An over- all artistic band, Lucille Furs are the perfect concoction of lyrical whit and pulsating rhythms. Jen from MWN had the pleasure uncover the creative minds behind Lucille Furs.
MWN: It’s Jen from Music Why Not! I’m with two lovely members of Lucille Furs
LUCILLE FURS: Hi, This is Trevor and Brendan
MWN: Alright, so is Lucille Furs a person? Trevor you joked earlier that it’s you.
Trevor: Haha! You weren’t suppose to say that in front of Brendan
MWN: Oh ! Forgot!
Trevor: Lucille Furs is actually an amalgamation of people and I’ve yet to decide if I want to name any of the people that were my contribution to the amalgamation of people, ya know? We’ll see. I guess it depends once the album comes out if they like the record. Otherwise I don’t think they want to be associated.
Brendan: It’s not Arrested Development though. It’s funny that people mention that. It’s not suppose to be “Lucille Bluth” replaced with “Furs”
MWN: Not to pry, but is it mainly girls, boys, or friends who contributed to said amalgamation?
Brendan: It’s a mix of all of the above.
MWN: I think a notable song off of your Spotify is “Baby Blaise.” What’s the story behind that one? Is the spelling a play on words?
Trevor: That’s funny, that’s another amalgamation of people.
Brendan: Haha, yeah we don’t do any drugs or anything..
Trevor: No yeah, it’s not like “Blaaaaze.” Haha. It’s a friend of mine. The song is not really exclusively about her. She is a friend of mine that has a stage name, but the song is more about a different friend of mine who I didn’t want to specifically name in the song. The name “Baby Blaise” is an alliteration to it. It’s mostly about the concept of inventing a personality for yourself and selling yourself as an image and dealing with the internet and how marketing has gone from being a purely business thing into strangely a personal thing. People have begun to personally market themselves.
MWN: Now in terms of marketing, the Chicago scene is pretty DIY from what I’ve seen and your band pays homage to the likes of the classic rock aesthetic. Why is that?
LF: Brendan: The cool thing about this band is that we didn’t really think about it. It freakishly occurred that we all enjoy older music, I guess homage is a good word, but it’s not necessarily something we stress over of sounding old. We all like new things, ya know what I mean?
Trevor: Personally, the rejection of a recording medium is just a recording medium. Tape sounds a certain way and the reason we like to record on tape is because it sounds like that. It sounds warm and rich and it was invented at a certain time and so the music of that time has that particular sound. Like if you record “Muddy Waters” on Pro Tools it would’ve sound differently. So it isn’t so much about trying to sound like a time or an era, but really we just think it sounds better. I think, not that I’m really sanctimonious about the concept of like a song, but it’s always struck me that the narrative of Popular Music has to do with the sound of it, when really it is just defined by the technology that it was developed with. And I don’t really think it’s significant for an artist or whatever as the song itself being recorded. You can really record a great song really poorly and you can record a really shitty song really well.
MWN: Speaking of narratives, your songs create characters that are defined lyrically but are embellished by your vivid sound. Where did you write “In Samsara” and “Sunset Moon”?
Trevor: It was not “In Samsara,” which is not a place haha.
MWN: Haha! What I’m heading towards is the fact that your songs don’t carry on with any annoying or repetitive choruses there is in fact a story being told.
Trevor: Ya know it’s funny that you mentioned that, we were criticized for that one time. Well, we invited criticism. It was like a professor from Columbia or something that Brendan or Patrick knew. We asked him what he thought and he said that we didn’t have any of those big sing-alongy choruses. He said we should write “something you can put on a T- Shirt.” We don’t have like an outright rejection of marketing ideas or anything, but it’s funny you mention it now. That was sort out of the point. I guess people like different stuff, which is no surprise. Umm, what was the question? Haha!
Brendan: Well Sunset Moon isn’t on Spotify
Trevor: Yeah like with the DIY stuff you mentioned, because like when ya do it yourself you lose certain things, like “wait? Should I post that” but yeah we are getting ready to release our debut album. We re-recorded some of the songs from our 45 that we liked well enough and re-developed sort of a different sound since then.
MWN: With your SoFar Sounds session, Carrie & Judy is one of my personal favorites. Will that song be on the record?
Brendan: Which SoFar sound was that?
Trevor: I don’t remember actually?
MWN: Chicago? You do have that one session from London as well
Brendan: That might’ve been a different song.
Trevor: Haha, we all have the same information about our band !
MWN: Haha, well most of your shows have been 21 + which isn’t a possibility for some of us and I was lucky to catch your set at Shuga’s for RSDay.
Trevor: And that’s the thing, for anyone who reads this and wants to book us at a place, this is a direct plug for people under 21 who want us to play for them. It gets tricky, so sometimes you have to play DIY spaces just so everyone can attend.
MWN: Haha, well going back to the aesthetic of your band, I always like to understand how the artwork of an album represents the band as a whole. With the debut on its way, how did you manage to encapsulate one another collectively?
Brendan: At first we tried to do the artwork ourselves but like all great artists, we needed a producer. We ended up hiring my friend John Zabawa to do the artwork for us and find out his interpretation of what we sounded like. So we handed it off to him, and we haven’t shown a single soul what it looks like.
Trevor: His idea was to do a painting and have no words or description, just the painting. He used a canvas that was the exact same size as a record cover and photographed it so it appears the exact same size as it was painted. I love it. I couldn’t be more happy with it.
Brendan: When it comes to artwork, we were blessed with someone who understands us.
MWN: Well we’ve just been joined by Patrick and Dino, but there’s another member missing? Haha!
Brendan: Nick is within walking radius. Who knows if he’ll make the show
MWN: Hopefully! Now that more members are here, talk to me about the writing process
Trevor: Patrick, you take this one.
Brendan: Yeah, let’s pass the torch haha.
Patrick: Trevor and I would write lyrics either together or separate. But I actually work with music first then do a little melody over it. We write and do a lot of backyard sessions at my place and start off with acoustic. It’s easier if you get as much done with one person then bring it to the table and plug it in electrically. Trevor would write or I would write.
Trevor: Yeah, sometimes I write a whole song on my bike then I get home and figure out how to make it. Some of my favorite songs of mine, the process is never predictable. The songs I always get the most excited about are the one’s I had written the words and melody without ever picking up an instrument. Like it was all just kind of in my head. But it’s not always the same process ya know? Like I try to bring it to the band before I’ve gotten to precious about it. Haha, because I don’t want to bring it to the table and say “you have to play this part a certain way.” That would not fly.
Patrick: Personally, it’s sort of easier for me to write a melody first then come up with the syllables. But every song is so different.
Brendan: With instrumental sections, we develop that together. Dino will do something on the Mellotron.
Dino: It’s very Democratic with the arrangements and parts.
Patrick: And that’s how you know you found the right dudes to play with when you have something and you try to leave it as open as possible for everyone to write in their own parts.
MWN: With this open creativity within your band, how many tracks were produced on the debut? And when do you see it being released.
Trevor: It’s 12 songs and 2017 for sure.
Brendan: The record is done and is currently being pressed on an orange vinyl.
MWN: Why Orange?
Brendan: You’ll have to wait and see. It’s a big secret.
MWN: Ohh, it probably goes right back to the painting?
Trevor: Well we put so much work into the music of the thing, that when John came back with the artwork, we were fresh with excitement and now we’re sitting on it ya know?
Patrick: We have a projected date
Trevor: End of the summer, I don’t want to be held down to any specific dates yet, haha.
Brendan: We’ve actually gone back to TreeHouse and started recording for our next record
MWN: Oh wow. Is this for real or is this sarcasm?
Trevor: No, we actually went back and did four tracks.
MWN: So are you planning on not following the typical music release cycle with the whole two year wait?
Trevor: That’s exactly what we’re trying to avoid.
MWN: It’s definitely nice to keep fans with frequent releases. That’s also one of the beauties of the vinyl because you can’t hit skip, unless if you physically lift up the needle.
Trevor: I’m grateful for that.
Patrick: Everyone’s got short attention spans nowadays.
MWN: Haha, for my final, but most important question, How long have you been Lucille Furs?
Brendan: Patrick set up this pandemonium
Patrick: I’ve known Nick the longest, and we played. Trevor recorded at TreeHouse separately.
Trevor: I had a different project.
Patrick: I was doing some shitty solo stuff, and Nick was down and these guys were down. And we had known each other a little bit here and there.
Trevor: You asked one of the most difficult questions last. Haha, How did this happen? We’re all like “shit.”
Patrick: Say we met at church
Trevor: “We met at church.” I like that. Yeah, we met at church.
MWN: Epic, well I appreciate all of you for taking the time to sit down and speak with me. I wish you the best of luck!
LF: Nick: Thank you !
Interview By:Jennifer Machuca |Instagram @jen_machuca| Exclusively for @Music, Why Not! -All Rights Reserved-