation.

During our interview they’ll suggest when they think is the best time to listen to their jams, but really leave it up to how you — and maybe that special someone next to you are feeling…..

…… A feeling of a new passion or fleeting love affair that you are wrapped up in before you know it, but you’re okay with the uncertainty, and you’re ready to feel some more. denetia and sene. bring just that to your day, or evening: That letting go and admitting, “I’m not really here for answers” while knowing questions will sooner or later be asked……

Citing their song “It’s your fault” :

But who’s to blame? // there’s nothing really I can change // there’s nothing really I can say // to make that go away

And I’m not ashamed // please don’t say you’ll change // I know it might seem strange // but I think it’s okay

I sat down with denitia and sene. at UBIQ in Philadelphia — the final stop on their tour— just before they took the stage for their Heineken Green Room performance.


11th Annual WKDU Electronic Music Marathon (EMM)

A special treat for all of you out there who aren’t ready to give up filling up on ‘goodness’ after Thanksgiving. Plus who doesn’t need something nice to pick you up on a Monday?! Below we’ve got fresh new mixes from the recent WKDU Philadelphia Electronic Music Marathon ft. King Britt & a bunch of other great DJ sets.

– Enjoy the tasty beats/treats ya’ll …

The 11th Annual WKDU Electronic Music Marathon (EMM) brought together over 30 Philly DJs to raise money for WKDU and two arts education nonprofits: Musicopia & The Village of Arts and Humanities.

DJs that spun the marathon included: King Britt (Ovum / Hyperdub), Dave P (Making Time), Rob Paine & Willyum (Goodie / Worship Recordings), Matthew Law & Mr. Sonny James (Illvibe Collective), DJ Sega (Mad Decent), DJ Apt One (Soul Clap Records), Noah Breakfast (former WKDU DJ / Rare MP3s), Matpat (Exploited Records / Plant Music), Les Professionnels (Nurvous Records) and DJ SYLO & Jansen (STUNTLOCO / Pizza Party), amongst others.

All photos courtesy of Nick Stropko.

The EMM had listeners from France to San Francisco and raised over $2,000 to be split equally amongst WKDU, Musicopia and The Village. WKDU is continuing its fundraising efforts for the station and their nonprofit partners by selling limited edition EMM t shirts and other KDU gear at (donations are also accepted at WKDU intends to use their portion of the proceeds to buy DJ  equipment for hosting even more events in the future.

In addition to DJs donating their time and money to be part of the marathon, many local businesses donated to WKDU to make the EMM happen, including Federal Donuts, Red Bull Philly, Mama’s Vegetarian, R5 Productions, Brewerytown Beats, Creep Records, Philadelphia Record Exchange and many more. “Rival” station WXPN even offered support.

The full DJ lineup and sponsor list can be found at

A definite highlight from the marathon were the two sets from King Britt (a blistering 40 minute afro-future / techno mix & a 90 minute ‘connecting the dots’ mix tracing the history of electronic music from to boogie to hip hop to footwork).

Over the past month, WKDU has gradually been releasing all the DJ sets on their Soundcloud. Friday Dec 5th, WKDU posted the remaining sets from the marathon, including King’s, to wrap up an amazing weekend of 75 hours of continuous electronic music.

About WKDU:

WKDU is Drexel University’s free-format, non-commercial, student-run radio station located in the basement of the Creese Student Center at 3210 Chestnut St.

WKDU broadcasts at 91.7 FM Philadelphia and worldwide and is known for its eclectic mix of quality programming that cannot be heard elsewhere on the radio dial.

Some DJs have had their shows for over 10 years and have cultivated dedicated listeners worldwide.

Nonprofit spotlight:

At the time of the marathon, King Britt was an artist in residence at The Village of Arts & Humanities, a nonprofit organization focused on community empowerment in North Philadelphia. King’s project with The Village called ‘Playback Musick’  took some naturally talented musicians and provided them with guidance and oversight in producing a radio show and an album titled “Strong and Independent” that is out now. King brought some of The Village / Playback Musick team with him to the studio to talk about their work and to MC his set.

Watch the Video on King’s project SPACES Episode 1: Designing Together from The Village:

The other nonprofit organization which proceeds will be going to is Musicopia.

Musicopia provides support to Philly area school music programs by giving teachers whatever resources they need to support music education in their resource deprived budgets. One of the groups that Musicopia brought in to perform was the Andrew Jackson Rock Band: HOME.

Teacher Chris Argerakis and his student band ended up spending so much time together in their band room, that they decided to call their band HOME.

For more information contact WKDU Electronic Music Director Chris Burrell.


215 Exclusive | MisterWives Interview

Guest contributor Ryan Quint talked with Will Hehir of MisterWives about their upcoming LP, life on the road and much more. MisterWives, made up of Mandy Lee (Vocals), Etienne Bowler (Drums) and Will Hehir (Bass) began making music together in late 2012. They played their first show together in February of 2013 and signed to Photo Finish/Republic shortly after.

Although a new band, their sound was focused and self-assured, quickly earning them a slew of blog love, including early nods from Pigeons and Planes, Earmilk, Neon Gold and more. In October, the band hit the road with Half Moon Run on their first national tour. The tour ended with a two triumphant sets at last year’s CMJ before heading out for a six week stint with American Authors & The Royal Concept. They released their debut EP “Reflections” this January and were featured as the first iTunes “Single of the Week” of 2014.

The lead single “Reflections” now boasts over 1.5 million views on Youtube and has reached the Top 40 Billboard Alternative Chart — as the band continues to tour in between writing and recording their much anticipated debut full length album.

Conversation with MisterWives | by Ryan Quint


Ryan Quint (RQ): First off, happy Thanksgiving and congratulations on all of your recent success, from the “Reflections” EP to the tour with Twenty One Pilots. How did you guys spend the holiday?

Will: I spent some time with my family and Mandy cooked a huge meal for herself & Etienne & their families in our apartment in Riverdale. We actually spent last Thanksgiving on the road and Mandy somehow miraculously cooked a huge feast for us in our hotel in Columbus, Ohio.

RQ: Let’s talk about your upcoming debut album. You have been in the studio for some time now writing and recording it; what is the current status of the album?

Will: The album is basically done. We’ve tracked pretty much everything. We’re looking at a release date around the beginning of the year with a pre-release hopefully starting in January and then a formal release in mid-February.

RQ: Do you have any plans for a single?

Will: We’ll probably have a single released towards the end of the year or during the pre-release and then more songs will begin to come out in January.

RQ: Can the fans/public expect a similar sound as your EP on the new album?

Will: We’ve been describing the project as Misterwives 2.0. When we first started doing the EP we had the idea that they would just be demos so we recorded them all in Etienne’s bedroom, but this time around we were able to do everything with the producer of “Reflections” in an actual studio. Our sound has definitely graduated as far as production quality, but as a band, everything has gotten a lot tighter. We’ve had the luxury of being on tour for the majority of 2014, which has definitely helped. With that being said, we’re really, really excited for this new project.

RQ: Did you get to record any music on tour with Twenty One Pilots?

Will: We didn’t record anything, but our trumpet player, who also plays keyboard, accordion and glockenspiel, would go on stage and perform one song with them each show, which definitely helped bridge the gap between our band and their band.

RQ: “Reflections” is in the Billboard Top 40 of both the Alternative Radio and Audience-Driven Alternative Songs charts, one of Mediabase’s forty most-played alternative songs, and has over 1.5 million views Youtube. Did you ever expect this much success?

Will: (Laughs) No. We basically wake up every day like, “What the hell is going on?” When we started playing together we loved it so much that any potential success was in the back of our mind. I think we were trying to get past the fact that everything gelled so well and we were having so much fun with each other that we didn’t think so much about the potential success as much. It’s definitely a shock. We take it as it comes and we’re so grateful for everything. We really can’t express the level of gratitude for each and every person supporting us; it’s incredibly humbling. I don’t think we’re capable of getting an ego after seeing people sing the words to our songs in 5,000 person venues on tour with Twenty One Pilots.

RQ: It’s good to hear that you appreciate everything and do not take it all for granted, even though the success is coming so quickly.

Will: I was just talking to Etienne about what Sundays used to be, dreading work and the end of the weekend, and now we’re like: “Ok, let’s jam for a little bit tomorrow. Yea that’d be a productive day.” We’re definitely in awe of it all and extremely grateful for everything that’s happened.

RQ: You guys recorded the single four times. What did it originally sound like?

Will: It sounded really different at first. We recorded it when we first started playing together back in 2013. It was one of the first songs we ever recorded. We actually left it for a little while, then went back to it, but couldn’t capture the right energy that we were going for. When we sent it off to the producer, Frequency, he took it over the edge. That song really reflects our relationship with Frequency. We had the meat and potatoes of the song and he threw in a few ideas with the melody and harmony and it’s been an absolute pleasure to work with him.

RQ: Did you know the fourth time was the charm?

Will: We really took our time and definitely don’t half ass anything. When he sent us a mix of the song, we had a few notes for him, and we obviously weren’t a huge priority at the time, so we were just patient with everything. He sent us the final mix back about three weeks later and once we heard it, we knew it was exactly what we wanted. We are definitely proud of the “Reflections” that everyone hears today. There was a ton of time and energy put into getting it to that level.


RQ: The cover of the “Reflections” EP is very unique. Can you explain the significance of the gramophone with the different animals?

Will: We were trying to figure out a cover art while we were on the road and we came up with the idea to incorporate each of our own individual spirit animals. Mine is a dinosaur because I’m basically a five year old trapped in a 26 year old’s body and I love dinosaurs. Etienne’s spirit animal is an octopus for a variety of reasons. His favorite number is 8, his nickname is 8 and he was born in October so he’s all about the octopus. Finally, Mandy’s animal is an elephant. It’s a majestic creature and she can definitely relate to the nurturing nature of the elephant. The hummingbird was just thrown in there and then the gramophone is obviously not only a reflection of the music, but also the way that we view music. The gramophone represents a time when music wasn’t overproduced. When we recorded our EP and album, we made sure to use live instruments and have a real authentic musical feel, which is represented through the gramophone.

RQ: Can we expect similar artwork for the album?

Will: I can’t say too much, but what I can say is that it’s basically a Misterwives 2.0 cover. It will be a more evolved version of the first cover. The spirit animals will still be represented, but in a different way. We’ve been working with really great photographers and artists and we’re really excited about that.

RQ: When the album drops, do you plan on going on a headlining tour?

Will: Yes, we are currently working out the details for a headlining tour. Were not 100% sure on the timing of everything. The way we always envisioned everything was to get the album done, then do a headlining tour, but basically be on the road as much as possible. It’s so much fun working on the album and recording new music, but our heart is really in the live show and performing the music, meeting new people and personally showing our gratitude to everyone who’s supported.

RQ: Do you still expect Mandy to cook for the band as you continue to grow?

Will: I’m always very hopeful of that. I’m grateful for every meal that she cooks for us and fortunately she does it a majority of the time on tour. So I hope she continues to cook for us because even as we grow and can afford to eat wherever we want, it still wouldn’t be as good as Mandy’s cooking.

RQ: Favorite recipe of Mandy’s?

Will: Does Thanksgiving count as a recipe? All of that stuff. If I could eat what Mandy made last Thanksgiving for us everyday, I’d probably be really happy… and about 700 pounds.

RQ: (Laughing). Thank you very much. Good luck with everything moving forward!

misterwives_2For more information visit

Twitter // IG // Facebook // Soundcloud // Youtube // Vevo


215 Exclusive | Kat Dahlia Interview: A Story To Tell

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For many, only waiting until you are 24 years old to achieve success, let alone begin a career, is not too long at all. But for an artist long since tapped to emerge beneath the bright lights of the music industry it can feel much longer. All is relative in the end, and for Miami’s bright young music star – or blooming flower if you will – Kat Dahlia can tell you her story indeed includes a patient and at times trying chapter.

Whether canceling multiple tours due to a pseudo-cyst on her vocal chord, or overcoming personal hardships and a “toxic relationship” that have challenged her these past few years, Kat has dealt with the weeds and has gained an understanding that this is all part of “My Garden.”

Live on stage [see photos below], Kat shares her story and the many sides of her personality and musical flavor that she describes as “honest and diverse.” This provides the audience with a full and engaging show while displaying sharp vocal talents and a soaring voice alongside a talented group of young musicians representing Queens, NY, Toronto, Canada, and Cali, Colombia.

I sat down with Kat in the afternoon before her show at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia [Nov 24]. We chatted about what this long awaited ‘beginning’ means to her and the thought behind the title of her album and tour. I also learned a little bit more about who this talented, exciting storyteller is.

Chances are she’ll have a few more stories to tell after her tour…

KAT DAHLIA  2014 U.S. tour dates preceding the release of  MY GARDEN, in stores January 13, 2015 and now available for preorder at iTunes, Amazon MP3 and Amazon. Anyone who preorders the album will receive four instant gratis tracks, including “Crazy,” “Gangsta,” “Mirror” and the Salaam Remi-produced “Clocks.” Fans who Shazam Kat’s “Crazy” can enter to win a pair of tickets for to catch her#MyGarden tour in the city of their choice. Spotify users can also enter to win tickets to see Kat live in concert by creating a #CRAZY playlist on @Spotify and sharing it with the tag #CRAZY4KAT.

To learn more about KAT DAHLIA, visit:

Official Website:






Photo credits // Daniel Wooden


Gravy Trap: An Autumn Classic – Wednesday Nov 26th

On Wednesday November 26th, 2014 Cult Classics and [EV]-BnksCrtv will debut a showcase production at Sole Control in the Piazza, Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia. .

The event will be presented as a movie catered to the city of Philadelphia. “We not only want people to feel like the audience, but also cast” says Tre’ Banks, who will be reffered to as the “narrator” rather than the traditional “host”, all tying into the feature film experience. The movie/event will be titled “GRAVY TRAP” — based off of the classic pop film Parent Trap. The most notorious holiday condiment (gravy),and a play on one of today’s most popular descriptive words (trap).


Recap footage will serve as the film that Philly hosted, developed and produced.

Headlining the show case will be Atlanta’s rising superstar Key! He appears on “Look at my Wrist” and “B*tch You Guessed It”. 

The duration of the night will be orchestrated by both Reebok Brand ambassador DJ YS and Ohio’s own rising selector, DJ Chris Mars B.

The showcase will be hosted and narrated by personality and curator Tré Banks and the beautiful New York native Franceleslia.

Acts will range from Philadelphia Natives as well as guests representing Ohio and Washington DC.

The night will also entail a collaboration pop up between emerging Philadelphia brands CMTA (Creative Minds Think Alike) and MaryJanesCloset.




Lauryn Hill At The Electric Factory This Weekend

Ms. Lauryn Hill will be performing at the Electric Factory in Philadelphia this Saturday, November 15 performing renditions of her classic records. Her appearance at Bonnaroo this year gave fans a taste of her music with a new twist, pulling on her reggae, hip-hop and R&B influences.

Coming to Philly this weekend, alternative hip-hop artist Kuf Knotz and the lyrically elite Talib Kweli will join Ms. Hill for a high energy show. You won’t want to miss this one, so be sure to grab a friend and head down for what’s sure to be an epic show.


Ms. Lauryn Hill
When: Saturday, November 15, 8 p.m.
Where: The Electric Factory, 421 N 7th Street
Cost: $59.50-$100
More Info: Click here.



Call Ms. Lauryn Hill the mother of hip-hop invention; with her 1998 solo debut The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, the Fugees’ most vocal member not only established herself as creative force on her own, but also broke new ground by successfully integrating rap, soul, reggae, and R&B into her own sound.

Ms. Lauryn Hill’s first solo effort, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998), established her as a major talent in her own right. The album sold more than 12 million copies and earned the singer-songwriter five Grammys, three American Music Awards, a Billboard Award, a Soul Train Award and an MTV Music Award.

After an extended hiatus, Hill returned in 2002 with MTV Unplugged No. 2.0, a recording of her two-hour acoustic performance on the popular series MTV Unplugged. In October 2005, Hill performed two songs at the Take Back TV concert launching Al Gore’s CurrentTV. An unofficial compilation of her recent material appeared under the title Khulani Phase (2010).


Recap: Freddie Gibbs at Underground Arts 10/28

Presented by Bonfire: Tuesday October 28th featured Freddie Gibbs live on stage at Underground Arts in front of a hyped crowd. Fresh off stops north of the border in Canada and continuing all across the USA into November, Gibbs brought his talents to Philly with opening acts Remy Banks, GrandeMarshall and Voss.

Voss was the opening act, afterwards was Grande Marshall who hyped up the crowd with his entourage. Remy banks from Worlds Fair was backed up with fellow member Nigel. Remy Banks also brought out Chynna who performed her latest songcalled “Glen Coco“. Once Freddie Gibbs came out, the crowd showed him much of his welcoming in Philadelphia with smoke in the air.

 @FreddieGibbs | Facebook

Photo Credit: Daniel Wooden

Check out Gibbs’ mixtape here:


About Freddie Gibbs:

Freddie Gibbs is a direct product of Gary, Indiana’s East Side. Born into a vacuum of poverty, Gibbs is an uncut distillation of his surroundings.

Freddie’s keen survivalist mentality and work ethic won him a scholarship to Ball State University for football, but he was dismissed over questionable allegations. Gibbs was cast back into the sink-or-swim realities of his upbringing, and he resorted to pimping and manufacturing freebase to keep the lights on. A humble critic, Freddie never meant to be a part of the problem, and explored means of supporting himself without partaking in the cyclical plague of drugs and prostitution. A gifted writer who stood out amongst his peers with his reserved wit and command of language, Freddie began to rap about the things he saw.

As word of his skills spread to the coasts, he aligned himself with notable producers like The Alchemist, Red Spyda, Just Blaze, and Buckwild to create a discography that illustrates his experiences as a struggling denizen of a blighted community. In 2010, XXL Magazine caught wind of Freddie’s unique approach and nominated Gibbs to their Freshman Top 10. Subsequently, Freddie Gibbs’ previous mixtapes, which capture the forsaken instrumental aesthetic of 90’s boom-bap and juxtapose it with his distinctly Midwestern double-time flow, began to garner widespread critical acclaim and industry attention.

The rapper also endeavored to expand his musical horizons by teaming up with UK dubsteb producer Joker on a remix of the track “The Vision” and with New York indie-noise-pop duo Cults on a reworking of their track “Bad Things.” His willingness to both function in the world of gangster rap and to step outside the strict confines of hip hop to form unexpected collaborations with artists from a broad musical spectrum highlights a truly versatile musician.


Exclusive Interview: A Conversation With Joywave

Guest contributor Ryan Quint [ @ryan_quint ] of Universal Music Group sat down with Joywave — an indie rock band from Rochester, NY – best known for “Dangerous,” a collaboration with Big Data, which peaked at #1 on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. Their current single, “Tongues” featuring KOPPS currently has over 300,000 views on Youtube and is featured on the FIFA15 Soundtrack. Joywave is currently on tour opening for Betty Who on the High Society Tour.

Youtube | Soundcloud | @joywavemusic

Conversation with Joywave — Oct 11, 2014 — Philly

Ryan Quint: Joywave formed in 2010 and has been releasing music since 2011, but your first huge success came in 2013 with Big Data’s “Dangerous,” did you have any idea when you were recording it that it would be a hit or even eventually reach #1 on the Billboard Alternative chart?

Dan: These are all very good facts that you’ve presented us with right now. Big Data was a band that me and Alan (from Big Data) started for a couple years and we just recorded 4 songs together in Brooklyn on 8 random dates over that period of time. And no, it was a total surprise. Alan had a full-time job, and I was doing Joywave full-time and then Sirius XM started playing the song and KROQ in LA started playing the song and everything really started happening. It was organic, people just liked the song. Definitely caught us off-guard.

RQ: Speaking of radio and success, I was driving the other day and “Tongues” came on the radio. What was your reaction the first time you heard your own single Dangerous on the radio?

Sean: We have about 20 videos of us listening to “Tongues” on the radio and each time someone will focus the camera on the radio station and then pan up to the person driving the car and they just have to act like they do not care.

Dan: I don’t remember the first time we heard it but I think it was on Sirius XM. I have a video of my mom listening to it, which is pretty awesome. She started screaming and doing an awesome mom dance. I think its on Instagram somewhere.

Paul: Hearing it on KROQ in LA was the best one because we were on the road in LA driving when we heard it.

RQ: Let’s talk about the video for “Tongues.” It has over 300,000 views on Youtube. It’s very unique. For anyone that hasn’t seen it, there is a lot of nudity, guns shooting clothes at people and an underlying love story.  Who’s idea was it, how did it all come about?

Paul: The director, The Daniels, they came up with the treatment and the idea, all of it and we instantly fell in love. How could you not?

[There is a warning due to some minor nudity – Agree to terms to watch]

RQ: There was also an underlying love story within the video.

Dan: Yea, like a Pocohantas thing.

Sean: So many layers.

Paul: You kinda have to watch twice because theres a lot going on.

RQ: Dan you described Joywave’s sound as “2080’s” (a mix that include 80’s new wave & orchestral music). Based on that, who would you say are Joywave’s musical influences, if any?

Dan: We don’t like genres. We’ve done everything we can to avoid them but still weave together something artistically and culturally with the band. I think the future of music is genre less. I still love records where its 1 sound all the way through but I’m more impressed when its awesome all the way without being the same song 11 times.

RQ: How did the High Society tour with Betty Who come about? Did she contact you guys specifically or was it more of a label decision

Dan: We met Betty at CMJ last year and she asked Sean to do a remix of “Somebody Loves You” and then from there she asked us to join the tour.

RQ: You’ve had a few shows already, how has it been going so far? You were sold out in NYC…

Dan: Yea it’s been awesome.

RQ: How Do You Feel? the EP is actually exactly 7 months old today so I want to do a little game where I ask you how you feel about something.

Dan: Happy Birthday EP!!

RQ: How did you find out about being on the FIFA15 Soundtrack along with Avicii, and Foster the People to name a few.

Sean: We just got copies of FIFA a couple days ago and we were playing it in the van just starting games and then starting over waiting to hear “Tongues” but never heard. So I’m taking your word for it that its in there.

RQ: That’s just what I’ve heard. I haven’t played it yet but maybe they’re lying to us.

Dan: We played a show in Columbus recently and the radio station there gave us a goodie bag and they gave us Columbus Crew scarves so I think thats our team now.

RQ: Would you call yourselves soccer fans?

Dan: No! But we’re Columbus Crew fans now. Whatever they’re doing, we’re fans of it.

RQ: How did you feel out about being named best “All Ages Dance Party” by Rolling Stone at Lollapalooza?

Dan: It was awesome. It was a really, really good surprise. None of us expected that.

RQ: They also named you an Emerging Artist as well.

Dan: Yea that was really good. I didn’t realize there were that many people from Rolling Stone watching our set.

RQ: Do you have any pre-show rituals?

Sean: [Laughs]. You’re looking at it. This is it.

Dan & Paul: Consume liquids.

Dan: Consume wifi. Paul stretches.

Paul: Yea, gotta do the Paul stretch.

RQ: Have you had a cheesesteak in Philly?

Dan: We’ve been to Tony Lukes!

RQ: Your last project, How Do You Feel, is now exactly 7 months old, your new album is due out in 2015, what is the current status of your upcoming LP?

Dan: The album is done. It’s getting mastered right now. I think we’ll have tracks trickle out throughout the Fall and Spring from it and then the full-length should be out in the first quarter of next year. I would guess by SXSW but there’s no official date.

RQ: Do you have a single that you’re ready to release from it?

Dan: Yea, I think “Somebody New” is going to be the next single. We’re gonna shoot a video for that.

RQ: Awesome, thanks guys!


Exclusive Interview: Grizfolk

Guest contributor Ryan Quint of Universal Music Group talked with Grizfolk after their recent tour stop with Bastille at the Liacouras Center [concert review] — promoting their new EP “From the Spark.”

Ryan: For people who are unfamiliar with Grizfolk, can you explain how the band came together?

Grizfolk: We met in LA. Adam, Bill, and Brendan had been in a band prior to Grizfolk. At the same time, Adam was writing songs with Fredrik and eventually met Sebastian. We stumbled upon a sound that inspired us to start a group, so we put all of our focus on that, which turned in to Grizfolk.

Ryan: Let’s talk about the Bad Blood / Last Stand tour. Did Bastille approach you specifically or was it more of a record label decision because you are both signed to Virgin?

Grizfolk: We originally did 3 shows with Bastille, and after the 3rd show Dan asked us to join him for the European tour. They also asked us to join them for the current tour “Bad Blood / Last Stand”. They are some of the hardest working guys we’ve ever met, and we’re honored to have them as friends as well as blessed to be able to join them on the road. 

Ryan: Your first big hit — “The Struggle” — gained success from the help of a friend’s blog post. Elaborate on this and explain how it eventually landed you a record deal with Virgin. Also, was there any competition in deciding on a record label?

Grizfolk: When we originally wrote The Struggle, we knew right away that we had stumbled upon something special. That song has opened a lot of doors for us, and I believe it was written in less than an hour. We put it on Soundcloud to share with our friend under the username Griz Adams, and Brandon from the Burning Ear posted it on his blog. It was very well received, and soon we went on tour. By the time we arrived in Portland, Virgin Records was flying in to have dinner with us and check out the show. From the start we had a great feeling about the music they put out and the staff. There were other labels interested but for us it seemed like a great match, as well as perfect timing. 

Ryan: I was recently introduced to Grizfolk and learned that all of the members come from different musical backgrounds, ranging from Hip-Hop to Rock to Funk and Electronic. Does this ever cause issues when making music or is this musical diversity an advantage?

Grizfolk: When we write songs, the influences come out naturally. It’s an honest stylistic collaboration where anything is possible. 

Ryan: The Beastie Boys are one of many major influences on Grizfolk. Who are some of your other musical influences?

Grizfolk: We love all of Justin Vernon’s projects: Bon Iver, volcano choir, and the shouting matches. More recently, most of us have been listening to Ryan Adams new record quite a bit. Chet Faker and Blood Orange, also.

Ryan: California is an inspiration for your music; you specifically mentioned Joshua Tree in one interview. I visited this past summer and it was incredible. Talk about how California, Joshua Tree in particular, inspires you.

Grizfolk: When we write music, we imagine where the song takes place. Sometimes it’s the desert, sometimes is downtown LA or maybe the mountains or on a boat out at sea. We are inspired by people, places and ideas and there’s quite lot of great people, places and ideas in California. 

Ryan: I personally love the message portrayed in your new single, “Hymnals”, about pursuing dreams because life is short. Would you say that this is a major theme in your music?

Grizfolk: We all definitely have the mentality of never giving up and pursuing dreams, no matter what the outcome may be. We tend to have themes of people traveling the lonesome roads, trying to find what really matters to them. 

Ryan: Are there any plans for making new music while on tour or are you strictly focused on the shows?

Grizfolk: We’re always working on new songs when we’re on tour. It’s a very convenient age of technology, in that whenever we get inspired on the road we can open our laptops and start working. No matter if we’re in the van, in a hotel or even on stage sound checking, we have some sort of tools available for us to create something new. 

Grizfolk’s new single “Hymnals” – from the band’s 2014 EP From The Spark (Virgin Records) – impacts Alternative radio this month.

From The Spark on iTunes:


10/24 – Rochester, NY @ Main Street Armory w/Bastille

10/29 – San Diego, CA @ University of California, San Diego

10/29 – San Diego, CA @ The Loft

10/30 – Stockton, CA @ University of Pacific

11/11 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent

11/20 – Los Angeles, CA @ Shrine Expo Hall w/Bastille

11/21 – Pomona, CA @ Fox Theater w/Bastille

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