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INTERVIEW: Madison, WI-based, indie-soul band, Bien Bien

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

Thanks for chatting with us! We’ve been busy, but having fun all at the same time. It’s the hustle man!

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “She Grooves Me”?

“She Grooves Me” is an ode to the intangible feelings and vibes you get from a love in your life. It is about the emotional groove that you ride when in a relationship with someone for a long time. There are ups and downs in these relationships, but you know that the reason you are with this person in the first place is because they grooved you or moved you at the start. And even though there are rough patches in the relationship and one uses the other or hurts the other, in the end, there is still the fact that the love still grooved you. But this song isn’t just about the intimate or long-term relationships. It’s about any experience you’ve had where you are just walking down the street on a normal day and you pass by someone that emotes so much love in you that you just feel this inexplicable groove hit your body. “She Grooves Me” is about the intangible love, the groove, the movement.

Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?

Being with my girl for a couple years has its ups and downs, its rough patches, its hurtings. But no matter what, the love, the groove – it’s always there in some form. It was what created our relationship and it is what makes it last.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

Yes! The story, timeline, shot sequence, cast and directors – they are all in place! We are just planing out or days to shoot it. The video should be out at some point in November. Stay tuned : )

Why naming the EP after the track in particular?

We feel that all of the songs on the She Grooves Me EP have the same influence that helped create the “She Grooves Me” single. All the songs on the EP have this groove, and prettiness to it – as if the impulse that was used to create these songs was an impulse of passionate, colorful, enjoyable and exciting love. It’s as if each song on the EP is a subtext of the header, “She Grooves Me” – each song on the EP is a detail or specific feeling within the general emotions that come with a relationship where someone is just groovin’ you.

How was the recording and writing process?

Fluid – we kept the entire recording process very spontaneous. We recorded all of these songs in our bandmate’s bedroom. The space is called Fort Knocks Studios. The process was very spontaneous because we went into each song with a plan and an arrangement, but we were all very open to new, exciting ideas. If Marshall Arts, our lead guitarist, laid down a new funky melody that really took fresh control of the song, we would keep it in there. Whatever made the song better in the moment, we did just that. That’s how the songs sound so fun and exciting, because it’s a direct result of us as the writers and recorders – we were having so much fun and we were so excited while making these songs.

What role does WI plays in your music?

Wisconsin definitely has the influence of indie rock in our music – the more reverb-driven, clean, rhythmic guitar sound that comes from the Midwest indie rock scene, like for example, Bon Iver, from Eau Claire, WI. There’s a sense of epic-ness in his music and some of our songs have that grandeur aspect to them that I would say is a direct influence from the emotional and grandiose indie rock ballads from up-north midwest. But our other genres that we blend together…they come from elsewhere…

Known for blending different genre together – does one tends to shine out the most depending on the lyrics’ theme?
That’s an interesting question. I would probably say yes, because if our lyrics are much more about the groove and about the psychedelia, then the song is going to have much more energy to it. If the song is much more introspective, and personal, and sensitive, then the song will have a much more subdued energy to it. Referring to the latter, we have a song on our future debut LP that is classical Spanish guitar based and the lyrics are much more emotional, personal and sensitive. Whereas on the other hand, “She Grooves Me” lyrics are about the groove and has a psychedelic imagery to the lyrics. But the beachy, California guitar sound, and the left-field Dilla-inspired hip hop drum kits still remain throughout the songs, bringing it all together.

What aspect of humility did you get to explore on this EP?

Personally, I learned how to be not only a better recording/technical musician, but be a better team player. I really learned how it’s always about giving, taking and creating space with your bandmates and your music. We can’t all play our instruments at once – we have to layer ourselves in the song with intention, and we have to give space to the other bandmates and, take space when space is given. A band is a team, we have to work together when recording or performing these songs.

Any plans to hit the road?

We have several regional shows in the Wisconsin area through the rest of 2016, but by the time our debut LP comes around in 2017, we will be sure to be seeing all of you around the country. We want to play as many shows as possible – we love the energy that is created between the fans and us.

What else is happening next in Bien Bien’s world?

Finishing the “She Grooves Me” music video, the EP in November, and more songs to release in the next year. As for now, we are just having fun, and actually recording a lot more material for future albums and projects. It’s all about constantly creating my friend. That’s what we have an impulse to do – so we must do it.

Listen here

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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