INTERVIEW: Handsomebeast

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

Thank you for having us! We been grindin’ daily.

Can you talk to us a little more about your new single, “Playboi?”

Playboi is the beginning of a new era of songwriting for us.  We started experimenting more with minimalism, and caught a momentum in writing in more of a sauve musical style. We’ve also started interlacing the visual components of the band with the musical. The Playboi video is the first installment in a series that follows around this character (the Playboi) and his inner circle (the goons) and their exploits. We’re thinking Scarface meets Boogie Nights. There’s romance, violence….a little something for everybody.

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

We were watching a ton of classic mob/heist movies at the time, and wondered “what would Ocean’s 14 look like?” We wanted to experience the benefits of a life of crime, without actually committing any crimes.

How was the recording and writing process?

Nick (singer): I’m gonna tell it to you straight, VENTS Magazine: the writing process started out quite drunkenly. I had just gotten dropped off by an Uber (Lyft maybe? idk) at my apartment complex after a pleasant night out on the town. At that time, I had been messing with this little baby beat I had started making on garage band on my phone, and I felt inspired to lay some hot bass down on the track. I took out the phone and in a moment of inebriated inspiration, started playing the bassline to the song by poking at the digital bass strings on my tiny phone screen. It felt goofy, and I can only assume I looked even goofier, stumbling around that parking lot, but damn was it effective. Vocal melodies started flowing like wine shortly after. I brought the demo to the goons the very next day, and we recorded the thing for real at our studio. Peewee (guitarist) put some Joe Walsh on the thing, and the song basically finished itself in a day.

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

The experience was quite literally a blur. We drove to New Orleans and shot the entire video in one day. Richard White of Loaded Records shot and edited the whole thing. Not only is he a charming young man, full of life and mystery, but he is a genius behind the lens. One of the most fun experiences we’ve had as a band.

What role does Houston play in your writing?

I wouldn’t say that Houston necessarily affects the musical style or genre of the band, but it absolutely affects the lifeblood of the group. Houston is a hardworking city, and we all work long hours at day jobs, drive sometimes an hour just to make sure we can get together and practice, and sit in traffic all day listening to and daydreaming about music, etc, etc. We also grill, fish, toss the pigskin, and gorge ourselves on some of the best mexican food you can get. We are all of latin decent, and feel a connection with the multi-cultural diversity of the city. Houston is a thriving city, but only got that way through constant struggle. We feel connection to that struggle. Obviously you have the massive stuff — like Hurricane Harvey — but then there’s the more day to day difficulties like dealing with 100 degree heat with 100% humidity, or sifting through perpetual traffic and construction in the 627 miles of the greater Houston area.

If you’ve never been to Texas, there’s a whole unique lifestyle here. And we love bringing some of that Texan charm and pride with us when we visit new cities on the road.

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

We originally set out to focus on writing singles, but through that process, an album started developing. We have at least 10 songs now, but will probably end up with closer to 30 to choose from and whittle down into an album by the end. Only the mightiest swimmers will survive.

Any tentative release date or title in mind?

I’d probably expect the album to come out in late 2019. We have many titles circulating, but those are top secret. I’m sure you understand.

Any plans to hit the road?

Yes! Repeatedly. We are doing a run up the east coast from September 13-22. We’re hitting Memphis, Asheville, NYC, Philly and DC. We’ll be doing some publicity trips in there as well to hype up Playboi and a follow up single (hit? hopefully? probably?).

Through the end of the year and next year, we’re really going to be focusing on hitting some of the big music cities around us like Austin, New Orleans, and even out to Nashville and everywhere in between.

We went to college and formed the band in New Orleans, so we try to frequent that glorious city as often as we can. Also that’s where we go to win big.

We have an awesome audience in DC (Nick was born and raised there. The only non-native Texan) and so we’ll of course be hitting up those east coast cities again as well.

What else is happening next in Handsomebeast’s world?

More singles. More money. More problems. More fame. And many more videos on our IG (check out @handsomebeasttx for hot, hot, hilarious content).

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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