Brooklyn band WRITER just released a delicious new LP called Principle Web. Fuzzy, distorted, and dance-y in all the right places, it’s one of those albums that just hits the spot.
ATYPICAL SOUNDS had a nice chat with drummer James Ralph about the making of the album, being a band in New York, and where to find the best pizza.
Congratulations on your new album. How did it feel to finally play your record release at Berlin? Did you find the people who hang out there to be absurdly well-dressed?
The show was really great. Yea I know what you mean…very well dressed. We played our new record from start to finish excluding one song. I’ve seen other bands do this but we haven’t, ever. It is kind of like listening to the record while playing the record.
Your press release describes the band as “neo-grunge.”
Basically, it’s an ever-changing and new take on a lot of music we love and the majority of that music happens to be grunge. But I heard someone call us “hypnotic scuzz” recently and I really dig that.
Was there anything you learned while recording the album that you wished you had known going into the process?
Sometimes it can be really difficult recreating live demos from our practice space into structured recordings. I think we knew this already but sometimes you just have to leave the demos the way they first came out of you and not structure them at all. Also, Brian Herman and his Treefort Recording Studio in BK is always our favorite dark and twisted studio to work in. Jim Jarmusch based the vampires’ home studio in the movie ‘Only Lovers Left Alive’ on Treefort.
You’ve toured quite a bit. Is there anything you do to prepare for life on the road? Have you had any notable encounters with fans at any of your performances?
We usually just try to save money cause you don’t really make any on the road. Ian MacKaye from Fugazi came to watch Os Mutantes and us in D.C. a few years back. Was pretty cool to drink a beer with that dude. Another would be headlining a show in Pittsburgh at brillobox. We were wondering all day if people were going to come see us. I think that’s normal but when people do make it out and buy records and sing your songs, there is nothing really like it.
Growing up in beautiful, sunny, Southern California, were you often tempted to cut school and do something fun?
I definitely cut some school and got a burrito or drove to the beach.
Who has the best pizza in the city?
Rosa’s pizza in Queens is the all time but Joe’s in the city is perfect.
What’s the stupidest thing you’ve fought about with [brother and bandmate] Andy?
Nothing… Literally fighting about nothing.
What are you up to for the rest of the year? Do you have more live performances coming up?
New York and all the venues have been good to us. That said we don’t have anything booked as of right now but we really love this new record and are planning to tour on it through out this year locally and nationally.