On the heels of the release of their sophomore album, “Pythons,” West Palm Beach natives of the band Surfer Blood are bringing their melodic, indie pop-rock sounds back home in November as one of 10 bands performing at the Coastline Festival.
The music, beer, art and food festival will first make a stop at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheater on Nov. 9.
The Oracle interviewed lead singer, John Paul “JP” Pitts and touched on the new festival and the growth of the band as it recently signed to Warner Bros. Records.
Oracle: Are you excited to come back home for the music festival?
JP Pitts: I am excited about playing Coastline at home. The amphitheater we’re performing in, I went to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers and James Taylor there when I was growing up. So it is a real treat for me to play on that stage. I was joking that we should get like a guest list of 40 people for our friends and family. My mom and dad will be there, so it should definitely be a good time.
O: What makes this festival so unique?
JP: I just think there needs to be a way that people can see sort of different bands, like left of center bands. There is not really a thing for that in Florida. A lot of these bands don’t really go to Florida for a reason, so I think people should be excited about it. I like that there’s going to be a beer festival as well. I’m kind of like an old man these days, where I really enjoy good food and good beer. So it’s kind of nice to have a setting like that.
O: What bands are you excited to see while you’re there?
JP: I really love Passion Pit and I have seen Matt & Kim perform, before they were big, in a small warehouse, so I am excited to see them on a bigger stage. I think both of those shows will be pretty cool. I’m sure all of them will be a really good time.
O: Are you working on any new material?
JP: Yeah, we always keep writing. We plan on going over all of the ideas we have collected recently and sit down and go through them over our break.
O: Can you describe your sound for those who may not have heard your music?
JP: It’s really a melodic music that is very vocal and guitar centric. It’s very textural and quirky. We try to always get the best sounds, try to get the most interesting sounds. There is sort of an edginess to it, but for the most part, it really is supposed to be very pretty music.
O: How would you describe the sound change between albums?
JP: The song writing is more thought out on “Pythons” compared to “Astro Coast.” I think that’s because we were writing songs before we went into the studio. During “Astro Coast,” we would come up with an idea and then record that and then sort of piece it together and mull over it later. So it was happening at different times.
With “Pythons,” we wrote a whole bunch of songs before we went into the studio, and as a result, we already played the songs beforehand as a band. So we knew if the songs were too slow or too fast, or if we were
not hitting the notes. So we could get the song down to a T. We had a better idea of what we wanted and so I
think that makes it more cohesive, maybe. All of the songs, while very different, sound like they should actually be on the same record together.
O: Has anything changed since moving to a bigger label?
JP: Well it definitely is different. At first it wasn’t. With “Astro Coast,” you know, no one knew who we were, so we were working, taking our time, and it was when we started touring that people started to notice us and started listening. I think it’s different when you have a label. There are a lot of expectations of you, and they constantly want to hear songs and what you are working on. When you have all of these people around and they all have something to say about this song or that, it’s different than just writing whatever song comes out.
We tried really hard to not let anything get in our heads while writing this record. It’s definitely different being on Warner Brothers. They also have like a million employees versus Kanine that has two. They are pushing the record and they are trying to get it on the radio where people can hear it. They give us the means to record in a real nice studio where we can be picky and take our time. We’re also able to use whatever equipment is lying around and we can get all of the sounds we wanted to get and make a really big sounding record.