Hey dudes, so, I asked an interview with the good guys from Baltimore Cults, and they were kind
(crazy) enough to take it.
You can check their badcamp here : http://baltimorecults.bandcamp.com/
And you can check their facebook here: Baltimore Cults
Sean- Guitar/ Vocals
1.What’s the Unknown Parts of Philadelphia emo scene?
John: Hmm, good question! I think a lot of friendships are created through shows in Philly, and that's something you might not see on the surface, at least from an outsider's perspective. I mean, you could make the case any scene really has that, but I don't know, something about the shows in Philly. An example: I was at a show not too long ago, and a guy I didn't know started a conversation with me. Turns out he loves the Philly music vibe and moved from new york to live here and experience it first hand. That's something I'm hearing more and more lately, which I think is the coolest thing. I take a lot of pride in Philadelphia, her faults and all, and hearing things like that makes me happy and proud to call Philadelphia my home.
Sean: I feel like a lot of the time it's the bands that aren't getting as much buzz from the internet or are just keeping their heads low and playing shows. The scene is at a pretty cool place right now and I feel like things are starting to change in terms of sound. I don't know, most of the time I just feel lucky to live so close to it.
2.How was the process of recording the Parts Unknown EP?
John: Honestly, the recording process this time around felt so relaxed and came very natural. We recorded at Headroom with Joe Reinhart, and he made the process painless. The environment was great and we had a very relaxed session. Never once did it feel like we were forcing anything or rushing to get something done. We had plenty of time to listen to the tracks and tweak or add something to the mix. I think that really helped to form a record we can be proud of.
Sean: It was good times, especially the last day of mixing when a band was filming a music video literally right outside the door. It was a great experience though, we changed the concept of what the EP was going to be constantly.We had enough material to try and do a full length but we decided to take our time with a smaller number of songs and I think it was the right decision.
3.Do you guys gig a lot? How are the reactions of your audience when you play?
John: We actually haven't gigged for a while now. During the school months, 2 out of the 5 members are about 200 miles away, so we decided we would spend our time writing and practicing and writing and practicing (we've done it a lot lol). We played fairly often when we were in high school, but our sound has definitely changed since then so we wanted to wait until we had new material out before we start to play again. We are scheduled to graduate this year, so this summer we plan to start playing again with new our new material.
Sean: Just check out robins (robins.bandcamp.com) and see them bass-less near you! (...if you are near Philadelphia)
John: Robins is the band I write for. It's basically baltimore cults if baltimore cults was obsessed with midwest emo and screamo. we gig more often because we all still live near the city, but I'm stoked to have the guys finish up school so the cults can start playing again!
4.What are the things you learned being in a band that you never learned in some crap routine job?
John: I think being in a band has taught us all how to deal with conflict effectively. Being with the same people day in and day out can start to take its toll, but playing in a band with my best friends has made that a little easier. Since we are all friends, we don't let problems pester, we deal with them as soon as they sprout up because we can be honest with one another. I think conflict resolution is the biggest real world application being in band has had on me. Shit, if I can't tell my band that something isn't working or something needs to be fixed, who can I?
Sean: That working to make the most money possible is usually an empty lifestyle. I love doing what I do with my best friends.
5.What are the bands you recently fell in love?
John: For me, personally, I've been into Free Throw a lot lately, the new Park Jefferson LP, Panucci's Pizza put out an awesome full length, P.S. 118, Airman Trout, Milkshakes, Lana Lana, and Bonjour Machines are all bands that I find myself listening to the most.
Sean: The new Bonjour Machines album rules. Vietnam's new record is too good, I've been listening to Things Fall Apart a ton as well. Glocca Morra just put out a split with Summer Vacation that's sick, and the 2013 summer demo from Mallard is awesome, too. Oh, and Kelsi Grammar is unreal and everyone should listen.
6.You just recorded a new EP. Are there any plans for next year?
John: Well, "Parts Unknown" is going to be put out on tape by Billy at Too Far Gone Records (awesome dude who has been nothing but an awesome dude to us) in October. Moving forward, we are writing a full length tentatively titled "My Mind Goes to Dark Places" that we hope to start recording by mid 2014. Other than that, we're going to start setting up some shows, as well, so we're hoping 2013-2014 is going to be busy for us!
Sean: Thanx to Billy and Too Far Gone for releasing the EP. Plans for next year involve graduating college and pretending to be a real adult. John covered all the band stuff, so I just got personal.
7.The cover of Parts Unknown is so beautiful. Who took the picture and how this idea came over?
John: Thank you! The artwork was done by a co-worker of mine and Philadelphia based artist Paul Moston (http://paulmoston.tumblr.com/). The photo was taken during a trip he took to India. He explained to me that the original image was a dense forest in a poor village in northern India. When I contacted him about working together we started to discuss the idea of "parts unknown" and he said he had some cool ideas. I went to his apartment and he showed me some shots he had been working on, and the cover we are using now stood out to me. After some minor adjustments he presented me with the album cover we have now!
8.Your songs have a really good balance between faster parts and the slower ones. What are your musical influences and how do you meld all this together?
John: Well, we are all big fans of the music in philadelphia right now, but we (especially me and Sean) have an intense love for Modest Mouse. On top of all of that, Sean has an extremely eclectic music collection, ranging from post-rock to noise, so that definitely influences our songwriting.
Sean: Modest Mouse forever. I've only recently started writing songs that aren't just Isaac Brock ripoffs, and that's how I feel. I don't think it always comes through in our music but we really listen to a lot of different stuff and are just trying to bring the best of what we love from other bands and bring together something cool and new. Hopefully it worked out.
9.What jobs do you have to make a living in your town? And how the things you do on your jobs influence the band’s music?
John: I work a full time job at a country club on the main line and go to school full time, as well. But, my schedule works out to where I have a lot of time to write, practice, and play, since I do most of my work in the morning. The other guys go to school, too. So, if anything, I would say it has forced us to work on our craft before we go out and play live. We aim to be extremely tight live and try to recapture the sound of our recordings to the best of our ability.
Sean: I am a full time student at Penn State's main campus in State College. I wrote all of the songs for the EP up at school last year, and I feel like extended periods of being away from home are always the biggest influences on my writing. I used to say all our music was about being in one place and wishing you were in another.
10.From a very distant place, it seems that emo revival is going pretty cool. The World Is A Beatiful Place released a great record, so Crash Of Rhinos. I recently interviewed an emo band based in California, American Memories, and they told me that if you have an emo band, the place to be is Philadelphia or UK. How do you see the whole emo revival thing and what bands do you think going to make it big? (Not in a monetary way, you know what I mean).
John: I love the music scene in Philadelphia, and I agree that Philly or the UK is a great place for emo. I would say a band living in Philadelphia has more opportunities on any given night to play to a crowd of like-minded individuals. The World Is.. definitely has broken through to some extent, as with a good number of the Topshelf roster. In Philly, Modern Baseball has been on a tear lately, just finishing up a US tour, so I think big things are coming their way. Also, Glocca Morra is another band I could see having a big future here in Philadelphia, not that they aren't already favorites.
Sean: Modern Baseball sort of already did it, I guess, and Glocca Morra is the best band in Philadelphia, period. Girl Scouts, Marietta, and Bleeding Fractals all slay and should have more recognition than I feel like they get.
11.So I have a little history to tell you. I was searching for new bands at Bandcamp and found you, I was no longer talking to my best friend and I was very sad because of that, and she called me exactly while I was your band, it was really a perfect soundtrack for reconciliation. What bands and specifically what music of this bands you would like to hear when reconciliation with somebody?
John: That's extremely flattering, thanks so much! For me, I like something somber like some World Is... songs, or something like "Treehouses" by Mimas. Mimas is band that I equate with my Sunday mornings; something I can ease into and lose track of time for a little bit, and I think that reaction is something similar to a feeling of reconciliation for me. When you reconcile with someone, it's almost like a weight has been lifted and you can ease your way back into a friendship or relationship. It's something like relief after a moment of anxiety.Sean: Joanna Newsom and The Antlers. Maybe Sufjan Stevens.
12.Thanks you so much! It’s the last question; make jokes, save the world, you can say anything but don’t say anything bad about Mineral. Really aprecciate and hope to hear big news from you soon.
John: Thanks again for taking the time to talk with us! If you're ever in Philly or we somehow find ourselves in Brazil, link up with us and we can catch a beer!Sean: thanks for interviewing us! get sad, stay sad.