Your Weekend Playlist, Courtesy of The Garden
The twin brothers Wyatt and Fletcher Shears (The Garden) first paved their way onto the music scene in 2011, and then with the release of their debut album The Life and Times of a Paperclip in 2013. Shortly after, the born and raised Orange County duo gained major popularity; with additional EP’s and singles, the brothers graced the runway shows of Yves Saint Laurent and Hugo Boss. Recently, they released their fourth album Kiss My Super Bowl Ring channeling their infamous experimental punk style or as they like to call it “Vada Vada” (an idea that represents pure creative expression, that disregards all previously made genres.) Milk caught up with The Garden to hear about their latest record and their favorite songs.
While listening to your playlist, I noticed a wide range of different music from jungle to country. Why these songs in particular?
Fletcher Shears: I think we’ve just always been into all types of music. We were ‘raised’ on punk, DNB and some other things but as far back as I can remember, I have just been into discovering new music. I spent a big part of my childhood and teenage years looking for new music that I haven’t heard and getting very excited on whatever I found. So I think naturally we just have influences from all over the map. There is always a drive to keep discovering.
Wyatt Shears: On a weekly basis, these are songs I shuffle through, to be real. They all make me feel good in some type of way. It’s a random mix, but music is music.
How would you define your music taste?
FS: I don’t know. I try my best not to define anything in my life because I’m always changing.
WS: I’m not sure I have a taste necessarily. I find myself liking all genres, but I am definitely picky about melodies and such. No matter the style, it has to have something to hook me in.
Out of all the songs selected from your playlist, which is your favorite and why?
FS: I don’t think I have an all-time favorite or anything. But I have been listening to Del and Fuerza Regida a lot more lately.
WS: Maybe, Midland? It makes me think of places and times in my life that are positive.
How has your diverse taste influenced the way you make music?
FS: I think it just keeps my mind open to new directions and sounds all of the time. Our albums don’t typically sound like one specific thing. I think it just comes from the array of influences we have that spread far. We don’t deliberately try to make it all sound different, I think it just happens naturally for that reason.
WS: For me, it helps to inspire. The more you listen, the more inspired you may get. You can take little pieces from what you listen to and make something on your own that becomes a part of that
Speaking of that, congrats on your album release Kiss My Super Bowl Ring. How was the process of putting it together? Any exciting or challenging moments while creating?
WS: I started demo-ing for this release after Mirror Might Steal Your Charm, in 2018. So, I’d been trying to craft what I wanted this album to sound like for a minute now. Throughout the demo process, sometimes you come up with something that you love, but you don’t end up wanting to use it for an album. In 2019, I made a rough demo for “Thy Mission” and Fletcher and I ended up re-recording that and dropping it before any word of an album.
Fletcher and I separately will make demos and constantly send them back and forth to each other over long periods of time. Then, we organize those demos into what we think could be an album and go re-record them all in a studio somewhere. Some demos may not make it out of the studio, but eventually, we have an album out of that.
FS: If I’m being honest, I was in a pretty claustrophobic space in my life while we were recording this together. Very unhappy and fighting with myself. A lot of problems in my life I was trying to weave through, but at the same time, I was really excited about what we were making, and I still am. It’s my favorite thing we’ve created together to this date.
How did the name of the album come about?
FS: Wyatt came up with the name. I think I might have suggested that it be the name of the album. It was a song name before an album name. It’s a response to how we have been feeling, a “fuck you” of sorts. A reaction to discontent I guess and I think you can feel that in the album.
WS: Yeah, he pretty much said it.
How did it feel listening to Kiss My Super Bowl Ring as a whole after being mastered?
WS: Usually I am hyped on what we record for around a month and then it slowly fades and I’ll just revisit it from time to time. KMSBR feels different though, which is great. I’ve been listening to it almost every day since we recorded it last year. I am really proud of it.
FS: I get the same feeling every time I listen to it. I’m just proud of it. I think we are always reaching for this imaginary unattainable goal that keeps us progressing as a unit. I believe this is as close as we’ve ever gotten. Couldn’t be more happy with it. It exceeded the expectations I never had.
You’ll be going on tour very soon, which songs from the album are you most excited to perform?
FS: Honestly all of them. There is a new set of challenges with these songs technically, but it wouldn’t really be a Garden album without a proper obstacle.
WS: Hmmm.. that’s a hard question. On previous albums, we’ve left songs out of the set, but we’ll be playing the entirety of KMSBR all the time, every time. I guess as of right now “AMPM Truck” sounds the most fun.
If you could perform Kiss My Super Bowl Ring anywhere, where would it be?
FS: I’m not sure. A good handful of countries will end up seeing it. But I’m just happy playing it wherever.
WS: I’m excited to debut it in Los Angeles. I think it’s about time.
Lastly, what’s a must-hear song before you go on stage?
FS: I know it’s boring but I don’t usually listen to anything. The quiet before the storm usually gives me enough adrenaline before I’m blasted with loud music for an hour. I think I listened to “Spray Paint” by Black Flag before our last show in Chicago.
WS: I don’t have a must-hear song, but listening or watching old 79’- 83’ punk footage gets me in the mood.
Video courtesy of Aalany McMahan.
Stay tuned to Milk for more Weekend Playlists.