Monday, November 24, 2014

Interview with Samantha Pathe of Sandy

Two days ago, I posted a "Release of the Day" for Sandy's debut EP on Night People. It's an excellent document of synthpop meeting shoegaze vocals, meaning it's sultry, but sometimes melancholic in mood and familiar in song structure. Dynamics of volume and instrumentation shift throughout the record, making it an interesting listen in addition to being simply pleasant.

Sandy is a group of three out of NYC with not a ton of information available so I figured I'd interview them, thereby staking my claim to being the first (and let's face it, I'm all about that). For more information on the record, hit the first hyperlink in this post, otherwise, let's just get into the dirty secrets of Sandy!

Jordan Reyes: Who all is in Sandy?

Samantha Pathe: Sandy is myself, my brother Stephen, and our friend Jeff.

JR: When did you start making music as Sandy?

SP: We started making music together just about 2 years ago.

JR: Have you guys been in other bands before? If so, have they been at all similar to the music in Sandy?

SP: We've all been in other bands before... we kind of ran in the same musical circles before starting a band together. I'd say the music we're making now is quite different from those other bands.  The use of synthesizers is definitely in the forefront.

JR: Do you guys listen to much electronic music? Are there any artists who particularly influence you?

SP: I'd say our musical interests are pretty eclectic.  We all do love electronic music but it's not any more dominant than other types of genres.  Initially when we first started getting to know each other we were listening to a lot of King Tubby, Portishead and Brian Eno.

JR: I've seen that you guys have played a bunch of shows: what do you think makes a good live show for you? Do you have a visual element to performance?

SP: We don't have a visual element for live shows.  It's really important to us that we all play our instruments in real-time; we don't rely on sampling or sequencers, except for a drum pad.  Other than that, to be honest, we don't really have a ton of experience playing live so it's a constant learning process.

JR: How does living in New York affect your music?

SP: It's definitely a tough place to live, especially when you're trying to do something creative. But it is also incredibly inspiring - the opportunities and constant energy.  It can be exhausting, and it's expensive.

JR: What bands have you guys played with or felt kinship with?

SP: House of Blondes are a great band who we've played a bunch of shows with.

JR: How long had you guys had the songs for the EP? How did you write them?

SP: All these songs were written around the same time, within the first year of playing together. Each song was a completely different process - sometimes they came from existing ideas or from us playing together. 

JR: The EP is really well-recorded and produced. It sounds really professional actually. Where and how did you record it?

SP: Thanks! Going back to your last question a little bit... the recording process and writing process can be kind of simultaneous. We recorded everything ourselves, at home and in our practice space. We also mixed most of the EP ourselves. We brought it to a studio in Brooklyn for some final touches and mastering. 

JR: How did you get in touch with Night People and have it released there?

SP: I just e-mailed Shawn. I was familiar with Night-People and some of the music Shawn had released. I remember listening to some of his back catalog thinking we might be a good fit, but I had no idea that he would actually want to release our music. We're really happy and feel very lucky to be associated with Shawn and Night-People.

JR: Are you guys working on a full-length or more music at the moment?

SP: We're always working on new stuff. Not specific to any length.  Because this band is such a complete collaboration, it takes us awhile to write and finish songs.

JR: Do you plan on touring the EP at all?

SP: We have no plans for a tour at the moment.

JR: What is your favorite childhood fairy tale?

SP: Steve - Rapunzel, Jeff - Stone Soup, Samantha - Alice in Wonderland

JR: I always felt kind of sad for the big bad wolf. He was probably just hungry and let's face it, Little Red Riding Hood was probably up to no good. For my money, I root for the wolf, though he never seems to escape alive without a belly full of stones. What do you guys think about this hypothesis?

SP: Yea, she was probably a pretty sketchy broad. But also, the wolf was pretty sneaky too. They both had it coming to them.

JR: If given the chance to go to outer space would you?

SP: Jeff would.

JR: What all is in the future for the band?

SP: We don't really know. We're taking things day by day. Trying to write stuff that we fancy.

JR: Anything else you'd like to say?

SP: Thanks for taking the time to seek out and listen to new artists.

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