Sweet Sweet Music talked to Mike Adams about Casino Drone, the favorite song of his 3 year old son, tension in a catchy tune, Glen Campbell and trying to remain super cool.
Casino Drone is a power/indie pop gem. GEM!
Diem Be seems to be everybody’s favorite track. Is that a surprise to you or did you know you had something special right from the start?
It’s a bit of a surprise. We actually recorded a version of that song for a split 7″ with our pals Sleeping Bag a few years before Casino Drone came out. I wasn’t really planning on including it on the album, since it’d already been released, in a way.
But, when I was trying to decide what songs to put on the record I was listening to the recordings a lot in my car, and my son (who was 3 at the time) would often request “Diem Be” by name. It was his favorite one.
That’s when I started to think that maybe that song had a little more to it than I initially realized. If a kid likes it, it has to be kind of good, right?
Sounds like that track grew up in the studio. Or doesn’t that make any sense?
No, you totally got me. That song started out with that opening riff, I was just playing it over and over again in my studio at home until the rest of it started to unlock for me. It felt like a real Frankenstein for a while in the demo stages until we started playing it live and got comfortable with the transitions. It came a long way before we got to Casino Drone.
The Razorcake review says: “Diem Be” sounds like it might’ve been taken from a hardcore song. But that’s the feeling I have with more of the songs. The “it can explode now any minute”-feeling. That kind of tension, is that what you are looking for in a song?
I love tension in a catchy tune. It’s a comfortable and effective contrast for me. I grew up attending loads of hardcore shows in my hometown, so even though it’s mostly subconscious, it’s no surprise to me that that stuff leaks out once in a while.
I think Kurt (who wrote the review for Razorcake) and I come from a very similar background, so it’s cool that he recognizes that stuff in what I’m doing now.
Another side to that is that my entire life is about trying to remain super cool in the face of unspeakable tension and anxiety, ha! So, I’m happy that the music I’m making can effectively communicate that.
There was a day when a review like the AllMusic one would be bring stardom. The music industry changed, didn’t it?
I suppose it has, though I’m admittedly fairly ignorant of the industry. I’ve been making music in my various bedrooms with no money since I was a teenager. I loved doing it then, and I love doing it now. I take a certain amount of pride in what I’ve been able to accomplish just from curiosity and amassing years of experience and making mistakes.
I’d love to be a big fat rich guy with no worries, chowing on a turkey leg with my foot propped up on a gout stool someday thanks to my record-breaking album sales, but I also tend to think of music as this really primitive human thing that’s going to go on existing whether there’s an industry or not.
I’m baffled and content just to exist in some strange space between those two extremes.
She tells you she will decide on a 5-song-mix tape if there is going to be a second date. Which 5 would you put on?
“All Done Wrong” – Starflyer 59
“Like A Diamond” – Glass Ghost
“Tender When I Want To Be” – Mary Chapin Carpenter
“Wishing Now” – Glen Campbell
“Under Your Spell” – The Range of Light Wilderness
…this question is entirely too hard.
If you could tour the world with two other bands, which two would you chose?
Electric Light Orchestra, and Sound of Ceres
What will 2017 look like? How will you promote Casino Drone?
We’re doing some touring and playing a lot of shows around the midwest and the east coast of the USA this spring. I’d like to start recording again by the summer.
Although, we’ve yet to play abroad, so if anyone reading this wants to make that happen, I’m all ears!
Mike Adams at His Honest Weight @ Daytrotter