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INTERVIEW: Alice Underground

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Hello! Thank you so much for the welcome!  We’ve been busy in the woodshed, getting ready for our album release.  We’re in really good spirits though and very excited to share all the things we’ve been working on!

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Catch Me Before Midnight”?

“Catch Me Before Midnight” is our first demo song as Alice Underground from many moons ago.  We almost instantly turned it into a video for the first Golden Stag event, a 40s-themed soirée, originally produced by Sypher Arts Studio and LACMA.  We also have performed live at every Golden Stag event since then.

Our first single off of our upcoming album, The Cambria Sessions, is actually going to be “Superman.” It’s about how in love, we either put someone else on a pedestal, or we struggle with being put on a pedestal.  I don’t need a superman—I just want to love as a human being.

Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?  How has your fateful first show inspire the songs on this record?

“Catch Me Before Midnight” was written for that Golden Stag event that I mentioned above, which was a New Year’s Eve show.  After doing this event, we were incredibly inspired to write more songs in the vein of this style and collaborated with Shawn Strider on some of the songs.  Shawn is also a producer for the Golden Stag Events. We’ve been a part of the Sypher Arts Studios for five years now, which is his company, and have collaborated with him on numerous projects.  “Superman” was one of the songs that came from a long and wildly creative night during one of these writing sessions.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

We’re excited to release the video for “Superman” on June 17th!  You’ll be able to see this on our website at www.aliceunderground.net or on our YouTube channel.

The single comes off your new album Cambria Sessions – what’s the story behind the title?

The album was written with the storyline in mind of two girls who are trying to make their dreams come true in Hollywood in an imaginary golden age, a time that never was.  After going through a series of challenges, the ladies finally decide to pack up their car and escape north to Cambria.  Cambria in reality is a beautiful town along the coast of California.  It feels like a magical place where people can go to reconnect with themselves and hear the whispers of the muses.

How was the recording and writing process?

Both processes have been very organic.  The very first song written for this album was “Hard to Resist,” a song I (Tash) originally conceived of when I was living in Memphis.  I was inspired by stride piano and was surrounded by so much amazing blues and jazz.  That particular song was one of those songs that just pours out of you.  The other songs that were to follow all felt very natural and easy to write, because of the amazing creative synergy that we have with our group.

In terms of recording, we wanted to take the approach of playing all at the same time.  So we all piled into Steve’s recording studio and knocked out the instrumental part of it on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.  We added in vocals at the end, as well as some additional cello by the amazing Eru Matsumoto.

Does Texas plays a role in your music?

I think inevitably that our experiences and culture influence our creative work.  Growing up in Texas has inspired me musically to love blues from musicians such as Stevie Ray Vaughn, Eric Johnson, and Janis Joplin.  I also find that the grittiness and rawness of having grown up in Texas comes out in my work.  Plus the Texan accent sometimes shows up with me and Sasha when we’re singing…or when we’re tired. 😉

 How has your previous musical background have influence this project?

Everyone in the band comes from different musical backgrounds, and I love that, it makes for a melting pot of stylistic influences.  Gordon, our bassist, comes from the jazz world, and I grew up studying classical music as a pianist, which eventually evolved into voice.   Scott grew up playing in various rock bands, Steve in rock and hip-hop groups, and Sash in the musical theatre realm.  We all have a love for so many different types of music, and it’s been a really fun process to explore our musical creations together.

Any plans to hit the road?

We’re excited to do a southwest tour in July.  Alice Underground is a part of a big collective, The Alice Project, which also includes Mankind is Obsolete, AL1CE, and ¡BASH!.  We all share members in these bands, which spans across vastly different styles of music.  We’ll be playing in different cities with the various projects in Arizona and Texas.  It’ll be great to be back in the motherland and to get to make mom stops on the tour!

What else is happening next in Alice Underground’s world?

Our next show after our album release show is going to be July 4th at Anime Expo.  We’re going to be part of an event celebrating Cowboy Bebop, and we’ll be playing music from this anime.  We’re all very much looking forward to being a part of the anime world that has really influenced us!  After that, we’ll be working on another album for The Alice Project and planning a fall tour.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, play guitar, music geek, movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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One comment

  1. Thanks so much for the interview, we had a blast! Much <3 from Alice Underground 🙂

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