Checking in on Blondes


Checking in on Blondes


BULLETT: Despite your band name, neither of you are actually blonde. How did you come up with this moniker?

BLONDES: As you note, it’s not literal; it’s a sound and a shape, an idea, a cultural reference that we enjoy.

So, you both went to Oberlin College, in Ohio. Was it hard to find inspiration for your music in such a “small town” atmosphere? Do you know Lena Dunham?

We do actually know Lena, Oberlin’s a small place.  It is also a fantastic music school so it wasn’t very difficult to feel musically inspired.

And you started making music together in college?

Yup.  Playing music with friends and starting bands just to play at parties was one of the main activities around those parts.

So after college, then, you both went your separate ways, but then reconvened in Europe?

We switched coasts to do some post grad soul searching and then met up a year later to work on music and check out Berlin.

With your music having an electronic, slightly techno vibe, how much of that was of European influence?

Not that much at all actually.  We had both been playing electronic music for a while as well as getting more and more interested in the repetitive structure and body hypnosis that dance music allows, and our sound was more a development of those ideas.  I guess if you count music from the 70s, then, yeah, European music was a huge influence.  If anything our reaction to european techno/house in Berlin at the time was that it was too overproduced and not gritty enough and we wanted more punk and human touch in it.

What themes do you find yourself revisiting in your music?

Organic development, harmonic modal drones, the experience of music in the body, mistakes/the visible hand.

What’s your favorite thing about New York?

Central Park.

If you could tour with one band, past or present, who would it be and why?

Van Halen.  I wanna throw TVs out of windows….  no, the Grateful Dead, what a fantastic live music environment.

What are you currently working on, and what’s next for you guys?

We just finished this awesome show at the Museum of Modern Art  in NYC.  We had some video up and an hour long 8-channel ambient techno installation besides our usual set.  It was a rad evening. Up next we’re going on tour in Europe in February – got some great club gigs lined up, record release parties at Shackelwell Arms in London and Panorama Bar in Berlin. Some US touring at some point too, and then its back to the studio to work on some new material.