Friday, October 20, 2006

Mini-Interview: The Panda Band

Coming from Perth, Australia The Panda Band recently geared up to take over the US with their twisted, melodious indie pop rock in the form of a North American release of their long-awaited debut, This Vital Chapter, on Filter US Recordings (released on 9/12) and a potential US tour. During a break in their Australian tour, songwriter/singer/guitarist Damian Crosbie took time to answer some questions for RFSL sister site, Radio Free Chicago.

Where are you currently at? Any favorite moments from the tour?

I'm at home today as the Perth shows are this weekend. The tour's been amazing so far, so many highlights, but the second night in Sydney was a bit special. Some extra sing-along magic that night.

Any plans for a US tour?

We had to postpone our US tour plans coz the album took longer to finish but we should make it there before the end of the year still. I do hope and pray.

How would you describe your music, it's feel and sound? Are you influenced by anyone in particular?

Our music is quite filmic, as I tend to gain alot of inspiration from musicals and documentaries. Some songs are quite dream-like but still retain a spooky intensity which is amplified live. We all have such varied influences that it would be misleading to choose one, and probably more informative to people to name bands we remind listeners of. The usual names dropped are Pink Floyd, The Kinks The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Super Fury Animals, Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev, etc. Have you heard of them? Ha! You get the idea.

But most agree we're no retro band, we don't look like Oasis or anything, we look and sound like The Panda Band. We all come from Perth, which is a very isolated, spread out, young and un-spoilt city on the west coast of Australia. It's the only city on the west coast of Australia! It's kind of like San Diego, and people say we sound like our location.

How did approach the songwriting process on your debut album This Vital Chapter? (Which sounds amazing by the way.)

I take a lot of different approaches to creating songs, and this helps keep it exciting for me and help the songs have their own identities. Some come from a lyric idea ("We've Got The Face Of The Earth"), some a melody (like "Spanish Bride"), some from messing around with some random sounds on my computer("A Call To Your Arms"). It's never the same.

Who are you listening to right now?

I've been listening to Harry Nilsson As Time Goes By (...the complete Schmilsson in the night). It's wonderful. Another of my favorites is a fellow Perthian Jeff Strong, he's like a cross between Prince and Bob Dylan, mesmerising.

Interview by RFC's Carlos Garcia


Blogger Misa Garcia said...

Great Interview! Is there an audio track for it?

10:50 PM  

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