Back in 2012 Andy States recorded an EP in his Philadelphia bedroom that was eventually released under the moniker Cruiser. While bedroom recording naturally leans toward melancholic, the self-titled EP sidestepped the bedroom pop standard set by the likes of Youth Lagoon or even Daniel Johnston and was as bright and jovial as it is sonically vulnerable and relatable. As demand for live shows grew, the age-old problem of having to play the songs live lead to the addition of Jon Van Dine, Kyle Cook, Bruno Catrambone.
Today the band announced a name change to CRUISR (“Cruiser” is already taken by a Scottish band) and a signing to Vagrant Records joining the roster of indie heavy hitters like Edward Sharpe, AlunaGeorge, and The 1975 to name just a few.
But most importantly, they released a new track titled “All Over” the title track from the upcoming EP that you can grab on Sept. 23rd. The track shows off a more flushed-out sound then the early days in Andy’s bedroom, but maintains that same catchy charm that won over ears two years ago. “All Over” oozes with sunny garage-pop vibes. Bloody lipped vocals, Vitamin-C infused guitars and lively drums make this the song we’ve been missing all summer.
Check it out the track below and read our interview with Andy about interrupting church choirs, Bad Boy Records and much more.
– Generally bedroom pop has a melancholy feel to it, but your music has bright, summer sound. What lead to you creating that type of music.
I think what lead me to doing this music was simply how much I love that time of year and that I’m generally a happy person. I usually find myself loving upbeat music and wanting to create it too. Where production is concerned, a lot of what we do happens as a bedroom recording, but ends up having elements that were recorded in a studio environment (specifically drums). When people think of bedroom recording they definitely don’t think of bands like Tame Impala, but in a big way that’s what they are, you just don’t hear it in the music as much. I really look up to people like Ruban Nielson (Unknown Mortal Orchestra) and Kevin Parker (Tame Impala). They are writing and producing amazing records, for the most part outside of a studio environment.
– You originally began as a solo project, so I’d imagine your music had a very special place in your heart. How difficult was the process of handing over your music to other human beings?
It’s definitely something I still struggle with but I know that it is definitely better to have other people involved. There’s something special that happens when you can sort of let go of something and let someone else put their spin on it. It never comes out EXACTLY how you wanted it to, but that’s the point. You end up making compromises with the people you collaborate with, whether it’s how the drums are played or how loud they are in the mix. I find other people pointing out things that make the music better and make me realize how much I still have to learn. I think some really unique and magical things can happen when you get a couple of the right people pushing and pulling something in different directions.
When I first started working with Jeremy Park on the initial Cruiser EP he was telling me how much he had to compromise to get Trevor from Youth Lagoon happy with Year of Hibernation. Trevor wanted it lo-fi and Jeremy wanted it to sound huge. That record is amazing and I doubt anyone would ever do anything to change it. The compromise they made is what made that record what is and there’s no doubt it’s something special.
– What new music have you been jamming on lately? Any recommendations?
I’ve been listening to the new Alvvays record a ton. Also really excited to hear Haerts debut and just waiting for a legit Jai Paul release to happen. There are some great philly bands that are just getting started that I’m really excited about (Needlepoints, Lantern). And more that have been around that are releasing some great new stuff (Creepoid, Bleeding Rainbow, and Cold Fronts).
– What is 2014 going to be like for Cruiser?
Busy busy busy. I’ve been writing a lot and am working around the clock to try to get the ideas that I have fleshed out into full blown songs. We’re fortunate enough to now be working with Windish as a booking agent and are going to be playing at Made In America on my birthday. It’s a bit nerve racking at times, you convince yourself that the rug could get pulled out from under you at any time. Things seem to be on a good trajectory right now and we just hope people continue to love what we make so we can keep doing it without going too crazy.
– What was your first musical experience you can remember growing up?
There is still a moment that sticks out to me when I was very young. My mother was part of choir and I remember tagging along and having to sit in the church pews while they rehearsed. I remember looking over in the pew and seeing a guitar case with a guitar just sitting in it. I was definitely way to young to be able to pick something like that up but I remember reaching over and just touching the strings and being amazed at how much sound came out of it. The church had these huge ceilings so it ended up seeming really loud and I remember the choir all being disrupted by it. I didn’t end up playing guitar til probably ten years later, but that feeling stuck with me as a kid and is what initially made me really want to play guitar.
Okay Lightning Round….
– Favorite Beer?
I’ve been really into all the session IPAs coming out. Started with Founders All Day IPA but all the other great breweries have done their own versions and I love them all.
– Jay Z or Kanye?
Oooh uhhh… Jay Z, but specifically big pimpin’ Jay Z
– Instagram or Vine?
I used to use Vine a lot when it came out but have honestly forgotten about it, Instagram wins.
– Favorite Blues guitarist?
I’m shrugging and hearing this in my head. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuABhumm6fY
– Apple or PC?
They still make PCs?
– East Coast or West Coast?
East Coast, not because I live here but because of Bad Boy Records.