Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Weather (SCQ's Year-End Questionnaire Part II)

2010 was a great year for A Weather fans, as the Portland-based indie-folk outfit released the wonderful Everyday Balloons. Speaking of future plans and a place in Maine I definitely have to visit, Aaron Gerber and Aaron Krenkel live up to their band’s quiet reflections as they ponder the year gone by. (Photo by Mary Gerber)

SCQ: Every list-lover's favourite question: what are your top albums of 2010? Feel free to include any older yet worthy records you discovered this year.

AK: Hmmm... in terms of new music... I really like the National's record, High Violet. I haven't listened to a ton of new things. The Vetiver record, Tight Knit, really grew on me, but I don't even know what year that's from. A friend's band, Roofwalkers, from DC self-released a really great record. Otherwise I've gotten really into a lot of older African music, reissues of Nigerian jazz/rock fusion things and stuff like that, which is kind of funny because it's not really much related to music we play. I read Pitchfork and a few other sites a lot and like a lot of the music they review, but have a hard time deciding what to really pay attention to.

SCQ: What were you listening to a lot of while recording your excellent album Everyday Balloons?

AG: I didn’t listen to anything specific while the actually recording was happening, as I usually find it best to insolate myself from other music while working on my own. I do remember listening to some stuff in the months before going into the studio including some old stand bys: Leonard Cohen, The Vaselines, Nick Drake, and some newer Portland bands: Point Juncture WA, Laura Gibson, Chores.

SCQ: Be cocky for once in your life: what was the finest thing you did all year? That moment where you actually thought "shit, I nailed that..."?

AG: Aaron (Krenkel) urged me to mention a roasted pork loin with a rosemary and garlic crust that I prepared last winter. I’ve become proficient at cooking large chunks of meat this year.

SCQ: Effect and Cause: I picked out an engagement ring in early August and found your album waiting in the mail for me when I returned home. That night, I spun songs like 'No Big Hope' and 'Lay Me Down' on repeat as if I was thirteen years old playing mix-tapes of radio favourites. Okay, your turn: confess a true tale that inspired one of the songs from Everyday Balloons.

AG: The song “Giant Stairs” sprung from revisiting a place in Maine called (surprisingly enough) Giant Stairs. It’s a formation of huge slabs of rock that form steps down to the ocean. It’s a place I often go when I return to Maine and the song is, in part, about this idea of returning. None of my music is overly biographical or narrative so this is the best I can do to answer your question.

SCQ: If all the reasonable and implausible ideas in your head came to fruition in 2011, what would they be?

AG: Hmm. I’d like to record another record at some point, as I have amassed a fair amount of new songs. There are some non-band related plans that I am interested to see develop. We have been on a hiatus for the past few months so I look forward to reconvening as a band again and hearing new things happen between us. (Could I be more vague?)

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