Interviews

If Henry Rollins was in the Pet Shop Boys but with live drums and even gayer lyrics… Introducing: BELTED SWEATER!

Sounding a bit “like if Henry Rollins was in Erasure, but with live drums and even gayer lyrics, chronicling terribly humiliating Grindr hookups”, experimental drums and synth filled experimental artist BELTED SWEATER is gearing up to release his debut LP (coming up on December 4th), and today we have a great pleasure to dive into his first single “Fem Top”, available now on Bandcamp and Spotify. Check out the official video above and learn more about the project below.

Belted Sweater is the solo project of Los Angeles based drummer Christopher Patrick Gregory.

“I’ve played drums in a bunch of LA punk/math/synth/metal bands (Letting Up Despite Great Faults, The Littlest Viking, Wizzrobe) and finally decided to make a super gay solo record after a melodramatic breakup.” – comments CPG.

“I tracked everything myself (synths, shouting and live drums) like a moderately chubby version of late period, leather daddy Trent Reznor, channelling gay heartbreak into sweet synth riffs and shreddy drum fills.”

His debut LP, I’m fucking delightful, sounds like if Henry Rollins was in the Pet Shop Boys but with live drums and even gayer lyrics, chronicling terribly humiliating Grindr hookups and free clinic visits; basically Blood on the Tracks in the age of anonymous Craigslist encounters. He tracked all the instruments himself, like a moderately chubby amalgam of late period, leather daddy Trent Reznor and Dirty Mind-era Prince, using acoustic drums, synths and hoarse shouting.

Asked about the story behind his debut song, CPG commented: “Fem top is about throwing yourself into one-night stands after a bitter breakup. It can be a wild time, you’re trying to move on but you also want to make sense of what happened. It’s sort of a mindset where you can vacillate between wanting to be left alone, and wanting constant companionship. It’s like a balancing act where your personal sense of identity is in flux, so the song sort of documents the changes, small and large, that inevitably come from the end of a long term relationship.”

Belted Sweater

Expounding more on his unique instrumentation, a mix of of prog rock drums, 80s synths, and late 90s screamo vocals, Christopher concluded: “That wasn’t so much a conscious choice, like experimenting with different genres just for the hell of it, like I’VE JUST INVENTED ZYDECO DOOM SKA! It was more of just using the skill sets I already had in a different sort of way.”

Albums listened to a lot while writing/recording the album:

Bratmobile – Pottymouth
The Essence – Purity
Kate Bush – The Dreaming
Loma Prieta – Self Portrait
Antelope – Reflector
Patrick Wolf – Lupercalia
Wormrot – Voices
Thingy – To The Innocent
Janet Jackson – Control
Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark – Self Titled
Orchid – Chaos is Me
Mary J. Blige – My Life
Xiu Xiu – Dear God, I Hate Myself
Robyn – Honey
New Order – Power, Corruption & Lies
Sleep – Holy Mountain
Gentleman Reg – Jet Black

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