As we run through our semi-annual spring/summer revival here at the Makeshift Desk I've decided to dig a little deeper into the back part of the drawer and pull out what I hope will become a regular feature around here: Artist interviews. Vince DiFranco, singer and guitarist from Cleveland's Ohio Sky, was kind enough to answer a few questions for us. Please check out both their full length 'Curses' and their new EP 'This House is Old and Filled with Ghosts'. You'll be greeted by a wall of sound that is at times both crushing and beautiful and songs that are just plain good
Q: You guys are from the Cleveland Ohio area and I'd read an
article from a few years ago where you sort of said that
you weren't quite sure how the band fit into the Cleveland
scene. Do you still feel that way or have you sort of
found your niche, if there is such a thing?
Q: Are you guys working with a label right now or self
Q: The new EP sort of plays like a mini concept album to me,
with the 3 longer songs broken up by the two shorter
tracks,The Silence, which sort of sounds like a weird
seance to me, and Daybreak. The record is described on
cdbaby as "A haunting journey through the shadows of the
mind." Is there a specific concept behind the record or am
I just making that up?
Q: You recorded the album at SUMA studios and have posted
several teaser videos of the making or the record. It
seems like you guys were having a good time. What was the
recording process like and is there any reason why you
decided to record at SUMA instead of where you recorded
Q: The guitar leads on this record have a sort of Pink
Floyd/David Gilmour feel to me. Was that a sound or style
your were shooting for? What did you guys use to record
Q: Stylistically the EP seems a little mellower than Curses,
what was the song writing process like and was it a
conscious effort to sort of make a quieter record?
Q: How do you approach writing lyrics, does the music generally come first or do you bring in lyrical ideas and try fit musical ideas to them?
Q: Patrick did the art for the EP, was this a piece he did
specifically for the record? It seems like it might be tied into the concept of the record, was it a collaborative effort or an image he came up with on his own?
Q: When and where will people be able to get their hands on a
physical copy of 'This House is Old and Full of Ghosts'?
Also, are any physical copies of Curses available?
Q: In between Curses and This House you recorded some other stuff at, I think, SUMA, a Beatles cover and an acoustic version of Van Gogh that were both released as Youtube videos. The Beatles cover is also available on Bandcamp. Was anything else recorded during this time and if so will any of it be made available? .
Q: I've seen the band described as anything from prog rock to
psychedelic to space rock to even post rock. Do you
think you guys fit in a any particular genre, do you even
want to fit in a particular genre?
Q: Last summer you guys played a show with Torche in front of
the Rock Hall. How how well are you guys received by a "metal" crowd?
A: We are usually received very well by fans of heavier music, but the Torche show had a very diverse crowd. Which is encouraging to see.
Q: What music/ artists do you find interesting at the moment?
What are you listening to?
gain an audience, but it's also made it easier for
everyone and anyone to try to gain an audience. In a time
where pretty much anyone can release a record on their own
how hard is it to stand out and not get lost in the
seeming endless number of bands out there?
Q: Along those lines, how do you feel about digital music?
I'm still the kind of person that likes to hold a physical
album, look at the art and all of that stuff, but the
internet has made the distribution of music so much
easier. Do you prefer to have a physical copy of a record
or are you content with mp3s? Do you think there's a
difference in the experience?
Q: Do you guys have any plans to tour for the EP outside of
THE MAKESHIFT DESK RAPID FIRE SPEED ROUND BROUGHT TO YOU BY TACOS, BEER, AND THAT THING OVER THERE
Favorite book? Atlas Shrugged
Favorite TV show? Mad Men
Favorite Album? Downward is Heavenward by: HUM
Favorite food? All of it
favorite guitar? The Thinline Telecaster
favorite amp? Anything with tubes
favorite band? OHIO SKY
The band is also playing a couple of shows in Cleveland so if you are in the area check them out.
May 19th at NOW THATS CLASS w/ ANCIENT VVISDOM and IDES OF GEMINI
June 12th at THE GROG SHOP w/ BEN KENNEY of INCUBUS
June 21st at THE BEACHLAND TAVERN w/ FILMSTRIP