Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
DD: Pretty good! Thanks for having us.
Can you talk to us more about your song “Animals”?
DD: Our keyboard player, Andre, was playing this crazy pattern, where each hand was playing a different time signature on the piano and I thought “I should write something to this”— It sounded like Genesis or Yes and I guess I found that appealing. I think I wanted my vocal to sound like Gordon Lightfoot and failed miserably.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
DD: If you mean lyrically, it’s really about that moment when intentions go from best to worst- when you find yourself compelled to do the opposite of you know you should be doing— not a good place to be, but everyone’s been there.
Any plans to release a video for the track?
DD: None so far, but I’m open to it.
The single comes off your new album Jet Black – what’s the story behind the title?
DD: I’ve always thought it was cool when an album has a title track- that was the top contender of all the song titles from the record and I think it sums up the darker side of the record pretty nicely.
How was the recording and writing process?
DD: Generally, I demo the structure of the song—a beat, some synths, a little bass and guitars sometimes, and my vocal before the rest of the band comes in and makes it all come to life. I have a studio called RCRD in Atlanta where we did most of the record. In truly luxurious fashion, we were able to work on a song or two at a time until we felt there was enough great material to justify an album. It’s a really good way to work—each song has it’s own sound and it’s own vibe. What glues it all together is the songs and us.
Your music has been described as similar to Radiohead and Joy Division – do they play any role on the writing of this album or your music overall?
DD: Not really. I like both of those bands a lot and I’m sure there’s influence, but I also like Miles Davis, Bad Brains, Jesus Lizard, Jay Z, and Madonna.
What is it about the 80s that you guys find somewhat fascinating?
DD: For me, 80’s music is the soundtrack of my childhood. Before my teenage years when I was surly and listening to Fugazi and Nirvana and The Pixies—There was Cyndi Lauper and Tears For Fears and Duran Duran and Run DMC and Ghostbusters and Goonies and ET. I grew up with it but was too young to really understand it. I re-discovered a lot of records from that era as an adult and it’s given me a deeper well to draw from as a writer and producer.
Where else did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?
DD: I always write what I know. Whenever I try to write a song like a story about someone else, it sucks. I have to write from a place of personal experience if I want it to mean anything. So essentially, it’s all auto-biographical.
Any plans to hit the road?
DD: Yeah, we’re out April 7th-15th. We start in Nashville, end in Atlanta, and we’re in the midwest for most of the time in between—should be fun.
What else is happening next in PLS PLS’ world?
DD: We’ve already started tracking a new record—it’s still a ways off, but like so many things that go terribly wrong, it’s starting off pretty well.