Thursday, June 14, 2012

Artist Interview With Danger of Countless Thousands

Hello, everyone. MissTaintedLove back with another artist interview. 

Today I bring to you my interview with the highly enthusiastic and intelligent Danger from the very talented band Countless Thousands, an indie/punk group from Garden Grove, California. 

Sit tight and hang on, you won't wanna miss this.

Photo is from the guy's Facebook page.

MTL: Who are the band members, and what do they each play?
Hi! I’m Danger. I play guitar and sing. Davey Munch plays bass, and Jon David plays drums. 

MTL: How did the band come together? 
Danger: Craigslist! I’ve been playing as Countless Thousands for almost ten years. Seven bassists later I met Davey. Fourteen drummer later I met Jon. All through the miracle of Craigslist. It’s also how I bought all the fancy guitar gear I shouldn’t be able to afford. Bless you, Craig!

MTL: Have you guys ever worked with any other notable musicians, or on any other projects/collaborations?
Danger: Davey was in a jazz fusion group in Philadelphia called the Half of It, and Jonny played with Noise Pollution over in China. They played to thousands of people over there, you can ask him all about it at our show. He loves talking about that.

MTL: The name "Countless Thousands" - how did that come about?
Danger: I’ve always been interested in the things that are given power because we ignore them. We had been Everyman for a while, but there was a band on the east coast called Everyman and we had to scramble for a new name. Thinking about crowds and identity and power got me thinking about the Statue of Liberty, and suddenly, “Oh, I know! What about ‘the Huddled Masses!’” But then I realized that sounded kinda wimpy and the next thing I knew the phrase ‘Countless Thousands’ paraded through my brain.

MTL: If you could describe the band and your music in five words, what would they be? 
Danger: “Enthusiastic Rock Music, baby cakes.”

MTL: What do you feel sets you guys apart from the crowd?
Danger: Our enthusiasm, which science is still trying to measure. Look, in terms of technicality we’re well past professional grade - our bassist is among the best bassists in pop music. Our drummer obsesses over bpms and subdivisions and specifics of music theory that I don’t pretend to understand. I’m… pretty good at guitar. As good as we all are at the music that we play, and as good as our music actually is, our enthusiasm will always be our most defining characteristic.  

MTL: What is the inspiration for your music?
Danger: Life, man. Easiest and hokiest answer, but the best.

MTL: What type of music/artists have influenced you and your music? 
Danger: The Weakerthans, genius indie rock born of the gentling of punk rock. No one writes better lyrics than this band. Goldfinger started everything for me, they were the first band that made me feel like I had found something made specifically for me. 'Hang Ups' is still a goddamn classic, and I met Charlie, their guitarist, at the Riverboat Gamblers show and he is a sweetheart. So hopefully if i ever am in the position of having a sweaty, nervous and clearly nerding out young fella talk in grandiose terms of my awesomeness, I’ll follow the Charlie model and be super cool. 

MTL: How were you first introduced to music in your life? 
Danger: Dancing to the Village People at weddings when I was five or six. 

MTL: At what point in your life was the defining moment that made you realize what you wanted to do, as a musician?
Danger: I got fired from a job that I really didn’t like all that much after going to college to get a degree to get that job. I had been playing music seriously throughout school, but when that door closed on me I took a gut check and realized that I wasn’t really cut out for office politics. I’ve always had trouble not telling people how I feel about something, and as a rockstar that’s praised as a highly valuable asset. So off to menial labor, and hello part-time rockstardom! 

MTL: What do you feel is the best piece of music you've created? Why do you choose this one?
Danger: We have a song called ‘Thanks for the Cockfosters’ that I wrote about Davey, our bassist. It’s a love song and I love it, not least because of this lyric: “You’re stuck on me like I’m an island oasis/ but I’ve got sour news, my heart is in homeostasis.” I know I can be my own biggest fan sometimes – important for maintaining one’s enthusiasm – but even I think that lyric is the closest I’ve ever come to perfection. Also, it might be the first use of the word ‘homeostasis’ in music.

MTL: What plans do you have in the near future for music release/recording? What sets this upcoming project apart from your previous ones?
Danger: We recently released our debut 16-track album “We’re Just Really Excited To Be Here” and we are very proud of it. It hasn’t gotten a single bad review from any of the bloggers and mags that have been kind enough to give us a shot. 

MTL: Any upcoming tour plans?
Danger: We’re putting something together for Utah and Wyoming. Stay tuned, kids!

MTL: Any words of advice for young/aspiring musicians? 
Danger: Get a helmet. It’s going to suck for a long time – for the first three years of playing your instrument, you’re going to suck. Then when you finally get good enough, you’re going to meet other musicians that are going to suck and people who will want to take advantage of you or folks who’ll just disappear on you when you need them. You absolutely must develop an internal strength against failure, because you will fail again and again and you have to be prepared for it. If things were easy, then you’d only be in it for as long as it is easy. Sounds gloomy as hell, but all great men and women throughout history were told to go home at some point. Some of us just hear it more often than others.

MTL: Being involved with the music business myself, I have to say that piece of advice happens to be extremely true. Things suck for a long time. Really. Suck. For. A. Long. Time. But anyway… 

MTL: What are your thoughts of the current state of the music industry? How do you feel you and the band fit into it?
Danger: There’s a nice cozy spot between the Foo Fighters and Against Me! that we’d love to occupy in the KROQ playlists. But really, the music scene is a swamp right now. The internet means anybody can do anything they want with anybody’s music –including their own – and finding a way to separate yourself from the pack is the biggest challenge there is. Our live show is what will preserve us from history’s ebb, though. See us live and you will not forget us. So many people are getting so overburdened with tired, pretentious music or exhausted themes and tropes that when a band as genuine as us comes along we’re a huge breath of fresh air. Here’s an experiment – listen to any pop radio station for ten minutes and take a shot of any grain alcohol every time you hear the phrases “throw it all away” or “be your baby” or “can’t go on” or “party don’t stop” . Then when you’re hung over the next day and trying not to puke, ruminate on the word “homeostasis”. 

MTL: Excellent advice. Note: I do not advise the grain alcohol experiment while driving and listening to the radio, could end bad! 

MTL: Where do you see the band five years from now?
Danger: God willing, we’ll be doing what we’re already doing,  just to more people and full-time. Also I will be the President of the Moon, but that’s on my ten-year plan.

Alright guys, if you want to check out more of Countless Thousands (which I recommend), then visit the following links! And thanks again to Danger, best of luck to the band!

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