The Recording Academy Texas Chapter recently played host for GRAMMYs On The Road at the Austin City Limits Music Festival, held Oct. 12–14 at Zilker Park in Austin, Texas. The Chapter conducted exclusive backstage interviews with artists performing at the festival, including British blues/rock trio Band Of Skulls and indie prog-pop band the Eastern Sea.
Band Of Skulls discussed the band's formation, their latest release, 2012's Sweet Sour, and advice for aspiring musicians, among other topics.
"Stay true to what you like to play and what you like to write, and just keep going at it," said drummer Matt Hayward. "[Music] is supposed to be an enjoyable thing."
With a sound that encompasses elements of blues and indie rock, Band Of Skulls were formed in the UK by college friends Hayward, Russell Marsden (guitar/vocals) and Emma Richardson (bass/vocals) while the trio was studying in Southampton. Originally titled Fleeing New York, Band Of Skulls released their debut album, Baby Darling Doll Face Honey, in 2009. Released in February, Sweet Sour features 10 songs co-written by Marsden and Richardson, including "You're Not Pretty But You Got It Goin' On," and peaked at No. 1 on Billboard's Top Heatseekers chart. Band Of Skulls are currently scheduled to open for Muse on select dates in the United States and Canada in January and February.
The Eastern Sea discussed performing at the ACL Music Festival as a hometown band, the term "prog-pop" and their most recent release, Plague.
"Prog-pop is something that I came up with when I wrote our bio," said singer/songwriter Matthew Hines. "[It] describes our band as being pop in a sense that it's catchy, melodic, fun, [and] accessible music, but the prog nature is challenging. It takes the listener to a place that maybe they haven't been to before."
Based in Austin, Texas, the Eastern Sea was formed in 2005 as the solo project of Hines, who released a self-produced anthology, Further Up, Further In, which showcased his roots in folk and electronica. In 2009 the Eastern Sea released two eponymous EPs, including songs such as "The Snow" and "The Sea." In a live setting, the Eastern Sea have performed with between five and 12 musicians. Released in June, Plague explores elements of post-rock, American folk and progressive indie rock.