A Chat With: Splashh
Almost every time a writer describes a band, the band's hometown or current location is brought into play (i.e. "the British band" or "the LA-based duo," etc.) Well, with this band, it's difficult to pinpoint an adjective based on their geographic ties, seeing as two members live in London, a couple of them live in NYC, and their newest member resides in Berlin...but they're all from Australia or New Zealand. Nonetheless, we caught up with the worldly rock group Splashh during their tour with Public Access T.V, while all of the band members resided together in a van currently traveling cross country. Although it's been over three years since Splashh's debut album Comfort first made waves, the band just recently announced their sophomore album's release on April 14th. We chatted with keyboardist Jaie Gonzalez all about the new album, the recent inauguration, staying sane on tour, and what's to come this year, prior to their show this Thursday at Schubas Tavern.
ANCHR Magazine: So let's talk a little bit about the new album and how tour is going so far. You kicked off tour the other day, in Washington D.C., right?
Jaie Gonzalez: Our first date was in Boston, and then Washington the day after that.
AM: How crazy was it to be in DC when the inauguration was going on?
JG: I mean, it was an amazing experience. It was really cool to be there at that time. We went to the march the next day...The Public Access dudes made a nice little event out of it, smashed a TV...it was good!
AM: Nice! What were some of the best signs that you saw at the march?
JG: Ah, some of the good signs…”Viva La Vulva” was pretty good. There’s so many good ones!
AM: I actually interviewed John from Public Access T.V a couple of weeks ago, and he mentioned that you guys would be doing this tour all together in a van.
JG: Oh yea, we’re in it right now…
AM: So how has that been going so far? Has anyone lost their mind yet?
JG: *laughs* Mostly, sanity is intact. Eleven boys in a van...it’s pretty calm actually at the moment. There’s been some cabin fever moments, definitely. The driving from Boston to DC was, just cause of all the traffic, a good 12 hours in the van. There was some loopy moments. We had a day off yesterday, though.
AM: Did you get up to anything cool on the day off?
JG: It was another long van day. We ended up at a middle-of-nowhere rest stop in North Carolina or something.
AM: How do you guys usually keep occupied during the long drives? Do you have a good playlist?
JG: Max from PATV has been doing a bulk of the DJing. Toto is making a flyer for our China tour right now. A lot of people with headphones and their phones.
AM: Nice! Talking a little more about the album now, you guys just announced last week that Waiting a Lifetime is the follow up to 2013’s Comfort. How does it feel to finally be getting a new album out after a few years?
JG: It feels great to have the record done. To just have a finished thing that we can listen to now, and don’t have to think about. We put a lot of love and time into it, so now that it’s finished we’re kicking into touring mode.
AM: Can you talk a little bit about the recording and writing process?
JG: Yea, well we recorded it at Rare Book Room Studios with Nicolas Vernhes. That’s been our first choice of where to make the record for a few years now. It was really great to have the opportunity to work there. Nico...we’d kind of been hassling him for years, getting him to come out to the shows. I guess we could just never afford him, but then we got this deal with the Cinematic Music Group and we could finally afford Nicolas... and we got him. He made the record that we hoped he would and it came out great. That’s been his studio for like twenty years, he lives above it...it’s a nice little place in Greenpoint. He made all the Deerhunter records there. A lot of records that we love were made there.
AM: Oh cool. So what was the songwriting process like, was it kind of spread out?
JG: Yea, the songs on the record are written pretty much over the past three years. The first single “Rings” was one of the first songs that me and Sasha wrote together. Basically when Sasha first came over to New York a couple years ago, we started writing songs and we would send them over to London to Toto and kind of bounce them back and forth between New York and London. Then some of the songs were written like a month before we went into the studio, and one was even written on the spot in the studio. It’s kind of like a greater sense of our past three years of writing.
AM: You just mentioned now that you some of you are based in New York now, and you have someone based in London...and originally you’re all from Australia and New Zealand. So do you think that the change in locations has had an impact on how you write, or even just your sound?
JG: Oh yeah, big time. It’s cool, I like that the past few years have kind of turned into a nowhere or an everywhere band. We’ve got a brand new drummer and he lives in Berlin. I live in New York, Toto and [Tom]Beal live in London, and Sasha is just a gypsy so he floats in between. I mean, now that we’re getting so deep into this touring we’re all kind of living together in this van.
AM: So you’ve got a lot of touring booked for this year and the new album...is there any other big news your fans can expect this year?
JG: Anything other than touring the world and putting out a record? Well...maybe. Stay tuned! There’ll be things. We’re gonna play in China, and hopefully Australia, our homeland. It should be cool. We’re excited to go back to Europe and play.
AM: What places are you most excited to head back to that you’ve already announced?
JG: Well we’re doing a big UK tour, and our London show is gonna be at a pretty interesting place. Somewhere down in Peckham in South London. I’m excited to play in Paris.
AM: For sure, that’s always a great city to go to! So what are some other bands that you’re listening to at the moment?
JG: Gee, Public Access T.V is pretty good. Any new records you’re into, Toto? Oh yeah, Promise Land. Best band in New York City.
AM: Cool, and what was the first concert you ever went to?
JG: The first concert I ever went to was...at 12 years old, my friend and I bought tickets to No Doubt.
AM: That’s an amazing first concert. Ok what about the last concert you went to, that wasn’t your own?
JG: That wasn’t my own... Hold on, let me think about this one second. I’m gonna say I saw Promise Land actually!