'Twin Peaks' Lives On In This Great Indie Band
Naming your band after one of the most beloved cult TV shows of all time can go one of two ways: 1) You become the target of superfandom hate. Or 2) Everyone gets past the Lynchian reference and decides to listen to the music instead. Thankfully for Twin Peaks, the garage/indie rock back from Chi-town, the reception to their music has been so positive that it’s overshadowed the Laura Palmer/Dale Cooper saga allusion – and it’s not without credit.
Having just released their third album, Down In Heaven, earlier this year, the guys of Twin Peaks (Cadien Lake James, Clay Frankel, Jack Dolan, Colin Croom, and Connor Brodner), have proven they can change and grow, yet still sound as honest as when they began. In fact, growing up is something the Illinois boys consistently explore, with lyrics encapsulating everything from heartache to being young and wild and free. Mid tour, Jack Dolan (vocals and bass), gave us an insight into why the band is one of the most refreshingly reckless acts in the alternative scene today (hint: it includes broken limbs, arrests, and getting inspired by the oldest muse – life).
Down in Heaven is your third album, and although growth is evident, you still retain a characteristic sound. Do you consider your albums to be continuations of each other or are they stand alone independent pieces?
I think that at the end of the day we’re always going to retain a certain “sound” that we’ve always kind of had. That just comes from playing music and recording together for so long and really picking up on the little differences in each of our styles. I always look back on each album like individual moments in our lives, and what is now our career.
Is there a particular message you guys wanted to share with this album, or would you rather the listener interpret your music however they please?
A healthy dose of both. It’s boring when artists try to be super relatable or have a message that they’re trying to push. Artists are interesting because they’re different from others, that’s why they make art. We’re never trying to push anything specifically, because as songwriters we write similar music, but we’re still different people with different ideas and ways of life. The cool thing about having four different songwriters is the message is never secure, it’s always a little different as you go.
“It’s melancholy and it’s upbeat and it’s depressing and it’s rad.”
Your music is divided between melancholic songs and super fun upbeat ones. Do you find sadness or happiness more inspiring to create? Is it a mixture of both?
I think we just get inspired by life, which is exactly that. It’s melancholy and it’s upbeat and it’s depressing and it’s rad. We’re 22 now and we’ve been seriously touring since we were 18, so we didn’t grow out of our teenage years into adulthood like everyone else. We learned things and experienced life a lot differently then most kids our age did so there’s a lot going on in our music that tries to touch on that. What it’s like to be growing up like this, basically. I’m sure someone might find that fascinating haha.
You’re on tour now. What is the wildest thing that’s happened so far?
Shit happens literally all the time, and most of it should not be put on paper. KDN broke his leg in New Orleans once while we were on tour with the Orwells, Colin almost went to prison in Mexico, I broke into and slept in a vacant motel room recently—and these are the relatively tame stories.
What is your earliest memory of music?
My dad used to sing me songs from Rubber Soul before I would go to bed when I was a little boy.
If you could relive a day of your life, which would it be?
Well I’m not a fan of fucking with the space-time continuum, but if I must pick a day off the top of my head I would say last summer me and most of my friends loaded into a van and went to Six Flags for the day and I ate like three pot brownies and rode roller coasters all day with my buds. But I can always just go back this summer.
All your albums have been recorded in differing circumstances. What was the starkest difference between the making of this album and the others?
The biggest difference with this one was by far the environment and the amount of time we had to work on it. Our first record was recorded in about a week and a half in KDN’s basement with GarageBand and a couple condenser mics. The last one we did in a little more then two weeks at a studio in Chicago right in the middle of a polar vortex, so it was like negative 15 degrees or something, we couldn’t really go anywhere. For this one we had a super flexible time frame, so we took advantage of that and ended up working on it for almost an entire summer. We bought all the equipment ourselves and stayed on this beautiful estate in Massachusetts just recording and relaxing and taking in the surroundings.
Who is your favorite character from Twin Peaks, and what are you most excited to see in the revival?
My first thought goes immediately to my girl Audrey, but Dale is obviously the man as well. I guess I’m just interested in how it all plays out! And we’ll continue to check our emails for any impending lawsuits…
What’s your motto?
“Run It Again.”
If your music were a place, where would it be?
On the hot wet beaches of Chicago, IL.
Check out Down in Heaven from Twin Peaks, available here.
All images courtesy of Pitch Perfect PR
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