Interview with Bad Suns @ Hawthorne Theatre in Portland, OR
Interview written and asked by: Aili Hauptmann
Veracious Magazine: So, this is the start of the tour. How have the first few shows gone so far?
Ray: Good, even surprisingly well I’d say.
Christo: Ya, it’s felt like something brand new for us.
VM: You also recently released a new album about a month ago, how do you think it’s been received by fans?
Christo: I mean judging off the first couple of shows, I mean it’s been awesome to hear those songs being sang back to us as loud as the older tunes. It seems like the fans are really digging it so far, and if that’s true then we’re really happy so far.
VM: What was your inspiration behind the new album, and what was the process behind the album like?
Christo: So many things, it was a pretty long process. I’d say it probably took the better part of a year and a half, and not all that time was necessarily spent in the studio. A lot of it was just kind of writing and you know gathering different kinds of things. But, ya I couldn’t even think of a way to nail down the inspiration in something so simple I guess.
VM (to Christo): So are you the only one that writes the songs, or is a group effort?
Christo: No, we all write the music together, and I write the lyrics and melodies and stuff like that.
VM: What were you trying to tell from your new album? Was there a specific message you were trying to send fans?
Christo: I think the message is a bit underlying. It’s just kind of an overall message of hope I think. The album thematically is just kind of to do with the past, and what happens in life when you’re entering adulthood and the underlying message is just hope more than anything else.
VM: Do you guys have any pre-show rituals?
Christo: We all give each other a fist bump before shows lately.
Ray: That and chugging like half a bottle of whiskey. No, not actually. (laughs)
VM: Last time you were here in Portland was with the Neighbourhood, did you enjoy Portland, what was your experience like?
Christo: Ya, last time we were here it was really nice. I remember I walked around and went to a coffee shop and read a book and ate lunch by myself last time (laughs). It was actually a really nice time. Portland is always great and it’s a city that we get to come back to over and over again luckily, and we’ve been here in the fall and the winter, we’ve been here in the summer and we’ve been here in the springs so we’ve seen it in all its different moods I suppose, and it’s always beautiful.
Ray: Ya, we’re all really big fans of Portland. I remember I came here to look at colleges and I really fell in love particular. I actually saw a show here, I saw the bravery here when I was like 17, and it was a magical feeling and I had never really done anything like that so I always have some sort of connection with Portland, I really really like it here.
VM: And I know you guys played at the Crystal the time before this and the time before that the Hawthorne actually, what do you feel is the difference between the venues?
Christo: Ya the Hawthorne is a bit more intimate, we love both, but the Hawthorne is always a really good time.
VM: Do you guys have any other artistic outlets besides music?
Ray: Gavin and I will paint sometimes, not like together (both laugh) but I like to draw. I also like to cook
VM: Anything specific?
Ray: Um, not really. I just like trying new things
Miles: Peanut butter and jelly
Ray: (laughs) ya, just whatever seems interesting or feasible.
VM: How do you normally like to determine your set list for shows?
Christo: We’ll usually just get together before the beginning of a tour and kind of just start rehearsing a bunch of songs, and just kind of go over it together, and put them all down on the table and just start picking which ones we feel are most appropriate. Ya (laughs), idk.
VM: Last question is, what do you guys do on off days when on tour?
Christo: Generally we’re driving.
Gavin: Ya, our best off day is sitting in the van all day.
Ray: We had an off day yesterday were we stopped in Mount Shasta actually. I don’t think we’ve ever stopped there in the town actually, and it was really pretty and we stopped in a little um…
Christo: A crystal Shop
Ray: ya, like a crystal store and they had a bunch of incense and things like that, that we always try and find stuff like that, I don’t know weird little stores.
Gavin: We also go to malls a lot on off days, just like your standard average mall. Maybe buy one thing.
VM: Is there anything else you’d like to say?
Christo: Thanks for doing this interview with us!