Peopleodian Session - August 2011

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This Session
Violitionist Sessions

Session Date: July 18, 2011
Posting Date: August 29, 2011
Artist Hometown: Denton, TX
Links:, Facebook, Twitter
Recorded by: Michael Briggs

A Muddy Dream
Come On Let’s Stay

ONE: Why did you start using the Nintendo DS as an instrument?
James Washington: Well, it’s a cheap, streamlined synthesizer and sequencer, all in one. It makes it easy to quickly come up with ideas and then trial-and-error to write the songs, so I was able to write a lot of songs and then abandon more than half of them, to where I’m able to come up with songs very quickly. They’re definitely the best songs I’ve ever been able to come up with. But, we don’t really use it as a chiptunes thing, we’re not approaching it from that angle – I just approach it from that it’s the easiest way for me to do the songwriting that I do.
TWO: Is the use of visual effects (TVs, costumes, etc) important to your live performance?
Chris Bryan: Yeah, I think so.
James: [Whispering] Say no! Say no!
Joe Cepeda Overman: Oh yeah…no. [Laughs]
Ally Hoffman: We’re not allowed to say.
Joe: It’s because people get bored.
Chris: Well, from really early on we knew we wanted to have some visual elements, and dressing in uniform color schemes or things like that, or with the TV or the projector…it’s just kind of adding to the whole idea of the band, and there are some concepts on the album associated with TV…
BF: I saw you at Dan’s Silverleaf, when you screened a movie, and then played afterwards…
Ally: That’s the first time that we used the projector. It was funny, too, because it just said ‘Dell’ most of the time.
James: The first show that we had was just me playing. It was in August of 2009, and the reason I brought the TV in and all of the video loops was so that people wouldn’t get bored just watching a dude playing around on a keyboard, and then we just stuck with that element and we’ve worked with the TV element from there on. We’ve worked with that theme and kind of broadened it to where we were eventually projecting images onto ourselves and doing unique things with the TV and using that…
Joe: We’re also selling advertising space. We have short segments of songs — in fact, most of the TV elements on the album, like, our song “Tide is a Good Detergent”…that’s probably going to be our big hit.
BF: Are the loops that you produce set to a certain song, or is it random?
James: The loops…?
Chris: The video loops.
James: Oh! No, no, it’s random. It uses the psychological trick where it makes you think that it’s actually like, syncing up; and then I would mess with the V-Hold and then sometimes, depending on how many drugs you’d done, you would think that it’s actually synced up with the music, and I think it’s really effective.
Ally: Definitely, when we first started playing, I didn’t sing on a whole lot of songs, so there’s a good portion of these loops that I just have memorized because I’m just up there, and I’m like, “Oh, I guess I’ll watch this…Oh, why is that black man staring at me!?”
BF: I like the little bird.
James: Yeah, the bird is one of my favorites. The one that walks backwards…doesn’t he walk backwards?
Ally: Wasn’t there a guy who did ball tricks for a while?
Joe: I liked the freaking out Asian man.
Chris: It’s funny that we’ve had the same— we’ve had it long enough, and added to it, but like—
James: Yeah, I need to make a new video. There was a huge portion, for a year, where it was just the same video, and then I added another maybe ten minutes to it, but I just need to go in and overhaul the whole thing. But that video has been with us. I found out that the website is the first thing that we had, and then we had the video, and then we had the shows and the other musicians.[Laughs]
THREE: Any details on when you’ll release your album?
Joe: Yeah…James?
James: Well, the…no. [Laughs]
Ally: No, we’re not allowed.
James: No.
Ally: I feel like this should be on video.
Chris: No, I don’t think so.
Ally: I do.
James: Let’s just say, it’s something that we’ve been working on daily for the past three years, so hopefully it will turn out good.
Ally: There we go. It’s all recorded.
James: We recorded it at the Echo Lab around September, October, November, and December of last year, and we’ve been kind of mixing it since, and hopefully it will be released this year.
Joe: It’s our first album, so…
James: We’re also doing things on the side to go along with it—
Joe: Like having affairs.
Chris: We’re plugging things, guys! We have to be quiet while we plug!
James: We’re going to do a bonus EP of piano versions of the songs, maybe five of them. And we’ll have a glow in the dark t-shirt or something —something to get the kids excited.
Ally: Lunchboxes, thermoses, thermicide?
Joe: Thermostats, thermal underwear, theremins…
James: We’re definitely having that EP and a glow in the dark shirt. That’ll seal it.
Chris: Yeah, I think so.
James: I want everything that we do to glow.

[After the session, Peopleodian informed us that they plan to release two EPs in the coming months. The first, called It Woke the Moon, will be released on October 25th, with the second to follow.]