Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Patrick Keenan - bass / vocals
Paul McKenna - guitar
Joe Reilly - drums / vocals
Corey Diabase - guitar / vocals
For starters, what bands were you guys a part of prior to The Winter Sounds? How long has the band been around?
WS have been around for 10 years now. Before that I (Patrick) played bass in a band called Zydepunks, a cajun folk punk act from New Orleans. Corey and Paul both play in another New Orleans act called Skelatin. Joe has played/plays with with tons of bands including Pink Spiders, Doctor Jungle Cat and Yumi and the System.
What’s the origin of that name and have you changed the band’s name before?
Never changed the name. Its always been Winter Sounds. Originally, it fit the vibe of our first album, an EP called Land of No Output, which was recorded without a band name and before we played any shows.
Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs and do you think these topics will change over time?
I write most of the songs, but there are definitely some collaborations. We are also about 100 songs deep and have had coming and going members for awhile. Everyone that has played brings in ideas and styles that build off the core of the songs. I think many of the themes of the songs tend to be inspired somewhat by little ideas from something read or watched but then I usually don’t finish lyrics till pretty close to the studio time and even then I’ll change something at the last minute because in the studio new inspirations tend to pop up that are worth capturing, so I always leave some room to adapt. So most songs are lyrically more of a chunk of time than a specific idea. but sometimes, a few of them are very deliberate.
‘Minnesota’ was written while camping there for a week and soaking in the natural beauty and peacefulness of where we were staying. ‘Meteor’ was written specifically for my friend Rory Scovel for his first comedy special and was somewhat of a cartoon-like exploration of his rise to stardom via the lens of an outsider - usually this is described as meteoric, :). And Rory and i are both from Greenville, SC and we both have jumped in headfirst to this kind of crazy lifestyle with varying degrees of success ;) so I felt I could describe that shared space musically in much the same way he does with comedy.
I wanted it to be genuine and emotional and Rory also had a sonic landscape he was looking for, something ambient and big and I think that all these elements created something unique for us, something musical that we haven’t really done before. I’m really proud of it! ‘Broken Bodies’ the latest song which was written for Rory’s last special was almost completely inspired by a joke of his about touring which the punchline simply that it “brings out the best in me”… Being in a band on tour is being in a club late at night every night - you’re drunk, exhausted and you see a lot of crazy shit. I know that is again that shared space that comedians and musicians both experience
What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
I’ll just give you list of what each one of us have been listening to this year:
Patrick: Bon Iver, David Bazan, Fjordwalker, Miike Snow, Naragonia Quartet, Hammock
Joe: Simon & Garfunkel, Prince Buster, Berrington Levy, Iron Maiden, St. Lucia, Get up Kids
Paul: Tycho, Real Estate, King Krule, Flying Lotus
Corey: Parquet Courts, “warfrat” by the Grateful Dead, Third Eye Blind
Was there a particular band/artist or concert that inspired you to start a band?
My being inspired by music and wanting to be in a band kind of happened simultaneously. First two songs that I heard that I flipped my shit over were ‘Basketcase’ by Green Day and ‘the Sweater Song’ by Weezer
What do you do to prepare for a show?
While driving from city to city we sing a bunch of ukulele cover songs in the van. Kind of to warm up the voice mostly, though it is fun
What has been the biggest highlight of the band’s career so far?
Its been awhile but probably having our ‘Windy City Nights’ video up on Mtvu. Or having the ‘Broken Bodies’ song in Rory Scovel’s Netflix special; that was so awesome. We were also the lyrical inspiration for a character in the gay romantic christmas romp called 12 days of Hipster by Raine O’Tierney
I know its cheating but 3-way tie!!!!!
If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
I’ll ask the group:
Patrick: I think when Futureheads put out their self-titled album with ‘First Day’, ‘Meantime’ ‘Decent Days and Nights’ - loved the high energy and post-punk/pop vibe.
Joe: Rancid/Suicide Machines/Rocket from the Crypt tour 1995 or Another State of Mind Tour (Social Distortion / Youth Brigade)
Paul: Warped Tour 97 (descendants, reel big fish, pennywise, mighty mighty bosstones, less than jake, social distortion)
Corey: Vagrant Across America 2001 (saves the day, get up kids, anniversary, dashboard confessional, alkaline trio) or- Dylan with a band ’74
Is there anything else you would like to add?
‘Heartbeats’ video was filmed in estonia by director Zbanski Kino. He has done a ton of amazing videos which you can see here: https://zbanski.myportfolio.com/Also, our new album is called Maximum Reality and comes out December 1st on Logica Sonica