If you could stare into the eyes of death, The Cure and Interpol may or may not be waiting behind those blank pupils for you. But you can bet they’re there for Twin Tigers, where the blackest depths come with a slight tinge of goth-pop. These Georgia peaches build bittersweet melodies from a put-on despair, drawn from the band’s natural dark side.
Soon to release their Death Wish LP on Old Flame Records, Twin Tigers’ frontman Matthew Rain gave us a look inside his funeral genie’s lamp, singing the tune of ye olde rock-and- roll lifestyle and offering up a first listen to the new LP.
How does Death Wish compare to your debut, Gray Waves? Do you feel like you've found a sound you want to live in for a while, or are you still experimenting, reaching for something new?
Death Wish is a darker album out the gate than Gray Waves. I moved over from playing guitar to writing this entire album on keyboard. This sound is great and will be a joy to explore live. That being said, I hope we never stop at any sound. I imagine if that ever happens we will probably call it a day. For me, it's always the saddest feeling ever when a band you love wilts into a sequel of its glory days.
What was the process like for making this record?
We had a lot more freedom with our time. The studio was loaned to us as gifted time so there wasn't this cash clock ticking in the background. When you don't have a label calling you about some tab they have to pick up, you're more inclined to enjoy yourself. I hope that came off in the takes we got. This album was recorded by our guitar player Forrest and produced entirely Twin Tigers.
I imagine arena bands have some kind of pre-show psych-up rituals. Do you guys have pre-show psych-down rituals to help you get into more of a dark place?
The darkness is boiler plate for a couple of us all the time. We always bring it in before we do our set. Anytime things are rushed and you take the stage without that collective drive, the show suffers.
You're on a pretty grueling tour right now. How many shows can you do in a row before it becomes robotic, or how do you avoid each show becoming like a routine?
Playing rock music is all about leaving routine behind. This is the thing we love to do, so we don't treat it like a job. Even when we go out for months at a time, we always find a way to enjoy ourselves. The content is always shaped in some way by the gallery. Waking up somewhere new everyday has a way of keeping life interesting. Lots of bands complain about the circumstances of touring, but it really is the best.
Interpol has played a big role in your band — from touring with them to using their studio — are they like big brothers now? Who's the most fun to hang with in that band?
I'm going to have to give the fun award to Sam Fogarino. It was Sam that got us on both of the tours with Interpol, and he helped us with the studio space. I haven't spoken to him much lately cause he's been busy being a dad, but every time we’ve see each other it's been great. When Interpol first happened I really loved them. They seemed to draw inspiration from many bands I really loved like Joy Division, Depeche Mode and the Cure. Going out with a band with that strong of a following was amazing.
Twin Tigers’ Death Wish will be released on Old Flame Records next Tuesday.