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INTERVIEW: Carroll

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

Hey thanks, good to be here! We’ve been pretty good, playing Philly and New York a lot and low key recording a record in our space in Philly. Pretty happy summer is ending, our band leans pretty autumnal.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Velvet”?

“Velvet” is vibey new track we just released and the first of a fresh batch of new songs we’ve been diving into. It features a dark and moody palette which grows into a sort of swirling tsunami towards the ending climax – plus ripping sax solo during the bridge. We had a great time making this track. It was definitely more of a studio piece for us than it was a live band thing, but we’ve settled into playing it live now and I think it retains some of it’s drama.

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

Honestly no but I have been getting into a bit more of a darker sonic color these days and I think “Velvet” reflects that a bit. I spent weeks getting high and walking around Philly at night with my headphones on and a kind of fantasy cityscape emerged for me which informed the spark of the song.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

We don’t have any plans to do that right now. The song is pretty evocative and lends itself to people sitting there and making movies in their heads to accompany the song.

How was the recording and writing process?

Recording “Velvet” was really fun, most of that process took place in our warehouse studio in Philly. The song started on electric piano but it really started to become interesting when we added a modular synth arp during the first chorus. We worked out the structure quite a bit as it went too.

What role does Minneapolis play in your writing?

These days Minneapolis plays very little role in our writing. We’re all in Philadelphia except our drummer who is in New York but we did all meet in Minneapolis. Starting out in a small and supportive community like the one Minneapolis has did give us the confidence to explore new elements of our sound and know that people would still come out and see us.

Known for playing with different genres – do you try to balance them together or does one style tends to shine out the most depending on the lyrics’ themes?

I think especially now that we’ve been a band for some time and we’ve all moved cities we’re letting our lives dictate the music in an organic way. There are some natural style shifts that come with that as we get into different music and seek music for different effects. Recently I’ve been trying more than ever to make music that makes me feel good which may sound pretty obvious but that wasn’t exactly the approach I took with our previous records. I’m really looking forward to how this next record will come together, it is definitely a different beast than our previous ones.

Does your new single mean we can expect a new album – how’s that coming along?

For now, “Velvet” is just a standalone single we wanted to put out because it feels great to put out music. There is definitely an album in the works but the timeline for that is unknown at this point. In a lot of ways, we started working on this new album while we were recording As Far As Gardens Go, our last album. As far as we know, we’re actually writing songs for two albums from now as we’re working on this one and so on and so on in perpetuity.

Any tentative release date or title in mind?

Not even close. Personally, I think it’d be funny to call the album Carol by Carroll. Venues big and small all over the country have misspelled our name so many times, man. But that definitely won’t be the name of the album.

Any plans to hit the road?

We spent a lot of time last year on some pretty grueling tours, many of which were happening as we were trying to build lives and establish ourselves in new homes and cities. Right now, we’re pretty excited about integrating the recording and performing process into our domestic lives; cooking meals while we jam, sleeping in our own beds after shows. But we do have a really sick van and a Yelp account that needs updating so I predict we’ll be on the road at some point in the not so distant future.

What else is happening next in Carroll’s world?

Hopefully “Velvet,” is a precedent for what comes next in Carroll’s world in terms of just recording and putting out music on our own timeline. We put out “Velvet” not because we’re strategically promoting an album, it was just ready and we wanted to put out a song. Right now, we are our own recording studio and record label so that kind of freedom is really fun. Getting back on the road in the next year is definitely a priority. Not only do we love performing and traveling, we miss the creative energy you get from playing every night and bringing that power into songs you write on the road.

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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