Lund Bros – Across State Lines

Chris and Sean Lund have released another great record with Across State Lines. Immaculate Heavy Power Pop.

Chris explains to Sweet Sweet Music that he can therefore brag a little about the new songs. He is right. 

What was the moment you knew you were on to something?

As far as the new record goes, it has to be the initial reaction which has been very good and the response very rapid.  Really nice. 

Historically speaking, we realized we had something special when back in the early 90s, Sean and I ditched the front-man singer idea as these folks never seemed to interpret the songs I was writing at the time the way I wanted to hear them.  So, one day we were sitting around goofing off at my mom’s house in the living room with just an acoustic guitar and started singing some Beatles songs we both knew.  Instantly, we were able to harmonize.  At that point, we started doing the vocals ourselves.  It became more harmony-based singing with the still crunchy rock backing, making us unique among many of the other bands at the time. Many bands either don’t try or are not able to do tight harmony funnily enough.

How did this record come together?  

This record came together as a result, or rather in spite of, a geographical distance between my brother Sean and myself.  We worked independently out of our home studios and decided to put together a record.  I was quite surprised how nicely all the tracks flowed together and seemed to be derived from the same artistic palette.

When did you decide to start asking for opinions on the new songs?

I can only speak for myself here.  Not until after the record was finished – just to see what tracks people might have as favorites and/or what songs might be go-to tracks for radio podcasts and such. 

The meaning of success has changed over the years. What would success look like for the new record?  

Success would be selling several thousand records or more in the short run, be it compact discs and/or maybe later some vinyl.  Streaming isn’t as exciting aesthetically as it’s not the entire artist’s vision like a complete record. We are influenced and consider ourselves to be making “Album Rock” – though the tracks still can stand alone as singles, the big picture is ideally more important.   

How great is the urge to stay creative?  To keep writing songs and lyrics?

Great, though it often occurs in spurts. 

As an artist, you choose to show your emotions to the world. Is it always comfortable to do so?

I’m very confident these days.  Besides, my lyrics tend to be conscience streaming a lot of the time, which leaves room for some interpretation from the listener.  I don’t write too many rants.  Sean has a little more of a storyteller approach, but I suspect he’s pretty comfortable with what he’s expressing. 

What’s the gig you will always remember? And why?

One of the last gigs we did before the Covid pandemic shut down the clubs happened to be a really good one.  It was at the Spanish Ballroom in Tacoma, WA.  A charming theatre and stage, good sound, great response, and an energetic performance.  One of my former guitar students played bass for us, which was cool.   

Lyrics are too often taken for granted.  What is the line of text, or are the lines of text that you hope listeners will remember?  And why?

It’s got to be a line from my anti-tech screed on the new record.  The song is called “Killin’ Me,” and the line goes:  “High Speed is over-rated when they now ask you to do –  twice the work you used to – now you’re feeling F-ing screwed”.

When was the last time you thought, ‘I just wrote a hit!’?

I think that a lot, but still waiting.  Ha Ha

Playing music in front of a crowd. What’s all the fun about?

The push and pull communication and rapport with the audience and the release of nervous energy in a positive way. Also, just hanging out after the show is a real blast.

You can’t control the way people ‘hear’ your music. But if you could make them aware of certain aspects, you think, set your songs apart. What would they be?

The songwriting.  At the risk of sounding arrogant, I feel it’s very strong.

Suppose you were to introduce your music to new listeners through three songs. Which songs would those be and why?

Enjoy the Fire off Loser for its raw power, acid guitar, and psychedelic groove.  Come On off International Pop Overthrow for its big hook chorus and vaudeville time-change.  Perhaps for the softer side, I like Power Lines off IPO for its Byrds-like harmonies and lyrical analogy. Those songs are perhaps good touch-points or introductions to our music.

If you could tour the world with two other bands, who would you ask, and why?

Regarding current bands who are well-known, it would be The Struts and The Darkness – relatively well-known bands who could give us a leg up perhaps and are stylistically similar.  I like their music as well, of course.

What compliment you once received will you never forget?

We were called “Tacoma’s Badfinger”, which, of course, made me smile as I really respected their songwriting and musicianship.  Admittedly, they are a big influence for me. 

What place do you occupy in the music industry?

Outcasts, really – or maybe a cult thing.  I’ll bet a lot of purveyors of Power Pop and hook-based guitar rock feel that way these days.  

The record is done, the music is out.  Is the best fun done now or is it just beginning?

Just beginning.  Once again, I feel completing a record brings with it a little bit of bragging rights.  This reminds me of a time when I was wearing a shirt that I did as promo merch for my solo record a couple years ago.  This gal at the table says, “You’re such a narcissist.  I should just make a shirt with a picture of myself and wear it”.  I thought for a moment and replied, “Well, you’d have to make a record first”.  

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