Sunday, April 14, 2013

Solarsuit, Luna Lune, Hurris & Gig

Posted By on April 14, 2013, 11:59 PM

click to enlarge blog9353widea.jpg

This past weekend was badass, filled with local shows that were dealing with large crowds. Clearly, once the rain hit, even with the cold weather, we wanted to get the fuck out of the house! --- This month I made my way over to The Shred Shed where the all-ages venue (and 2013 Best Of Utah winner) was hosting an album release show for Hurris & Gig to a sold out crowd! Packed room going crazy for everything the duo did, not to mention the absolute love and support for the two openers of Solarsuit and Luna Lune.

click to enlarge 47108_med.jpg

Today we chat with all three bands, and you get to look at photos from that evening's showcase, which if you weren't at, you probably should have been. You can check out the nearly 300 pictures in this gallery.



Solarsuit (Logan Nelson, Luke Barton, Ethan England, Billy Brown & Matt Spurrier)

click to enlarge 47397_med.jpg

Solarsuit on Facebook



Gavin: Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.



Logan: My name is Logan Nelson. I am the songwriter and lead singer of Solarsuit, and I love film.



Matt: I'm Matt Spurrier. I am the keyboardist for Solarsuit, and I like basketball.



Luke: My name is Luke Barton. I am the lead guitarist for Solarsuit, and I enjoy photography.



Billy: I am Billy Brown. I am the Drummer for Solarsuit, and I love Circus Arts.

click to enlarge 47386_med.jpg

Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?



Logan: Ever since I was born I loved music. I was raised on Human League, Howard Jones, the Fixx, Depeche Mode, my mom loved 80’s pop. I loved to go up to people and sing “Don’t You Want Me” by Human League, and others in kindergarten for attention (fans). I’ve been performing my whole life.



Luke: I would say the same. My family has been heavily influenced by music for a long time. Its always been close to me.



Logan: Do you guys want to say anything?



Matt: You pretty much said it all.



Ethan: Agreed.



Logan: We have all loved music since a young age.



Gavin: How did you all come together as a group to first form Q&A?



Logan: I had been in bands previously before Q&A. My first band Video broke up in the summer of ninth grade. When Video broke up, my drummer stayed with me to try to reform the band. I knew Luke played bass for his sister Tessa from Luna Lune, but heard he was a killer guitarist. He was always in the back of my mind to start band with. So I called him up, asked if he was interested, and we jammed the next day. As we were thinking about bassist none really came to mind. So we thought about young guitarist from the Holladay area that could do the trick. Suddenly Ethan came up. He agreed and was excited about it, and now he is a full-blown bassist. Matt came in as an extra percussionist for our first song “Life,” because we needed an extra hand with the drumbeat. Later on our drummer left, and that’s when we found Billy, and by then Matt moved his way up to keyboards for our second EP.

click to enlarge 47360_med.jpg

Gavin: What made you go for more of an alt-indie style and how has it been performing in front of crowds.



Ethan: I think Logan has always written in that sort of alt-indie genre, and now that we are going into a more indie-synthpop direction we are excited to show our hard work to our fans.



Logan: And as for the crowd? We had a show for our last EP release were we had 300-400 people in a concrete basement going so crazy that we broke a table, tipped the left PA speaker over, and sang every lyric from our past EP. So yeah, I think they’ve responded well to Q&A’s alt-indie sound. Haha.



Gavin: Prior to the name change you released two EPs in 2012. What was it like putting those together and what did you think of the public reaction to them?



Matt: The past EP’s were interesting because they were good, but almost acted as stepping-stones to where we are now. When we first put out the self-titled EP, we were 16 and people were extremely impressed as well as interested in our music. When our second EP Mvufu was released we had a HUGE response to our song “Sleep Talking.”



Logan: We can play that song as well as others like “Life,” or “Up and Up” with everybody in the crowd singing the lyrics. That was a huge accomplishment for me. Nothing makes me smile bigger the emotional connection I get with fans at a show.



Ethan: It’s very rare that you’ll find a band that immediately, without some sort of experience writing together, especially with how young we are, clicks. We had a year to establish relationships with the Utah music scene, and work our way to our current indie-synthpop sound. We did that, and more.



Billy: I think we are ready to show Utah what we are made of.



Luke: Couldn’t have said it better Bill.

click to enlarge 47336_med.jpg

Gavin: What made you change the band name and where did Solarsuit come from?



Luke: Just simply because of our sound.



Matt: Q&A is impossible to find online as well, so we saw the opportunity to change and we took it.



Logan: As for where it came from? Nowhere. We thought the name sounded cool, nobody had it, it fits our sound perfectly, and I made a really good-looking logo for it. Haha.



Gavin: Now that you're technically a new band, are there plans for a new release or possibly touring?



Logan: What a great question! Haha. We are excited to announce that we are in the process of recording at Metcom Studios, and will be releasing a three-track EP in May of 2013. Followed by an album sometime in summer/fall. When it comes to touring, we hope to book a west coast tour this summer, but without tracks its hard to book so hopefully we will have dates for the west-coast tour very soon.

click to enlarge 47346_med.jpg

Gavin: Moving onto state-wide stuff, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?



Ethan: Provo is absolutely killing it right now. They have had bands getting signed out of there left and right. I think right now for the Indie genre. Utah may be the best place to be for possible fame. The only bad side is that Salt Lake needs to step it up. Haha. Only kidding, Its not a competition, but hey! We love Kilby, and The Shred Shed.



Logan: We will play there whenever they need us. Solarsuit has a special place for Kilby Court in our hearts. We played our first “home-run show” there, and that’s when we realized there was something special with our music. I have that venue to thank for that.



Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?



Matt: I think we are on our way. We’ve proved ourselves with The Used, Neon Trees, Imagine Dragons, Royal Bliss, and Fictionist when their album hits the charts. The Moth & The Flame, Golden Sun, and The New Electric Sound are the next ones to be picked up.



Logan: We are good friends with Andrew Goldring, so we really hope the best for Golden Sun. They’re fantastic, and their hard work is starting to pay off for them.

click to enlarge 47377_med.jpg

Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?



Ethan: Like Logan just said, Golden Sun, we love those guys.



Logan: I really like Polytype as well. They have a very interesting sound.



Matt: I mean Luna Lune, we love those guys (and girl). Haha.



Logan: I have been a huge fan of Fictionists since Invisible Hand. Robbie is also my boss (I teach guitar with him) so I really hope they go into the scene with much success.



Luke: The Blue Aces.



Logan: We like them because they just a bunch of kids doing what they love, just like us.



Billy: The scene has a lot of Local Acts we have played with that we really enjoyed. There is just talent all over in Utah. We just need to show it.



Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how its affects local musicians?



Ethan: 101.9 The End, KRCL, KBER, and X96 are very supportive of the local scene.



Logan: I’ve been listening to Chunga on 101.9 since he was with Mister. I would love to go play on these stations, and plan on it in future dates.



Matt: Its all part of the plan to get where we need to be.

click to enlarge 47394_med.jpg

Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?



Billy: Ethan what do you think about file sharing?



Logan: Billy is saying that because Ethan hasn’t bought a song in quite a bit of time.

Ethan: I think it totally depends on the circumstance of the band. If they are in need of money to finance their recording expenses, touring, family, etc, then yeah ill pay for a CD. But if its like Nikki Minaj who clearly doesn’t need money. I don’t feel bad about it.



Logan: I agree, except for downloading Nikki Minaj, I don’t listen to that stuff.



Ethan: Neither do I, it was just an analogy.



Matt: Oh yeah, definitely Ethan.



Gavin: What can we expect from all of you over the rest of this year?



Logan: We have had some really crazy doors open for us in the industry. We have two “in's” with head A&R guys at Warner, and Universal, and we have been talking with Motley Crues bassist Nikki Sixx for a bit of time now. If this EP/album turns out to be as big as we plan on it to be. We could be in the same boat as Imagine Dragons, Neon Trees and Fictionist. So expect some very amazing things from Solarsuit. We have worked really hard to get this music to its full potential. Get ready for a unique sound Utah is unfamiliar with, but will LOVE.

click to enlarge 47324_med.jpg

Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?



Logan: Go like our Facebook page. also join our email list by sending your name, and email address to solarsuitband@gmail.com, follow us on Twitter and Instagram.





Luna Lune (Luke, Chas, Tessa & Tony)

click to enlarge 47396_med.jpg

IAmLunaLune.com



Gavin: Hey everyone, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.



Chas: I'm 24, BYU studying Advertising as an Art Director, graduating in December. Guitarist.



Tessa: I'm a 22 U of U graduating in Photography with a Fine Arts Degree this April. A creator in all things. From styrofoam cups at dinner table, photography business and passion, and Musical career, she makes things beautifully and with her own stamp of uniqueness. She is a brand. Singer, guitar, piano.



Tony: I'm a 21 U of U communications graduating in august. Drummer. Fits in with the Barton family very well. We practice in the Barton's living room where we keep our entire setup and Tony gets a lot of time with the family as the family is always around and heavily involved/invested in the band. Fantastic guy. Gets a long really well with Chas, Luke, and even Cole (our youngest brother and merch man)



Luke: I'm 16, a junior at Olympus High School, but don't let his age fool you. He has a love affair with music and his guitar saying up late into the night sitting Indian-style on the floor experimenting the fretboard in ways we didn't even know exists. He primarily plays bass in Luna Lune but plays lead guitar in Solar Suit. Very naturally gifted musician (perhaps more than anyone else in the family). Music is his biggest passion in life and he sees a lifelong career out of it.

click to enlarge 47318_med.jpg

Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?



Chas: I was the first child in the family and started taking violin lessons at a very young age. I hated every minute of it. Then I switched to piano and it was okay. Then I added in trumpet through school and private lessons. Then, as a 15 year old, I received a mysteriously shaped package with my name on it. My grandpa had ordered me a cheap guitar from an infomercial and this changed the destiny of the entire Barton family. I immediately fell in love with the guitar and from that first guitar, now we have over 12 guitars in the house, keyboard, drum sets, amps, cello (my latest venture), trumpet, bass, accordion, flute...  and the list is still growing. Inspirations for the band now are Jack White and all his bands (white stripes, the Raconteurs, The Dead Weather,...), Robert Johnson and original blues, Kings Of Leon, Talking heads.



Gavin: Luke and Chas, what were your thoughts at the time on Tessa and Sophie's careers and seeing where they were headed?



Chas: I was serving a mission when Sophie and Tessa really started to take off. Sophie had written only two songs right before I left, but soon after leaving, I received CD's periodically throughout my mission where I would hear the two of them singing and performing these incredible songs. Great rhythm, lyrics, and melodies. I knew that Sophie was born for, and in pursuit of, making it big in the music industry. She had always thought that and I thought she had it. I was excited for her. Tessa had recently joined and was really bringing a new dynamic to the music. They were a perfect combination to make things the world had never known before and I believed in them. I could see they were sacrificing things for their dreams.

click to enlarge 47263_med.jpg

Gavin: For those who don't know, Sophie passed away over two years ago. As a family, how was it for all of you dealing with such an important loss?



Chas: Sophie passed away only three weeks after I returned home from serving a mission. This was the biggest event in any of our lives. Never had our family come close to something this tragic and unexpected.  It took a toll on each of us. I felt strong through the entire experience. I was incredibly grateful for God at this time. I was blessed with peace and could be there for my family through the experience. We are stronger and have made changes in our mentality for life that have made us better people. We miss her every day and she is the light of our lives. We do a lot for her.



Gavin: What was it like for you as a group to create music together, and where did the name Luna Lune come from?



Chas: There is nothing like that moment when a new song is born with the band. Someone starts with something... anything really, a drum beat, a lyrical melody, a guitar riff and then sometimes things start to come together. It's energy that can't be felt anywhere else. We see it in each others eyes and we attempt to harness the energy and build out the song. Occasionally we have been known to conceive a song on a Saturday afternoon and play it at a show that night.  this is rare, but it's happened a couple times and is insanely fun. Other times we work hard and long on a song and it will change. We literally have five versions of "Green Lights" on our album.

click to enlarge 47258_med.jpg

Gavin: What did you think of the public reaction to it when it was released, and how much money did you raise for Sophie's Place?



Tony: We sold out the show of over 800 tickets and we were the only band. The response to our efforts was incredible and we have a lot of people to thank for their support. We invested all our time and efforts into our album release concert trying to give people an experience far beyond "local music."



Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?



Tessa: Salt Lake needs a place like Velour in Provo, and they need the college crowd to own it. From open mic nights to mid level and upper level artists, music needs to become a natural priority for the college scene. It's not a "bar music scene," it's a place where people come to hear and appreciate the music. Utah deserves more credit than it gets, and I think we are well on our way to getting it with the amount of bands coming out of here we are starting to gain some respect.

click to enlarge 47307_med.jpg

Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?



Chas I literally am probably Solar Suit's biggest fan... don't know if you can write that without sounding too cliche, but it's entirely true.



Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how its affects local musicians?



Luke: I am a big supporter of local music getting on the radio. You think of places like Portland and Austin where they are known for local music and I think the radio is part of the next move for Utah to step up its game. Get the locals hearing about their local bands and that might increase interest in the concerts and venues where they play. Could be a snowball effect.

click to enlarge 47242_med.jpg

Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?



Tessa: My opinion is unsettled. I've heard good arguments for both sides, but I believe that either way, bands need to be supported somehow and if they give away their music I would hope that those who take it would respond generously to the creators of that music.



Gavin: What can we expect from all of you over the rest of this year?



Tessa: May 17 at Murray Theater we're playing at a charity concert that is free but there will be a cap on capacity. First come first serve. Our album is on iTunes and all music streaming sights. Talk about touring around to many Hard Rock Cafe's in conjunction with supporting Sophie's Place over the next months.  It's in the works.





Hurris & Gig (Mason, Hurris & Gig)

click to enlarge 47398_med.jpg

HirrisAndGig.com



Gavin: Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.



Mason: We are Hurris and Gig, and along with me, Producer/DJ Mason Brewer, we make up the three pieces of the group Hurris & Gig. Each of us are college educated and working full-time jobs so we are some busy dudes. Performing and making music is what we love to do.

click to enlarge 47228_med.jpg

Gavin: What got each of you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?



Hurris: To be honest, I didn't listen to a lot of music until high school. It wasn't until I started writing and rapping, that I really started to love music. One of my friends was messing around with rap back in 10th grade and asked me to be apart of it. He didn't end up doing anything but it made me find my passion so I'm grateful for that. The main people who influenced me to keep rapping were Kanye West and Lupe Fiasco.



Gig: I have always had a passion for music, thanks to my parents. My mom was a piano teacher for most of my childhood, and my dad was in a few bands throughout my childhood. I started seriously following hip-hop when I was in fifth grade, but didn't begin writing until I was 15. My main influences would have to be Ludacris, Q-tip, Common, and Los. I listen to mainly Hip-hop, but I enjoy to a lot of different styles of music.



Mason: I've always loved music but my first experience actually learning to play an instrument was being forced by my parents to go to piano lessons and crying the whole way there every day. Fortunately, my other experiences with instruments weren't as traumatic and I picked up guitar in seventh grade and started composing entire tracks by my junior year of high school. I loved being able to take a something I heard in my head and make it a reality so I kept at it and started making beats when Hurris started writing. My biggest musical influence growing up was Muse but my modern influences come from the production of Sleigh Bells, Timbaland and The XX.



Gavin: How did all of you meet each other and become friends?



Hurris: Mason and I have known each other since middle school, but didn't start making music until our junior year in high school. The three of us actually went to 7-12 grades together but I didn't start hanging out with Shaun (Gig) until the end of senior year.

click to enlarge 47120_med.jpg

Gavin: When did you decide to form Hurris & Gig and what was it like for all three of you composing new songs together?



Gig: Hurris and I started freestyling together with a couple other friends during our senior year. We had a desire to create music that had positive and energetic content. We recorded our 1st collaboration in Mason's basement that summer, as well as our first mixtape in late 2009. Whether we have used Masons beats or not, he has had a big part in the production/design of our albums, as well as our performances. We all sit down and brain-storm from time to time, but we all lead very busy lives, so most of the composition is done individually, and then pieced together as a group. It's a long process because we all strive to put our best on our songs, so when we do complete songs, it is a very inspiring feeling.



Gavin: Being an emcee duo, how is it for you figuring out the best tradeoffs and making the songs cohesive for a live performance to go off without a hitch?



Hurris: It's hard to explain, haha. When I write my verse, I am always thinking of a good spot where it would be dope to have Gig come in. Whatever sounds good!



Gig: I will ask Hurris to come in on one of my verses sometimes because I'm running out of breath, but mainly because it fits the dynamic of the song. I look at it as an extra tool to add to our performance that not a lot of hip-hop duos use. We have been working with each other for four years now, so the cohesiveness has grown naturally.

click to enlarge 47226_med.jpg

Gavin: You released your debut album, Mall Marauders, back in late 2011. What was it like recording that album and what difficulties did you encounter along the way?



Hurris: It wasn't that difficult really. We shopped around for beats a little bit, then had all of our lyrics down when we went to record.



Gig: It was a quick process. We only took 1-3 takes each verse. We were pleased with our performance, but we didn't know as much as we did with our sophomore album. Mall Marauders was a stepping stone and a great learning experience.



Gavin: What was the public reaction when it came out and how was it hearing tracks get airplay?



Hurris: When did we get airplay? That's news to us, Gavin. As far as the public, we gained a lot of our strong fan base from Mall Marauders. We have some awesome people who spread it like it's their job. We got to know those people through that first album.

click to enlarge 47190_med.jpg

Gavin: You just released your sophomore album, As Good As It Was. What was the difference between making this album and the last for all of you?



Gig: This album was a very different process. We took a lot of the critiques from Mall Marauders, and tried to eliminate them with this album. We also had the opportunity to record at Metcom, thanks to Mason. That opened up the ability to record on our schedule at a much better facility. Lyrically, we tried to capitalize on our strengths, and push ourselves in more areas than the previous album. The finalization process was much longer, and we made sure (as much as we could) that every little sound was to our liking. Mason was a huge part of the production and design, and it was good having his engineering expertise to help us with the things that we could not have done otherwise. The whole process from start to finish took us about sixteen months, compared to eight months with our first album.



Mason: The biggest difference for me on this album was the focus on getting the right performances out of Hurris and Gig. I'm sure I drove these guys insane getting them to say their lines with just the right inflection or less intensity or more intensity etc. Also, personally spending time to remake beats or change the actual structure of some of the songs to fit the feel of the album better was a must on this project.



Gavin: Are you looking to tour anytime soon or are you good playing gigs in Utah for now?



Hurris: Absolutely. The question is, how do we actually go on tour? We are definitely on the look out for ways of making it happen. We love performing in Salt Lake, but we are more than ready to travel and experience that lifestyle. We just sold out our release show so we're stoked on that too.

click to enlarge 47141_med.jpg

Gavin: Moving onto state-wide stuff, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?



Hurris: I can only speak for the hip-hop scene, but I feel that Salt Lake doesn't have enough support from the people living here. Rap shows have an alright attendance, but you see the same people at every show. Shout out to those people, but where is everyone else at? For the few years we've been at it, I can see a big difference on the way local hip-hop is perceived. We are making good progress.



Gig: I think that this city needs a face musically. There is a lot of Provo music out there, and I really respect the movement that has grown down there. We are trying to build an identity up here that could match with their prestige. We plan to create a buzz that this city hasn't really been a part of. There is a lot of room for growth.



Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?



Mason I agree with Gig, I think by far the strongest music scene in the state right now is in Provo. There's the right combination of people trying to make things happen for themselves, from the people coming out to shows to the promoters and venues, it's just a good culture of collaboration. Salt Lake seems to be more fractured but hopefully we can help pull some of that collaboration to the music scene here and get some people noticed.

click to enlarge 47159_med.jpg

Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?



Gig: We like Malevolent MC, Luna Lune, Solarsuit and The Moth & The Flame.



Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how its affects local musicians?



Hurris: I love "Friday Night Fallout" on KRCL. I don't listen to it every week but I can always count on good music when I do. There are a lot of people who listen to KRCL because the rest of the music on other stations is pretty crappy. I think it's good to mix in local music on the rotation. There is some pride in hearing local music on the radio.

click to enlarge 47175_med.jpg

Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?



Gig: I think it has helped us out a lot. Giving fans the ability to listen to our music and downloading it for free just gives us exposure at this point. I think that after this album, we have realized that you can't make a high quality album without putting in a lot of money. There needs to be some sort of compensation given to the artists that you enjoy. I think that illegally downloading is where you are cheating the artist of their time, money, and energy.



Hurris: Like Gig said, we have gained almost all of our fans from giving people free music. But it does suck spending a good sum of money and not getting a ton back. We are starting to see our investment pay off though.



Gavin: What can we expect from all of you over the rest of this year?



Hurris: We are planning on dropping a few videos, along with some new music. We are very excited for this new project we are working on, but no plans to release it in its entirety anytime soon. 2013 will be a building year; we want to play some bigger shows, get on the road, and keeping gaining these awesome fans.

click to enlarge 47111_med.jpg

Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?



Gig: Thanks to all those who have joined the murk! It's crazy to such a good reaction from our latest album and the response we've been getting from random people. Just keep on spreading the good word of H&G. Download our music and check us out on our website.





Follow Gavin's Underground:

Tags: , , , ,

Pin It
Favorite

More by Gavin Sheehan

Latest in The Daily Feed

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

© 2014 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation