Interview w/ Westerly RI's Wild Sun
Got the chance to sit down and chat with a band based out of Westerly, RI by the name of Wild Sun! The guys just premiered their new single "Shy Hinges" off their forthcoming debut album Little Truths. The band's sound can best be described as a grimy, lyrically raw musical combination that can't possibly be denied, and represents a new breed of bands that are emanating from the small but very active music scene of Rhode Island. The guys were nice enough to sit down and do an interview with MusicBoxPete as we get to know them a little more, plus we delve behind the recording process of their new album, and where their current career path takes them. Here is the transcript from our chat:
Give us your names and roles in the band?
Glenn Kendzia – vocals, guitars, keys | Cameron Raubeson – drums, backing vocals | Paul Fazio - bass
How did you guys all meet and what is the story behind the band name?
Cam and Glenn were friends since high school, having played in a couple bands together and working at the same local coffee shop for a couple years. Paul came into the picture one night in August of 2012 at a Westerly, RI dive bar through a mutual friend (also named Cam). Glenn and Paul did shots and talked about music until Paul fell down, but not before agreeing to meet up and jam that week. The rest is history.
Describe your sound to those who aren't too familiar with you?
Fans at shows always tell us we are just straight up rock. There’s no syntheaizers or electronic music elements going on.. we plug in our gear and play the way bands we grew up idolizing played. It’s edgy but not over the top heavy alternative with big, driving guitar and pulsing rhythm. It has the catchy hook of 90s radio bands like Gin Blossoms and Collective Soul, with musical passages in the veins of Allman Brothers and Tom Petty, topped with the wit and honesty of bands lie Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie.
Growing up, what were the bands that directly influenced you to play music?
We all share a ton of bands in common that we love, especially big riffing classic rock bands. Stuff that you put on and can’t help but smile… Thin Lizzy, Led Zeppelin, Molly Hatchet, Allman Brothers, Eric Clapton, and scores of others. If we had to pick favorites from a long running time it would be Paul – Black Crows, Cameron – Brand New, Glenn - Phish
Being from RI, what is the music scene like there and how does it compare to Boston?
The music scene in Rhode Island is great. Iy’s not a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow where scores of eager fans show up to every local show, but you can get out of it what you put in. We’ve found if you take the time to promote and get the word out, Rhode Islanders DO come out because chances are they know you, know someone who knows you, or have heard your name before. That’s where the smallness of RI plays to our favor. Paul and Glenn lived in Boston (before they met) five years ago and played out in bands, but didn’t feel the same responsiveness that we feel in Rhode Island now.
Talk about the creative process behind your music and how you guys usually compose your material?
Glenn typically writes the lyrics first, or simultaneous with a demo form of music. Then together we all play through it until we’ve made it our own.
What was it like to record your debut album "Little Truths", where did you guys record and how pleased are you with the finished product?
Recording “Little Truths” was the coolest experience we have had so far. We sent our demos to Bryce Goggin in Brooklyn on a whim, when we were talking about our favorite producers. (We were aiming big with blind faith). Bryce got back to us and really loved the material we had, and he seemed to get exactly what we were going for in our initial communications. We went down to Brooklyn for two weeks in the winter (it was freezing— like freezing, freezing). We had two weeks to track and mix the record, so the days were long but productive and extremely rewarding. It was also the first time any of us had recorded on tape, which was something we really wanted to do. We’re very proud of how the finished album came out!
In your spare time away from making music, what can we see you guys doing for fun?
Paul owns a gourmet sandwich shop with his brother, where Glenn bartends when he isn't playing solo gigs. Cam is a gear head and when he isn’t doing professional auto body work, is cruising in his 1983 Volkswagen Rabbit GTI.
What's in store for you guys next, any upcoming shows in the future you'd like to talk about?
We will be doing a record release show for the album in our hometown at The Knickerbocker in Westerly, RI. After that we will be gearing up for 3 showcases at CMJ Music Marathon in New York City next month!
Lastly, where do you see yourselves moving forward with this band?
Playing music professionally is something we have all dreamed of since we were young. We’re going in all with this, with our eyes on getting our music into a larger audience and performing for as many people as possible. The only place to go is forward!
Thanks once again to WIld Sun for taking some time out of their busy schedules to do this interview! It's great to chat with bands that I'm not too familiar with as it allows me to get to know them more on a level playing field, plus explorng bands from outside of the Boston region increases our awareness of acts that are looking to make a dent on our musical radar, and hopefully become devoted followers of in the process as well. For more info on Wild Sun, 'Like' them on Facebook here and check out their official homepage at this locale here for more in depth information regarding them.