Ganglians Interview

ganglians jungle Ganglians Interview

We chat with Sacramento’s Ganglians about their upcoming album and their new video for the track Jungle. The album wont be out till August 23rd but right now if you pre-order Still Living you can get free goodies! The first 100 pre-orders will receive a free limited edition poster, and the first 50 pre-orders will  receive a free cassette of the album. Pre-order via Lefse here.

s.o.t.r-You recently released a trippy and nostalgic laced music video for the tune Jungle. How did the idea of using prosthetics emerge?

Ganglinas- That was all Pete. Pete is a friend of ours who lives in London and was in this amazingly original and historic band that anyone is cool knows about called Graffiti Island. We’d been mutual admirers of each other for awhile and finally met when they stayed at my house after a show in Sacramento while they were on tour in the US in 2009. We were in London a couple times during the summer and fall and all hung out and Pete mentioned he wanted to do a music video for us so I sent him a few songs we were working on at the time and he chose Jungle and told me his idea for it which pretty much from the get go involved prosthetics. I had no question he would do right by us and we’d always been fans of Pete’s artistic choices and  so we were thrilled to have him do our first video. We’re very careful about picking who we work with but honestly I knew we had nothing to worry about.
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s.o.t.r-Your new record Still Living is set to be released in late August. Was the original plan to make it a double LP or did it just materialize into that during the recording?

Ganglinas- It just turned out that way, an album with us is usually an ambitious prospect as opposed to an EP or a 7″. The old concepts of what an album could be are kind of lost today. Not that 30 min roller-coaster ride albums don’t rule, they’re just a different kind of album. This might be an album that takes some time to click with allot of people who are used to that and I hope people take the time to listen to it all the way through. The second half is very different from the first half.
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s.o.t.r- How was working with producer Robby Moncrieff? How exactly did that come about? Was his presence something you envisioned from the start of the album or did he come in during a midway point?

Ganglinas- We were actually originally planning on recording with Andy Morin who had allot to do with the first album Monster Head Room. We recorded a couple songs with him, one of which, “My House”, made it on the album. At the time we were ready to do the rest of the thing Andy was out of town and we knew we wanted to get started right away so we contacted our friend Robby who had moved back from  Portland to Sacramento about doing the album since he had told us before he wanted to do it. Andy is amazing, he’s involved in another Sacramento project that is mind blowing and gaining steam right now but I think it was fate as Robby was perfect for the time. He really brought out another side of us sonically we’d been hoping for. I told him what we wanted before hand and he did it. I think we wanted to go allot of places with this album and so we did, that probably has to do allot with the length.
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s.o.t.r-How would you say Still Living differs from your last album Monster Head Room?  And how do you see the band developing post-Still Living?
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Ganglians-I will always love Monster Head Room because it was ambitious and was the way we really came together as a band for the first time but I feel it lacked the focus of this album. We were still figuring things out. Some of my favorite albums are those kind of playful anything goes albums where a band is reaching for something high but can’t quite get it out of small means or lack of experience, way more endearing though! When the world gets sick of overproduced hyper intellectual recordings these are the things people will fall back on, hard.  I know I do.
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s.o.t.r-Gangilans are known best as an acid pop or psychedelic band. Does the process of labeling in the music world ever leave you feeling pigeonholed or do you see it as a quick way to introduce people to what sound you might be producing?

Ganglinas- Psychedelic is such a broad term. Most music is psychedelic but people almost always attribute it to the time in music when everyone was “doing” psychedelics. I’m not a fan of labeling even though it can be helpful, it can be harmful to the people who make it if they don’t want it. Do we have a more traditional 4-piece band set up through some songs, yes, does that mean there’s not still allot of innovations to made from it, no. We’re not in the studio to “cut records”. It’s a time of growth.
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s.o.t.r-How much does the feel of Sacramento/Southern CA influence your sound?

Ganglinas-Sacramento has such a legacy of great bands but no one’s really paid much attention geographically. These days I think people do because it’s not one of your major metropolitan cities and people kind of remember that there has been a great past here. It’s always Brooklyn, San Francisco, LA. Those cities have established character, maybe they’re really enjoyable to live in. I don’t hear too many people wanting to move to Sacramento, it’s not a destination. You get little respect from your own city, you’re on the fringes and I don’t think many people want to deal with that. Everyone wants to be part of something big that’s already there, not make it happen themselves. That had allot to do with everything i suppose. When we started almost no one was trying to do pop music. It was like a dirty word in a town that’s usually only big enough for one scene at a time as silly as that sounds. We had to prove it to people and ourselves that there was something new there. We were definitely not doing that right out of the gate though. One of our friends who’s a big supporter of us now at one time said they thought we were the “worst band in Sacramento”.
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s.o.t.r-You all are undergoing a big tour this summer in promotion of Still Living, what would say has been the most memorable tour event so far?

Ganglinas- Primavera of course, even if it wasn’t our best show. It’s just the best time. Other than that I would definitely say the ferry ride from Stockholm to Helsinki. It’s not like any other ferry I’ve been on!
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s.o.t.r-You guys have steadily been getting more and more press from sites like Stereogum and Pitchfork. How has the transition to being one of the better-known bands on the indie circuit been?

Ganglinas-It’s been surprising definitely, but it’s nice to be elevated from the rest of the lo-fi garage rock scene, if we’re even beholden to that anymore. I hope people see us as trying to elevate the music beyond all that. I envision songs as musical numbers allot of the time, that’s pretty far away from all the 2-3 minute, blazed verse/chorus/verse garage song. If allot of people aren’t pleasantly surprised or even disgusted by allot of what we’ve done on this new album than we haven’t done our job. Not that it’s a job, that’s the wrong way to think of it. We’re not doing it to jump through hoops.
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s.o.t.r-What are your plans for the rest of 2011?

Ganglinas-No plans, just expanding. Looking forward to playing live again though the studio is where all the fun is.

Interview by: Stephanie Glass

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