“He was dating a friend of one of my coworkers and I was over at his house and there was a drum set there. At 2 in the morning I was like, “Can I play these?” and he was like, “It’s a little late there buddy,” says Andrew Torrey, drummer. Singer Adrian Sebastian just laughs and replies, “Yeah that sounds like something I would say.”
The band originally had four members but when the previous drummer left, Adrian called up Andrew to be the replacement. The four members created a band-titled EP, but after the release the number of band members started dwindling. On left because of school, the other left because of an incident and ultimately there were two left, Adrian and Andrew. The band’s first EP contained a fuller sound but now with two in the ranks changes had to be made. “With two people we obviously couldn’t do that anymore,” Adrian said, “so that really made us experiment with what we could do.”
One change was the pivotal day when the band got rid of their high-hats (not hats with a excess amount of height but foot-operated cymbals that are part of a drum kit). “I’m gonna go officially on record - fuck high hats,” Andrew says. The instrument was left on top of the van and fell as they drove off the highway but they never retrieved them, they just kept driving. “I think that’s a metaphor for my relationship with my high-hats, I never looked back,” Andrew says. At first this brought worry since they were dealing with the challenges of being only two but eventually it all worked out and they dig their more simplistic sound. “I dig lush arrangements but I think there’s something special to be said about a song that works in the most simplistic fashion possible,” Adrian says. In regards to the death of the high-hats he says, “It made a big impact and made me realize a lot of things like maybe you don’t need a keyboard player, maybe you don’t need a bass player, maybe you don’t need high hats.”
The band’s two latest singles, Scream Queen and God Doesn’t Want Us, give us a sample of how adjusting to two-members has changed their sound. “Once I sing my verse and chorus and it’s like, what are we gonna jam?” Adrian jokingly says, “Let me take a solo Andrew and then you take a solo and then we’ll just do an instrumental part where you just play the drums. So yeah the songs are shorter, they’re more aggressive now.”
While past lyrics were satirical in nature, the satirical scale is higher in their newer songs. “This dude is never fucking serious, every word out of his mouth, he’s probably fucking with you,” Andrew says of his bandmate. “For me satire is always what affects me the most when I watch something, it makes the biggest impression on me to think from a different perspective in order to make a point,” Adrian says,”You can break apart as a structure and see what wrong about it and write about it without pointing a finger at someone directly.”
There is some worry from Adrian that listeners might not pick up on the satire but Andrew isn’t worried about it. “When he writes new songs and brings them in he sometimes says,“Do you think people will think I’m a bad person because I’m saying this, will they get it’s not me saying it?” and I’m like dude just sing it they’re probably not even paying attention,” says Andrew.
The two men have been working on their latest EP over the past year but are not rushing anything. “We wanna nail the landing, we’ve been up in the air for a long time and we need to stick the landing,” Adrian says.