Our feature spotlight for the month of June is the band Andare. Lead man Shaun was kind enough to answer our normal local band questions. You can also find their music streaming throughout the interview. Also find links to their sites at the bottom.
How did the band come together? Were you all friends that went to school?
Ironically I (shaun) had just moved back from Austin Texas, at the same time as kris's band Bought In Blood had just broken up. Kris and i had been childhood best friends, and he threw the idea out there to start something once i had told him about my failure in texas. we both had a common thought that if we were going to do this, it had to be very different sounding and big, the kind of big where all of your chips are in this pot.
How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?
Definitely dark, ambient, and a stray from typical. The EP 'The Mechanical Sunrise' was written from a very nostalgic and heart torn feeling, and evoccs a more dreading kind of emotion the closer you listen. We're actually not big fans of todays metal genre like we used to be, so we take a lot of influence from outside our genre from what we think is a more creative musicianship.
Are you all originally from the Pittsburgh area? Families here as well?
All of us are from Pittsburgh, families as well. We have an aspiration to move as a band though, it would be awesome.
Do you all create music full time or is this more of a part time venture?
It is a heavily anticipated full-time, but for now there are a few expenses needed before we can do that. Full time is the plan though, and we're very anxious to get to that point
Do you have day jobs?
All of us but myself, but in exchange i do a lot of promoting and artwork for us
How do you create your music? What is the song writing process?
For this EP kris would write guitar and drum parts and I would work over some parts with him. the lyrics were written myself, and jordan will tweak the drum parts with his style. We're actually starting to change that for the next writing though, kris will do some vocals, jordan will write more himself, and we're going to jam a little more than we did on this recording. Before we were a four-piece, we had a second guitarist and it was a little difficult to have so many hands in the cookie jar, but we're more connected now.
What are your goals for the band? What would you like to accomplish? Are you trying to get signed to a label?
Are goals are easily to never stop writing music, and definitely get far with our art. The easiest thing with us is to unify over this goal. We would especially love to accomplish playing a waken festival in Germany, hahaha but we have a lot of work to do for that one! We would love to have the help of a label, but we're mostly concerned with being self sufficient with everything we do in writing our best music possible and trying to get better tour opportunities.
What advice would you give to local acts trying to make it?
The most important thing is your music, for sure. Nothing gets you anywhere if your music just means the world to you, what band can say their music doesn't? You really have to craft it from the most artistic parts of your heart, just the way a painter would never paint someone else's painting with just a few alterations. We're big believers about the power of writing original music, and we stress to other bands how your music is the true value in why you're here. Never forget that
Have you all toured nationally? Or do you usually stay more regionally?
National touring is next on the list, regionally is what we are currently doing while we save money. It's funny how money is always an obstacle for most bands, but we anticipate being able to leave our jobs for a national touring schedule for now. See you soon cali ;)
Being in the Pgh area, do you find it more difficult to try and succeed?
What are some of the obstacles you face trying to create some 'success' in Pgh?
We feel we don't fit in with other bands a lot of times with how we view our music, and the direction we want to take our music in. It might seem silly, most people think all heavy bands should play shows with any other heavy band because they're all the same, but that's exactly why we don't want to. We see ourself in a more specific direction and it can just get hard to get the right bands by your side. In Pgh, there is a lot more awareness rising against pay to play as well, which is a constant issue with some of the venues and promoters, making it hard to do all of the things necessary to play a show. We think this is one of many reasons why Pittsburgh's music scene struggles
What are the positive benefits of being in the area?
If you lift up the right rocks, there are some really good bands, with some really talented musicians that deserve a lot more credit than they receive.
Is there a venue you have enjoyed playing more than others in the area?
We enjoy the Blue Violate Cafe, their promoter Jeff is fair guy and runs things from a band member perspective. We'd like to see more venues pop up in pittsburgh in the future