I had the great opportunity to talk with an up and coming group that is making waves in the industry. That group is Data Romance, an Electro-Indie duo based out of Vancouver in Canada. The duo has released a self titled EP, as well as their first single, “Caves”, from their upcoming album. Data Romance is one of the best bands you aren’t listening to, so change that and start listening.
Josh: Who is Data Romance? (Give me a little background on you.)
Amy: Jay, and myself (Amy). We met in high school through a mutual friend,
and were each doing separate musical projects. Jay drummed in a local
band, and I used to play solo with my guitar at coffee shops and bars
around town. We ended up getting together for this project when Jay’s
band broke up, and I had just graded from University and was looking
for something new. He sent over some instrumentals he was working on,
the rest is history.
Josh: At what age did you first get into music?
Amy: God, I can remember dancing around to a VHS tape my mom had made that
had Cyndi Lauper video’s on it when I was maybe five? I used to play
those over and over and dance around singing to them in our living
room. I can honestly say that’s what started my love for music.
Watching her dancing around in one video, then crying in the next was
so inspiring to me. I’m pretty sure in my head i was thinking.. This
is a job? Where do i sign up? Actually though, I think I did my first
show when I was about 17.
Josh: Who is your biggest musical influence?
Amy: It literally varies day to day for me. Bat for Lashes (Natasha Khan),
Bjork, Thom Yorke. I don’t normally answer questions for Jay, but for
him it’s Trent Reznor. That much I know.
Josh: How huge has it been for you to finally be able to put together a full
Amy: Huge. I feel like it’s been in the making for so long, I can’t believe
it’s a month away from it’s release. We started it almost a year ago,
then with tracking, mixing, mastering, marketing, artwork, video’s,
the list is endless really, the months added up. Needless to say it’s
time for it to come out. And we couldn’t be happier with what we’ve
come up with.
Josh: Your single “Caves” is out now, I personally love the track, what do
you want to tell fans about that track?
Amy: Thanks! That track is sort of the centre of the album concept. It
wasn’t written first, but it was an idea that just sort of clicked in
my head when I was looking for a meaning to attach all the other songs
to. I was watching an episode of Planet Earth, ‘Caves’, and realized I
was emotionally connecting to them. They became the metaphor for all
the song meanings, and life events I had put into the songs.
Josh: What is your favorite part about recording?
Amy: My favorite part about recording is heading to the studio, preferably
in the late evenings after stopping for a very strong coffee, and
locking myself in the vocal booth for the night. I have this weird no
breaks policy when I’m recording because I feel like when I stop
whatever vibe is going on in the studio, I won’t be able to get it
back. Also Jay and I have such a short form of language when it comes
to recording. I can know by a hand gesture or head tilt if he was
happy, and vice versa.
Josh: Is there a certain track on the upcoming album that you are
particularly happy with and excited to get out to fans?
Amy: I feel like each track gives fans something different, and my
favorites vary from day to day. Right now we’re waiting to release
“Can’t Keep Your Mind Off“, which seems to be all of our friend’s
favorites, so I’m excited to see what the response will be like. Jay’s
favorite is “Cargo“, which I’ll say is the simplest and most broken
down track on the album. Our Bjork tribute, if you will, which we had
a live harpist come into the studio to record on. That was definitely
one of the best days in the studio.
Josh: What band would you most like to tour with?
Amy: Radiohead. Next question.
Josh: Obviously you are still fairly new to the industry. What would you say
is the most eye-opening thing you have learned? And what would you say
is the best advice you have gotten.
Amy: Not to quote The X Files, but, trust no one, and with your gut. We
hate giving advice because as you said we’re so new to the industry.
But I think what matters most is having the music and the band be the
center or everything you do. If your band connection is strong, and
the music is honest to what you want to be making, and not catering to
the industry, then in the very least, you’ll feel proud of what you’re
doing. The best advice I’ve gotten lately from someone in the industry
is to tour, and keep touring, because that’s where the business is at
these days. No one is buying albums these days. Except of course, on
February 19th, 2013.
Josh: What is your best memory since starting your music career?
Amy: There’s too many, but they all seem to involve touring for me. There
was a fan who bought 7 of our albums at a show because he said he
wanted to sell them on Ebay one day. I’ll probably always remember
that, and I really hope we don’t let him down. Or playing a game
called Radish Ball on the Digitalism tour bus when we were touring
through the states. But that would take a while to explain. Yes they
were real radishes, and no, we had no idea where the came from.
Josh: In 2011 you got to take part in the Identity Festival, how big was
that for you?
Amy: It was pretty crazy seeing as it was our first tour, and we got to
share a tour bus with Modeselektor. I can’t say a dance festival was
the best fit for us, and we usually played at 1pm to people who were
just walking into the venues, but it was everything in between that
was so priceless to me. Like having breakfast or dinner with the
endless lists of inspiring artists on the bill. Or when Modeselektor
would do DJ sets on our tour bus when we were driving through the
middle of nowhere all night, getting to hear unreleased songs that
featured some of our favorite artists. Or having a Heineken, which we
couldn’t figure out was alcoholic or non-alcoholic, on the side of the
stage sitting on an amp watching a Crystal Method set in the pouring
rain. Those are things I’ll never forget.
Josh: And how do you feel the fans on that festival received you?
Amy: As I said before, we had a few fans come out, but a dance festival
band isn’t what we set out to be. Especially one that mostly featured
Dub-step artists. It just doesn’t feel right to see our name next to
Steve Aoki and Skrillex, and I think our fans understand that. I can
remember one kid trying desperately to dance to one of our slow songs,
dressed in his raver gear. I appreciated the effort.
Josh: You guys are pretty active on social media, how important do you feel
that is? Do you feel like it gets your fans more excited about what
you guys are doing?
Amy: Definitely. We’re always on there. If you message or comment on
something, one of us will respond within that day. And not because we
think we should, it’s because we genuinely want to. It’s what gets
people excited, and what gets us excited frankly. The whole point of
music is connecting, so I don’t understand why a band would be distant
from their fans. I think it’s THE most important thing, aside from the
music. Again that’s why getting to play live is so valuable, because
we get to put faces to names. If you say “Hey I’m that guy who tweeted
you the other day”, chances are we’ll know exactly what you’re talking
Josh: Outside of music what are your hobbies?
Amy: I keep getting asked this question, and I need an answer other than..
uh, music? I love movies. Biking. Running. This is starting to feel
like a dating site application…
Josh: What is playing right now on your iPod or computer?
Amy: Honestly, right now it’s our album. I had taken a break from listening
to it so it would feel fresh when it came out, but I keep trying to
picture what it would be like to listen to for the first time. Which I
know makes no sense, and is impossible to know because I’ve probably
heard the songs hundreds of times. But I still love them, so that’s a
Josh: If you could tell your fans anything, what would it be?
Amy: Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Thank you to Amy for taking the time to do this interview. To all the fans, get excited about this album! You can pick up the previous releases here.